Elden Street Players Greater TunaBy Laura & Mike Clark • Oct 30th, 2007 • Category: Reviews
Listen to our review of the Elden Street Players’ production of Greater Tuna [MP3 4:57 2.3MB].
Mike: This was a funny show. The premise is two actors playing twenty different parts.
Laura: This show had some funny skits in it. There really wasn’t a plot like you think of a beginning, middle, and end. There really wasn’t that kind of a plot, but there was kind of a running theme throughout the performance. Over all it really didn’t do much for me. There were some funny lines.
Mike: Greater Tuna is a play by Jaston Williams, Joe Sears, and Ed Howard. It’s a two man show where the two men play about twenty different parts: male, female, old, young. A wide range of people and personalities. They are basically just people in the town of Tuna, Texas. The show starts out at local radio station OKKK and we visit back to the station a few times through out the day and then it ends with OKKK signing off for the day.
Laura: The two actors in the show were Chuck Dluhy and Matthew Randall. They both did a good job. They had a lot of costume wig, and personality changes. One of the bits that I liked was Stanley Bumiller played by Chuck Dluhy. He was the rebel biker who had a score to settle.
Mike: That was one of the few ongoing plots in the show involving the death of the town judge and the aftermath of his death. Really, though, there wasn’t much of a plot. There were lots of little vignettes put together. A few of the different characters came back at different times through out the show. You would hear a chuckle or a laugh at different times throughout the show when you would see an old favorite come back in, you knew what to expect from them.
I liked the Reverend Spikes played by Matthew Randall, when he was giving the eulogy for the judge. He shared so many different common phrases and idioms and biblical verses taken out of context. His sermon actually said nothing, but he delivered it so matter-of-factly and so properly that it was really very funny. A lot of the bits in the show were very funny. But some of them, not quite fell flat, but were just amusing.
Laura: During the show there were four people who probably worked the hardest behind the scenes as the costume designers and dressers. They were Kat Brais, Judy Whelihan, Rosemary Hartman, and Susannah Todd. They did an incredible job because there were full costume changes going on back stage. Hair, wigs, clothing, everything. They were working so fast and it really made it look smooth.
Mike: It was amazing to watch one of the actors step back stage and fifteen seconds later come back out as an entirely different person. To a point they had layered costumes, but some of the costumes just couldn’t be layered. Of course they changed how they walked and how they carried themselves and that was an accomplishment.
Laura: The Elden Street Players now own the Industrial Strength Theatre and so over the summer there was some major revamping that went on with new sets. They took off about eighteen years worth of paint on the floor. Redid the walls in the box office area and really made it a nice inviting place.
Mike: The new seats were nice. They weren’t doing the little slopey thing as much. In the old seats, at least I always felt that, I was tilted forward, like I was going to pitch over into the row in front of me. That wasn’t the feeling I got on Saturday. One of the complaints I had with the show was the making fun of a lot of the southern culture. To a point a lot of the humor they were doing was satire and some of it was simply uncomfortable because it was probably hitting too close to how the real world works. So be aware that some people will find the humor offensive, but it is a funny show.
Laura: Greater Tuna is playing at the Industrial Strength Theatre in Herndon, Virginia through November 17th. Friday and Saturdays at 8 pm and Sunday matinees on the 4th at 3 and the 11th at 7 pm. Also a Thursday performance on the fifteenth at 8 pm.
Mike: The show runs about two hours and fifteen minutes with one intermission. This is the community theater debut of Greater Tuna in the Washington DC area.
Laura: And now, on with the show.
Photos provided by Elden Street Players.
- Arles Struvie: Chuck Dluhy
- Didi Snavely: Chuck Dluhy
- Harold Dean Latttimer: Chuck Dluhy
- Petey Fisk: Chuck Dluhy
- Jody Bumiller: Chuck Dluhy
- Stanley Bumiller: Chuck luhy
- Charlene Bumiller: Chuck Dluhy
- Chad Hartford: Chuck Dluhy
- Phinas Blye: Chuck Dluhy
- Vera Carp: Chuck Dluhy
- Thurston Wheelis: Matthew Randall
- Elmer Watkins: Matthew Randall
- Bertha Bumiller: Matthew Randall
- Yippy: Mathew Randall
- Leonard Childers: Matthew Randall
- Pearl Burras: Matthew Randall
- R.R. Snavely: Matthew Randall
- Rev. Spikes: Matthew Randall
- Sheriff Givens: Matthew Randall
- Hank Bumiller: Matthew Randall
- Producer: Gina Gabay
- Assistant Producer: Theresa Bender
- Director: Bruce Follmer
- Stage Manager: Joyce Gillogly
- Set Design: Rich Klare
- Technical Director: Michael Schlabach
- Master Carpenter: Marty Sullivan
- Set Construction: Mike Schlabach, Marty Sullivan, Jull Tunick, Theresa Bender, Bill Behan, Michael Smith, John Shea
- Set Painting: Michael Smith
- Set Painting Consultant: Cathy Reider
- Light Design: Les Zidel
- Master Electrician: John Shea
- Light Board Operators: Les Zidel, John Shea
- Sound Design: Keith Bell
- Sound Board Operator: Mary Anne Hall
- Costume Design: Judy Whelihan
- Dressers: Kat Brais, Judy Whelihan, Rosemary Hartman, Susannah Todd
- Makeup/Hair Design: Kat Brais
- Publicity: Rich Klare, Ginger Kohles, Todd Huse
- Cover Design/Playbill: Ginger Kohles
- Box Office: Todd Huse
- House Manager: Dave Sinclair
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/2074.
Laura & Mike Clark started ShowBizRadio in August 2005 because they love live theater. They each have both performed in and worked behind the scenes in DC area productions, as well as earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike & Laura are each members of the American Theatre Critics Association, and Mike is a member of the Online News Association.