Catching up with Parson’s Nose Theatre’s artistic director and South Pasadenan, Lance Davis, we can report that the local favorite company has pivoted to offering radio plays featuring all your favorite company actors.
Last May, Parson’s Nose Theater took one look at a bleak future, but rather than fold, immediately went to work to continue their mission – making classic works accessible to today’s audiences. How? Reinvention! “Thanks to twenty years of their popular “Readers’ Theater Series”, creating the “Parson’s Nose Radio Theater” seemed a perfect pivot”, says Davis. With a tip of the hat to the great days of Orson Welles’ “Mercury Theater” the PNT company has remotely recorded 17 offerings so far, available free of charge, 24/7, all over the U.S on Apple, Spotify, wherever you get your podcasts or at www.parsonsnose.org.
This winter, after recording original adaptations of Hans Andersen’s “The Little Fir Tree” and Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” featuring local artists Barry Gordon, Mary Chalon, Paul Perri, John Rafter Lee and the PNT Company, PNT posted a musical tribute to Los Angeles’ own Cliff “Ukulele Ike” Edwards – the lyrical voice of Jiminy Cricket – in “Cliff Edwards: When You Wish”. Next up was “The Musical Wit and Wisdom of Tom Lehrer”, a salute to an icon of the “hip” intellectual set of the 1950s. Both works sprang from the pen of Pasadena’s own – talented author and playwright Hoyt Hilsman.
For the inauguration PNT featured “Ten Poems for America”, including Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s “I Am Waiting”, and continuing the patriotic theme, Stephen Vincent Benet’s “The Devil and Daniel Webster”, and its pitch to “save the Union”. For the Lenten season have a listen to the 15th Century Morality Play “The Summoning of Everyman”, with music by Los Angeles composer Tom Peters.
Next up? O Henry’s “The Skylight Room”, featuring PNT actresses Jill Rogosheske and Westridge grad Marisa Chandler; Jonathan Swift’s scathing “A Modest Proposal”; PNT’s beloved annual “Irish Celebration” of poetry, music and humor; and finally their Pasadena Art Night offering of “Old Time Radio”, “Flash Gordon” and “The Shadow”.
“There’s lots more in the pipeline,” Davis tells us, “And thanks to our PNT board, our fans’ support and a brilliantly creative team of artists, we are delighted to report that Parson’s Nose is alive and well!” So with that, “Alexa! Play Parson’s Nose Radio Theater!”