‘Unnecessary Farce’ cracks up at Timber Lake beginning July 18

Online Staff Report

MOUNT CARROLL, Ill. — Timber Lake Playhouse (TLP) will present the area premiere of the acclaimed new comedy, Unnecessary Farce by Paul Slade Smith, July 18-27. Lili-Anne Brown, artistic director of Bailiwick Chicago, returns to direct the shenanigans after past TLP hits Cabaret, Sweet Charity and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.

A hit around the country since its Midwestern premiere in 2006, the play has been called, “A smash hit! Two hours of non-stop laughter. The plot weaves you through mix-ups and mayhem you won’t believe. This is one funny show that you don’t want to miss.”

Set in two adjoining hotel rooms in an economy motel, Unnecessary Farce follows two inexperienced police officers on a sting operation during which they must secretly videotape the mayor and his accountant with the hopes of uncovering an embezzlement scheme. Thrown into the mix are the mayor’s kindly wife and his nervous security guard, who warns the accountant not to mention the money, or suffer dire consequences.

Celebrated TLP resident performers make up the cast. Hannah-Jo Weisberg (Eulalie MacKecknie Shinn in The Music Man) plays Officer Billie Dwyer with Alex Johnson (Don in A Chorus Line) as Officer Eric Sheridan. Karen, the unwitting accountant, is played by Sarah Larson (Marian in The Music Man) and Matthew C. Webb (Mayor Shinn in The Music Man) earns a second term playing Mayor Meekly. Mrs. Meekly is played by Erica Stephan (Ariel in last summer’s Footloose), Agent Frank is Brandyn Day (who will also play Sir Galahad in TLP’s upcoming Spamalot), and Cody Jolly (Harold Hill in The Music Man) is Todd.

Director Brown said: “When I saw one of the first productions of the show at Peninsula Players in Door County, I knew I wanted to do the play at Timber Lake someday. There aren’t a lot of American farces, and this one has such relatable characters (and eight doors!), you feel like you know these people — and you hope you’re NEVER in the situations they’re in!”

Unnecessary Farce runs July 18-27 for 11 performances only. Showtimes are evenings at 7:30 p.m. with matinees Saturday, July 20, at 3 p.m., Sunday, July 21, at 2 p.m., and Wednesday, July 24, at 2 p.m. TLP is at 8215 Black Oak Road in rural Mount Carroll, Ill. Tickets are $15-23 and are available at the box office, by calling (815) 244-2035 or visiting www.timberlakeplayhouse.org.

Following Unnecessary Farce, TLP will present the regional premiere of Monty Python’s Spamalot (lovingly ripped off of the film Monty Python and The Holy Grail) Aug. 1-11. Seussical, based on the books of Dr. Seuss, will be presented for children Aug. 6, 8, 9 and 10. All tickets to Seussical are $6. The 52nd season at Timber Lake closes with ‘SWonderful: The New Gershwin Musical Revue Aug. 15-25.

Posted July 17, 2013

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