Working Class Theatre NW is Going Postal

4 Nov

3rd floor Court Room
Old Post Office
1102 A St. Tacoma, WA
(evening theatre-goers must use 11th St. entrance)

Working Class Theater NW will be utilizing the magnificent courtroom in the Historic Old Post Office building to showcase a series of free readings from their upcoming season, plus a late night Sci-Fi dramady called Space Puffs!

Working Class Theatre NW will be utilizing the magnificent courtroom in the Old Post Office building to showcase a series of free readings from their upcoming season, plus a late night Sci-Fi dramady called Space Puffs!

Christina Hughes and Tim Samland want your postman to come to their theater. But this isn’t reason why they will be moving their non-profit Working Class Theatre Northwest (WCTNW) into the Old Post Office in downtown Tacoma. Thanks to a special Spaceworks project that grants them access to the courtroom in the Old Post Office, Christina and Tim are realizing a long-time dream to open a theater that is “socially conscious and relevant to the issues of working class people today.”

Christina Hughes & Tim Samland of Working Class Theater NW

Christina Hughes & Tim Samland of Working Class Theater NW

Throughout the month of November, WCTNW will showcase a series of free readings designed as a preview of their 2014 season. Most of the readings directly correspond to the upcoming season, but the first reading, Zoo Story, revives a 2011 production by former Spaceworks participant Toy Boat Theatre. “Zoo Story” touches on the perennial struggles of social disconnection, loneliness, and class, aligning it with the WCTNW mission to produce plays with relevant and accessible themes.

Cinderella and stepfamily.  Image from "Into the Woods" at the Lakewood Playhouse in 2009.  Costume design and construction by Christina Hughes.

Cinderella and stepfamily. Image from “Into the Woods” at the Lakewood Playhouse in 2009. Costume design and construction by Christina Hughes.

The other plays similarly draw out concerns pertinent to everyday folks like you and me and your postman: financial crisis, suicide, race, religion, anxiety, and identity just to name a few. Relevancy also means that you will not see a major plot crisis driven by something easily resolved in our day-and-age – no kerfuffles that a cell phone would easily fix, for example. With comprehensible yet thought-provoking content on diverse topics, WCTNW will establish a common ground for mutual understanding among diverse audience members.

Over the course of their courthouse residency, WCTNW will also produce a late-night sci-fi series called Space Puffs. Starting with a basic premise – “After an explosion on a mining world, 4 surviving space farers discover alien technology! In this riveting space dramady, we explore new worlds and go boldly where no one has bothered to go before.” – writers and actors will work together to develop a live show that will later be transformed into a web-series. A lively audience will contribute to this improv show by influencing its energy, essentially becoming a co-creator.

Don't miss "Space Puffs" during Sci-Fi nights!

Don’t miss “Space Puffs” during Sci-Fi nights!

The courtroom will hold fewer than fifty people, making it ideal for intimate performances. A black curtain will hide the judge’s bench behind the simply-lit performers who will read from music stands. The courtroom will otherwise stay intact, allowing it to still be used as a film set (Have you seen The Fugitive?). Though not a traditional theater space, the courtroom benefits from high ceilings, seating, and is already rated for occupancy. The initial use of the courtroom space is ultimately an experiment, but it may turn into something more. The WCTNW will produce their 2014 season with the continued help of the Spaceworks program, but whether or not they will be in the courtroom remains to be seen. In any case, take some time to celebrate Art at Work month this November with the Working Class Theatre Northwest!

Working Class Theatre Northwest’s Free Line-up for the Month of November:
Nov. 8, 7:30p.m. Zoo Story; 9:30p.m. Space Puffs!
Nov. 9, 7:30p.m. Sunset Limited
Nov. 15, 7:30p.m. Life in the Theatre; 9:30p.m. Space Puffs!
Nov. 16, 7:30p.m. Enron
Nov. 22, 7:30p.m. School for Lies; 9:30p.m. Space Puffs!
Nov. 23, 7:30p.m. Tracers

3rd floor Court Room
Old Post Office
1102 A St. Tacoma, WA
(evening theatre-goers must use 11th St. entrance)

And SAVE THE DATE for Working Class Theatre Northwest’s Black Friday Gala! Your support at this event will help them launch their 2014 season. Friday November 29 at 7:30pm for selected scenes from our season, a silent auction/fundraiser, and video interviews/slide show. Be there!

Working Class Theatre Northwest:
Managing Director, Christina Hughes; Artistic Director, T.S. Samland; Associate Artistic Director, Luke Amundson; Web-isode Coordinator, Bunny Seagraves; Webmaster, Gabe Hacker; Associate Directors, Robert McConkey, Tim Shute, and Tom Sanders.

Special thanks to building owner Pat Rhodes, A Street Associates LLC and project manager John Hunt, Power Property Consultants for making this Spaceworks Special Project possible.

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