Author: Michael Lenehan

Chapter 4: Beatrice

In late summer 2013, when David Frank knew for sure he would be directing Much Ado, he didn’t have to think about who would be his Beatrice: Colleen Madden would. She is one of the company’s stars, a small woman with a big voice, an extraordinary actress. I saw her take Benedick’s arm in playful […]

Chapter 2: Play in the Woods

Back in the days when whimsy was thought to be a desirable quality for internet addresses, APT’s website was playinthewoods.org. The woods, and trekking through them from the parking lot to the “Up the Hill” stage, have always been an important part of the company’s identity. And despite its unlikely location just south of Spring […]

Chapter One: Much Ado

Out in the woods, a trumpet sounds. Then sounds again, louder and closer. Up on the bridge that looms over center stage, young Hero appears in a pouffy peach dress. She looks off toward the sound as though she is waiting for something. Could this be it? Music begins—an oboe line floating prettily over a […]

Our First Review

Much Ado has been reviewed by Kirkus Reviews, whose writer astutely observes that it “shows us with rare clarity how a professional company prepares a production.” Conclusion: the book is “A series of bright, clear photographs of what the author saw when he pulled aside the curtain in a Wisconsin Oz.” Read the whole thing here.

In Stores Now

…or at least in one of our favorite stores, Arcadia Books in Spring Green. John Christensen, the manager there, says his shipment has arrived and he’ll start selling today, September 23. If you’re not close enough to stop in, order from Arcadia and get free shipping with the code freeship16. The book should be available at […]

Coming Fall 2016 From Agate Midway

A new book about acting, Shakespeare, and making theater, based on American Players Theatre’s 2014 production of Much Ado About Nothing. Now available for pre-order. Read more here.  “In school they teach you that collaboration is everybody doing the same thing. It’s not true. Nobody’s doing the same thing. We all have different things in […]

My New Project

I spent much of spring and summer 2014 in Spring Green, Wisconsin, following American Players Theatre‘s production of Much Ado About Nothing–researching what I hope will someday be a long immersion piece on the art and craft of theater. Meanwhile here’s a little taste, a profile of David Frank, the artistic director, who is retiring […]

Loyola Alumni Weekend

Jerry Harkness and I will be meeting and greeting and signing copies of Ramblers at two events connected with Loyola’s Alumni Weekend for 2014. This Friday, June 27, we’ll be at a reception for the classes of ’63 and ’64 and new alumni at the 63 Bar and Grill (formerly Hamilton’s), located at 6341 N. Broadway. That […]

New Comcast Show on ’63 Ramblers

CN100, the Comcast Network, has produced a new documentary for Black History Month, “1963 Loyola Ramblers,” showing tonight at 7:00 and at various other times this month. Visit www.cn100.tv for upcoming show times. You can also find the program with Xfinity On Demand under “Sports Features” in the CN100 folder.