Aurora Theatre Opens Harvel Lab Series with the shrewd comedy Walter Cronkite is Dead


On the heels of their record breaking production of Les Misérables, a new comedy with a very intriguing title opens Aurora Theatre’s 2013-2014 Harvel Lab Series: Walter Cronkite is Dead, which runs September 19  through October 6, 2013.

Walter Cronkite is Dead premiered in 2010 at Washington DC’s Signature Theatre where playwright Joe Calarco is an artistic associate. The play begins when a thunderstorm shuts down the entire East Coast, and Patty, a chatty, blue-collar southerner and Margaret, a reserved, educated Washingtonian, must sit and wait. Forced together, the strangers share a bottle of wine to pass the time. This insightful comedy demonstrates what might be possible if people from opposite sides of the aisle could stop shouting and take even one night to listen. The Aurora production stars powerhouse actresses, Suzi Award-winner Lala Cochran (Good People, Alliance Theatre; Spring Awakening, Actor’s Express) and Lane Carlock (Scary Movie 5, 2013 release; Frame 312, Alliance Theatre). This smart comedy is under the direction of Brian Clowdus, founder and Executive Artistic Director the critically-acclaimed Serenbe Playhouse. Upon entering the theater, audience members will be asked to choose a button out of a bag. The button will either be “red” or “blue” and will signify which political party that person supports for the duration of the show. (Don’t worry, audience members can switch back to their party of choice following the play.) Because this comedy is sure to encourage lively debate, Aurora Theatre will keep the bar open after the show.
About the Playwright
Joe Calarco is an accomplished writer and director in American theatre, best known as the adaptor/director of Shakespeare’s R&J. which ran for a year Off-Broadway, becoming the longest running version of Romeo and Juliet in New York history. It earned him a Lucille Lortel Award and the show later enjoyed a successful production at Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre. His reworking of Ring of Fire: the music of Johnny Cash toured the U.S. for over a year. Off Broadway credits include the world premiere of the musical In Transit, The Burnt Part Boys by Mariana Elder, Chris Miller and Nathan Tysen Floyd and Clea, and Under the Western Sky. He directed the critically acclaimed world premiere of the musical Sarah, Plain and Tall (book by Julia Jordan, music by Larry O’Keefe, lyrics by Nell Benjamin) at the Lucille Lortel and later expanded it to a two-Act version for Dallas Theatre Center. Other directing credits include: The Summer of the Swans, Boy, The Mistress Cycle, Fugitive Songs, and Bury the Dead.

Producer Quote
Aurora Theatre Producing Artistic Director Anthony Rodriguez, “More information is available to us at a moment’s notice than in any time in the history of the world. Yet we gravitate to the world of sound bites and skewed facts. Every person can maintain their opinion by finding a news anchor to support their personal ideology. I believe our society is clamoring for a return to civil discourse. It is through devoted research and thoughtful debate that we change as citizens and as human beings. I encourage us to truly listen when we converse, not simply wait for our turn to speak. I am certain Walter Cronkite did.”

“The play’s sermon against demonizing those with whom we disagree couldn’t be more relevant.” –Variety

“oil-meets-water comedy” — Washington Post

“…very funny, thoroughly charming…The play is a ninety-minute treasure chest that keeps revealing new gems of wisdom and humor, right to the end.” —North County Times San Diego

Programming in Aurora Theatre’s 2013-2014 Harvel Lab Series is possible through generous support from Georgia Gwinnett College. Walter Cronkite is Dead is sponsored by Members Auto Choice.

Cast & Crew

Lane Carlock  Margaret
Lala Cochran  Patty

Anthony P. Rodriguez  Producing Artistic Director
Ann-Carol Pence  Associate Producer
Brian Clowdus  Director
Tiffany Porter  Stage Manager
Britt Hultgren Ramroop S et Designer
James Helms  Lighting Design/Tech Director
Brittany Quigley  Costume Designer
Daniel Terry  Sound Designer/Assistant Technical Director
Liz Vitale  Props Designer
Sarah Thompson  Scenic Artist
Katie Pelkey  Company Manager

Walter Cronkite is Dead
By Joe Claraco
September 19 through October 6, 2013

Thursday trough Saturday at 8 p.m.
Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
Tickets $15