Thursday, July 13, 2006

Edgy Theatre Production

Local blogger and writer Chall Gray has started a theatre production company, Metabolism Productions, with writer Devin Walsh (both have published stories on Flasheville). Their debut production, Dizzy, will run this weekend and next Thursday-Sunday. Check it out for edgy, all-local, fun theatre.

I'm feeling lazy, so I'm going to re-print the Asheville Citizen-Times article:
published July 13, 2006 12:15 am

ASHEVILLE - A new Asheville theater company will stage its debut production Friday with a series of four one-act plays written by local residents.

Metabolism Productions' show "Dizzy" will be performed at 35Below Theatre during the next two weekends.

Two local college students with a passion for writing and theater started the company because they want to see more local plays produced.

Devin Walsh, the 26-year-old president of Metabolism Productions, is a student at UNC Asheville. Chall Gray, 21, attends Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College. The two met at a local Toastmasters meeting and recognized in each other similar literary ambitions.

"We figured that if our plays weren't being produced, there were a lot of other people whose work wasn't being produced," Gray said. "We want to fill that niche."

Gray and Walsh describe the plays in "Dizzy" as a verbose, quirky, and funny quartet. "Love, From A to Z" by Gray is "a surreal love story of a couple learning the ABC's of love, literally." "Rochester & Pennyboil" by Walsh explores "how far two ambitious playwrights will go to achieve ultimate fame." "Recalling Paradise" by Jaye Bartell and a work by UNCA professor David Hopes round out the program.

Interestingly, three of the four playwrights have day jobs selling books. Bartell works at Malaprop's, Gray at The Reader's Corner and Walsh at UNCA's bookstore.

Before trying to break into the theater scene, Walsh started a literary magazine called Metabolism at UNCA. The third issue is due out this week, with a run of 3,000 copies, half of which will be distributed on campus and half around Asheville.

"The name 'Metabolism' works because your metabolism takes everything you put in your body and converts it into energy," Walsh said. "We don't differentiate between Cap'n Crunch and carrots. We just want to put local, creative work out there."

The 25 people involved in the productions are all volunteers, though Walsh and Gray ultimately hope to produce paid, professional productions. They're already planning their next production of one-act plays written and performed entirely by women.

"We think we're just the two men to make that happen," Walsh said.

"We're pretty ambitious," Walsh said. "I want the magazine and the production company to survive for a long time. And if there's a possibility for us to expand into other arenas, such as publishing or film, we will."

What: "Dizzy," a series of one-act plays by Metabolism Productions

When: Performances are Friday to Sunday and July 20-23 starting at 8 p.m. and 2 p.m. on Sundays.

Where: 35Below Theatre is at 35 Walnut St., below the Asheville Community Theatre.

Tickets: $10 per person, $5 for students with identification, on sale at The Reader's Corner, Malaprop's Bookstore & Café and the Asheville Community Theatre box office.

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