Blake Hammond to Lead Friends Always Creating Theatre's LOST BOY Reading, 10/14
Friends Always Creating Theatre lives-up to its name as they open their 5th season. They are one of the most prolific companies in New York City and will start this season by presenting a One-Night Only Staged Reading of "The Lost Boy" by the late Ron Paolillo (aka Ron Pallilo) starring Broadway's Blake Hammond and Guiseppe Bausilio.
Better known as FACT, Friends Always Creating Theatre began in 2009 with a production of "Gutter Star" an original musical in the NY International Fringe Festival when friends, Jack Dyville and David Gillam Fuller invited several friends who were working actors, directors and playwrights to join them in this endeavor.
Five years later, the company kicks-off the 2013-2014 season with the brilliant "The Lost Boy" written by Paolillo, who was a friend of Artistic Director, Dyville for more than 40 years, long before Paolillo became a household name as 'Arnold Horshack' in the popular 1970s TV sitcom, "Welcome Back Kotter". As Dyville states, "It only makes sense that I would very much want to honor Ron since he was a friend for so many years."
Paolillo passed away August 14, 2012 unexpectedly from a heart attack while teaching TV, film and theatre at a professional arts school in Florida. "Ron had such a love-affair with the work he was writing while at the same time performing for me in my autobiographical play, 'Daddy Was the Biggest Stage Mother in Texas' - playing Daddy in a 2004 Fringe Festival production", Dyville said, "but it wasn't until this past August 14, 2013 when Playscripts Inc published his play on the first anniversary of his death that I read it and was totally mesmerized by the story, the dialogue, and the over-all flavor and theme. It is beautiful and I knew FACT had to produce it."
With the rights secured, Dyville began to think of his cast and another old friend, his very first male dance student when he taught in Texas in the early 1980s, Blake Hammond, came to mind as the perfect actor for the dual roles, Captain Hook and The Old Crow. "Blake was more than happy to help an old friend and former instructor in presenting this outstanding work." Dyville commented. Hammond is currently featured in Broadway's "First Date" at the Longacre Theatre and has appeared in 9 Broadway musicals starring as Edna in "Hairspray", and performing in "Sister Act" (Ernie), "Elf "(Chadwick), "Billy Elliot" (Braithwaite), "The Lion King" (Pumba), "The Music Man" (Quartet), "Kiss Me Kate" (Gangster US), and "On the Town" (Uperman/MC). Off Broadway, he was seen in 6 shows, most notably the Drama Desk and Obie winning "When Pigs Fly". He has been featured in six national tours. His many Film/TV credits include the recent films "Handsome Harry" and "An Englishman in New York" and a current web series about four couples in group therapy at ThenWeGotHelp.com. Blake has received the LA Critics, Carbonell Award, Chicago After Dark Awards, and the Indie Soap Award.
It was Hammond that then suggested Giuseppe Bausilio for the roles of Peter Pan and Davey Barrie as Blake had become friends with Giuseppe during the Chicago production of "Billy Elliot" and their friendship continued when Bausilio joined the final three years on Broadway rotating in the title role of Billy.Currently the performer is 16 years old. He is from Bern, Switzerland, where his parents own two ballet schools and a Theater. Bausilio was spotted at the 2009 YAGP Ballet Finals in NYC and was immediately signed to play the role of Billy Elliott in two National tours of the production before making his Broadway debut. He and his Parents now live in NYC and they have opened a third Ballet School here. He has won competitions in not only dance but voice and cello in Switzerland, France, Italy and the U.S. and placed 2nd at the World Ballet Competition YAGP, 2012. Bausilio just made his first major film "Dead Man Down" and got to show his acting skills as a "Young man" and is thrilled to be acting with FACT.
"The Lost Boy" tells the story of writer James M. Barrie. Despite finding success and fame as a writer, Barrie is dissatisfied with his work and his life. He returns to his hometown in Scotland to visit his mother, who still blames him for the long-ago death of his older brother in a skating pond. Haunted by the tragic accident and his mother's harsh words, James slowly begins to confront his family's tragic past with the help of an unexpected friendship and his own gift for storytelling. This fictionalized account of the birth of Peter Pan warms the hearts of audiences everywhere who remember the magic and mystery of The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up. David S. Skipper, President of Anon: The J.M. Barrie Society says, "Paolillo's play is a magical, exhilarating flight of endearing wonder into the heart of defiant youth through the core of ageless innocence and is destined to become a classic."