Interview: Marianne Savell of AS IT IS IN HEAVEN at Taproot Theatre

Show playing now through April 22nd

I sat down with Director Marianne Savell to talk about her most recent work on AS IT IS IN HEAVEN at Taproot Theatre. Here's what she had to say about the show and her process:

Q: The show covers a lot of themes. What do you think is the central message?

A: For me the central message is a challenge to all of us who are a part of a group: What am I going to do when a new person in the group comes along with a new point of view and a new way for the group to operate. It's an age old question and a universal challenge that we will more than likely face again and again in our lives. We continuously get opportunities to get better at it too.

Q: Which character do you find most interesting? Why?

A: I really adore each of the characters for who they are and what they add to the story. So I'll pick one...Sister Jane. Sister Jane is a newcomer who joined the Shakers because her husband gave up on the farm after all five of their children died before the age of six. She is in mourning, full of fear and rage. And because she doesn't have any options, she has to stick around, and yet, because of another newcomer who is experiencing something new and revolutionary, Sister Jane finds redemption, healing and hope.

Review: LES MISERABLES at The 5th Avenue Theatre
Jenny Vaughn Hall and Chloe Michele in
AS IT IS IN HEAVEN at Taproot Theatre
Photo Credit: Robert Wade

Q: Which character do you find most challenging? Why?

A: They all have their challenges, but probably the character of Sister Hannah who is the Eldress at the Shaker Village. She was brought over 10 years earlier to get the village in shape and has been very successful. We have to see who Sister Hannah was before, see how she handles the mounting issues with the newcomer who is experiencing Shakerism in a new way, all the way through her plans to get the village back under control and finally, what she does when she knows that this new movement is beyond her containing. It's tricky and a lot of fun to figure out and pull off.

Q: Why is this show important for audiences today?

A: The show is set in 1838 and completely timeless in its relevance. Beyond that, it's an exciting way to learn about the Shakers and American history. I know it's already set many an audience member in a deep dive on the Shakers and I think that's a good thing. We can learn much from them and let's face it, history is fascinating.


ArtsWest to Welcome New Managing Director Inji Kamel

The Board of Directors at ArtsWest has announced that Inji Kamel is joining the team as ArtsWest's new Managing Director effective May 22, 2023.  Her ties within the arts community, broad experience in theater management and production, and deep commitment to the same values ArtsWest holds made her a fabulous candidate for this position. The addition of Inji as Managing Director completes the ArtsWest team, and the company is planning for the future with vision and enthusiasm.

Review: HELLO, DOLLY! at Village Theatre

In the musical theater world, there are classics and then there are Classics (with the big “C”). Jerry Herman’s “Hello, Dolly!” is certainly a big “C” Classic and I’m here to fight anyone who says different. It’s a delicious throwback to the Golden Age of musicals and certainly a star vehicle for the right star. And speaking of the right star, the current production of “Dolly”, currently playing at Village Theatre, shows just how good this Classic can be with the incredible Bobbi Kotula in the title role who proves that she’s not a star, but a Star!

Review: UNNECESSARY FARCE at Driftwood Theater

UNNECESSARY FARCE at the Driftwood Theatre is a fast-paced, adrenaline-fueled, high-octane laugh-fest. If your funny bone is out of practice, this show will whip you into shape in no time. From slapstick, innuendo, deadpan, comedy of errors, and wordplay, UNNECESSARY FARCE finds a million different ways to make you laugh.What did our critic think of UNNECESSARY FARCE at Driftwood Theater?

Seattle Shakespeare to Present THE TEMPEST as 30th Anniversary Wooden O Production This Summer

This year's free Wooden O production will be The Tempest, directed by Leah Adcock-Starr. This summer marks the 30th anniversary of free, professional Shakespeare in the Parks from Wooden O! Performances begin July 6 and run through August 6 at parks around the Puget Sound area.

From This Author - Kelly Rogers Flynt

Born and educated in the South, Kelly Rogers Flynt has happily transitioned to life in the Pacific Northwest where she enjoys more rain and fewer mosquitos. She works as a director, choreographer,&nbs... (read more about this author)


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