THE HISTORY BOYS (& A GIRL): BEHIND THE GREASEPAINT WITH THE CAST OF 1776

What a year it’s been. As we conclude our wildly successful homecoming season returning to our residency at the new Cultural Center in Havre de Grace, welcome back to the most recent installment of BEHIND THE GREASEPAINT, my blog that explores for our audiences all the aspects of theatre behind what is presented as a final product—the designs, the work, and in this, my follow up interview to the delightful sit down we had with The Marvelous Wonderettes, the extremely experienced and talented cast of our current hit show, 1776. Directed by Laurie Sentman Starkey and music directed by R. Christopher Rose, what sounds like a dull, dreary textbook lesson in how the Declaration of Independence was created and signed is anything but that as we explore through song and scene the events that led up to this critical episode in US history, and the events that almost curtailed it permanently. Add to this a very vibrant cast of historical characters brought to vivid life by an even more colorful cast of actors who I am privileged to work with. Join me with Tom Hartzell, David T. Wills, Barbara Hartzell, Todd Starkey, Michael Bevard, John Desmone, and WXCY radio personality Tyler Daniel as I ask (and answer) a few questions to learn a little about them and the time we’ve all spent together recreating this epic event in US history.

I want to thank all of you for taking the time to do my second in a series of cast interviews. I’ve praised all your talents the whole run. Could you all tell us quickly who you play, and some of your other Tidewater credits and accomplishments elsewhere? Who here have you worked with before?

DAVID: I play Ben Franklin. I did do a show here years ago but barely remember it being from Pennsylvania.   [BTGP: It was Blood Brothers, circa 2009.]

TOM:  I play John Adams. I have been in two other shows here at Tidewater. I played Albert Peterson in Bye Bye Birdie, some 10 years ago, and was Professor Plum in Without a Clue right before 1776. I have done shows with my wife (mostly playing husband & wife) and shows with David, YEARS ago, the last being Bye Bye Birdie at Covered Bridge. Mark directed me in Without a Clue. I don’t think I’ve worked with anyone els

DAVID: And of course, yes, Tom before. Years ago.

JOHN: I play John Hancock, still from Mass, and still President of Congress. This is my Tidewater debut. I’ve directed over 100 productions and had featured roles in about 60 other shows. I’ve worked with Laurie before but switch the roles. She was a wonderful Mother Superior in a production of Nunsense that I directed. I’ve worked with a number of others in the cast before but mostly as their director – Ray, Josh, Albert, Brian, Will, Mark, & Barb. I’ve been directed by Todd and had the pleasure to have Chris [Rose, 1776’s Musical Director] musically direct a number of my shows.

MICHAEL: I play Edward Rutledge, and my only other Tidewater credit is Javert in Les Misérables. I worked with Laurie, Todd, Tyler and Stanton in that production.

TODD: I play John Dickinson. At Tidewater, onstage I have played Rapunzel’s Prince in Into the Woods, Mr, Grey in Rent, Czolgosz in Assassins, the Pimp and others in Les Misérables, King Arthur in Spamalot, and the Confederate Captain (with the best military bling) in The Civil War..

MARK: We fixed that here. #Who’sSouthernNow?

TODD: As for directing at Tidewater, I’ve directed Don’t Drink the Water, The Odd Couple, The Rainmaker, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, Assassins, Of Mice and Men, and Avenue Q. Elsewhere, my favorite roles include Kaffee in A Few Good Men and Tom Sawyer in Big River. And of course 3 productions of 1776. In our cast, I have directed as well acted opposite many of them.

BARBARA: I play Abigail Adams. My Tidewater credits are Beth in Merrily We Roll Along, Cinderella in Into the Woods, Rosie in Bye, Bye Birdie, and Lily in The Secret Garden. I also stage managed Without a Clue. As I was rolled out of the delivery room from giving birth to my daughter, Laurie and Mark also had me fill in for 5 performances as Grace in Annie!

MARK: You were a radiant post partum Grace Farrell.

BARBARA: I feel blessed to have played all of my bucket list roles over the years (with the possible exception of Sandy in Grease, which I hope to pick up at Senior Star Showcase), but my biggest accomplishment in the arts, I feel, is the 6 years I spent developing and directing the drama program at Mountain Christian School. I absolutely love going to see my former students perform. I am afraid to answer the question of who I have worked with before, for fear of leaving someone out, so let’s just say this cast is equally full of old friends and new. A fun fact though, is that I share the stage with two of my former 1776 directors and one of my former 1776 music directors.

TYLER: I play The Legendary Thomas Jefferson. My only other Tidewater credit is the Legendary Enjolras in Les Misérables. I began doing music theater in 1994 at different summer theater programs, then branched out to doing dinner theater throughout the region. I went to Baltimore School for the Arts for High School and majored in acting, then went to college at The University of the Arts in Philly and majored in Musical Theater. I had full intentions of moving to New York after college, but moved back home to make some money before moving north. I landed a gig at 103.7 WXCY in Havre de Grace and was then bitten by the radio bug. I have been working there since 2004 on the morning show, which is now entitled “The Breakfast Blend.” Since I’ve been gone from the theater community for so long, there is a whole new regime of talented actors in the area . I have, however, worked with John Desmone in our Dinner Theater days, Michael Bevard, Stan Zacker and Todd Starkey were all in Les Miz, and I’ve done numerous shows with Ray Lawson, dating back to 1994. I was 12 then. This means Ray Lawson is old.

MARK: I play Richard Henry Lee from Virginia, and this is my 15th year with Tidewater Players. I’ve played dozens of roles here, from Rooster Hannigan in Annie (twice), defending champion of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee Chip Tolentino (twice), Glen the butthead fiancé in The Wedding Singer, and the (as Todd so eloquently pointed out, the significantly less blinged out) Union Captain in The Civil War, to Lumiere in Beauty & the Beast and my all-time favorite ever, Corny Collins in Hairspray, where I shared the stage with my extremely talented daughter Hayley in her mainstage lead debut as Penny. I’ve shared the stage with Todd as my brother here in Into the Woods and my nemesis the Southern Captain in the Civil War, but we go back to the old Towsontowne Dinner Theatre days also where I met him and Laurie. Barbara was Cinderella to my Prince in Into the Woods, and Mrs. Potts to my Lumiére in Beauty & the Beast, and I’ve directed her in She Loves Me and Chess. Never shared a stage with the rest of these guys, but John has directed me in numerous shows, including my first professional summer stock production of Grease. Tyler and Michael I costumed in Les Misérables in the final show at the old opera house, and Tom starred in my first original play as Prof. Plum in Without a Clue. Of course Congress if filled with old co-stars and friends.

BARBARA:  But I couldn’t help but notice you left out the fact that you directed me in Mary Poppins as well….

MARK:  Omigod! I did! Freudian ommission! With all the minions of Hell at Cecil CC involved in that horrible process up at Milburn Stone, can you blame me for blocking it out?

Many of you, as many actors do, have a deep connection and long history with this show. Who’s a vet and who’s a virgin? How many times have you been involved with the show, what other roles have you vets played, and why does this show resonate so strongly with you. For the vets, how do different productions vary or stay consistent?

MICHAEL:  This is my first production of 1776.

MARK:  I’m a virgin. I enthusiastically sat down to watch the movie when I was in high school and couldn’t get through it. I’ve only ever seen it once, with Barbara, John, and Ray [Lawson], and enjoyed it much more than I thought, but I never needed to do it. I did turn down one production, when Todd was directing it right after I had been cast in my (then) dream role of Josh Baskin in Big and he asked if I’d be interested in dropping out of that and playing some backrow delegate from whatever colony, and I was like “I’m Josh Baskin, [may have been an expletive here]!!” Richard Henry Lee is a blast but this is probably a one and out for me. Did it, it’s on the resume.

TYLER: I am a virgin….to this material. However, the nostalgia fanatic in me thoroughly enjoys the fun fact that I first saw this show in my 5th grade teacher’s class. My 5th grade teacher was Laurie Starkey—the Director of this show!

TOM: This is my first time in this show. I only ever wanted to play John Adams and even though I auditioned four other times, I never did the show. Of course three of those times I was in my 20s and not really old enough to play Adams. I also put that I would only accept that role, but I did get offered Richard Henry Lee once and turned it down. In hindsight, I probably should have said yes. It would have been fun.

MARK: You’d have been right.

TOM: This is my favorite musical of all times. I loved it when my parents’ theatre group did it in 1976 (I think it was) and my Dad played John Adams. Since then, I own the movie, I have seen it once on Broadway the revival cast (Brent Spiner – NOT GOOD) In Ford’s Theatre Brooks Ashmanikas (Good, except sometimes he looked gay), my Dad play John Adams again, and two other community productions.

BARBARA: This being my 5th time in 1776, I am a vet. I have played Martha twice, and this is my third time playing Abigail. I really enjoy playing a real life, historical figure, and only having to share a dressing room with one other woman is a perk as well! For me, the dynamic between Adams and Franklin has varied the most in each production. I think the real life dynamic between the actors playing those roles has a lot to do with that. Some actors choose to soften Adams from time to time, not just play the frustration, which plays heavily into the dynamic with Abigail as well.

JOHN: I’ve been associated with 1776 now nine times. I’ve played John Adams seven times and directed it three times, so, yes, I directed myself two of those times but had already played the role a number of times so felt comfortable doing both at that point. I do love the show. Part of that is that I did one of my most favorite roles so often. As a matter of fact, for the longest time that was the only role I did since I was working and directing a lot and didn’t have much time to perform (and I didn’t have to learn new lines – that was a challenge when I aged out of Adams and had to learn other roles – yikes). I think the quality of the productions has depended on the actors in the show since it’s pretty hard to get too different with it – and I don’t think one should.

TODD: This is my 4th time with 1776, the previous 3 as director- 1989 at TTDT and 1997 and 2002 at Cockpit. I love this show because of the American History piece.

DAVID: This is the third time I’ve been onstage doing 1776 and one other where I musical directed. Prior parts I did Chase (and had nothing to do with me being fat) and Franklin one other time. When I musical directed, I also played in the pit. When we got to scene 3, the band went outside and played football. Otherwise the other two that I did were pretty different. It is very difficult getting 24 adult men to do it. But I do feel the show tends to have a close cast because of the long Congress scenes. My favorite point in history is this time period. My mom loved this show and movie so every year we would watch it on July 4. That was like 20 years. Then we both would read up on what really happened. And being from Philly, I read up so much on Franklin, and others from PA, especially since my ancestor John Morton signed it from PA. My mom had reunions with the Mortons of PA at the Morton homestead in Ridley, PA. I could not get enough of the history. Plus I was so curious what was true in the show and what wasn’t.

BTGP: Scene 3 is known as being the longest stretch of any musical not to contain a song, right?

DAVID: Yes, that’s right. I think it’s like 35-40 minutes—highlighted by a few Franklin zingers.

TOM: No, highlighted by Adams beating the crap out of Dickinson.

MARK: I know that’s right.

JOHN: Run time depends on the production. It can seem much longer than 35-40 minutes.

DAVID: [Looking it up] Wikipedia says it’s generally over 30 minutes, and on Broadway they allowed the pit players to leave and come back. Having the musicians leave for 30 minutes is better than having the violinist snore loudly off stage.

[BTGP: Yeah, that happened last weekend….]

Who here is a history buff and what are your favorite specialty eras of history

TODD: I am a mini-history buff, liking the era from Revolution to Civil War

JOHN: I love this period of history. I’ve read all of David M.’s books on the period as well as the book the musical Hamilton is based on. It has always impressed me because you realize what so many were willing to give up and potentially lose for this cause. I’m not sure there are many now who would – in fact just the opposite – what can they get out of it. 

MICHAEL: I’m not really a history buff

TOM: I LOVE history. My favorite time period is the Civil War, but I like this period as well. 

BARBARA:  My specialty would be the fashions of Downton Abbey, so I’ll sit this one out.

MARK:  I love history, but the American Revolution is way down on my scale of expertise. I’m way more versed in the intrigue of Tudor/Elizabethan England, the tragedy of the Civil War, and the debauchery of Ancient Rome. So I’ve learned a lot preparing and rehearsing this show, which is fun.

TYLER: I am certainly not what I would call a history buff, but I am a fan of the nostalgia in the worst way. Anything from the 70s, 80s or 90s just give me all of the feels. I do feel, as many of my cast mates have said, that I was born in the wrong era. You could slide me into the 50s or 60s any day and I would be perfectly content. Just keep me out of the draft.

MARK: Yeah, I still maintain you were there. You’re really a 50 year old man stuck in that semi-youthful body.

We’ve all had to do a little research at some point for our character (as a director, I hope). Tell us about what you’ve learned about your character, some fact the rest of us might not know, and how what you’ve learned historically coincides with how they are portrayed here semi-fictionally here.

DAVID: How accurate is this? Not too much. First the Declaration and Independence were two separate events. PA was a deciding vote but they talked Dickenson and one other PA delegate to not show up for the vote. That swayed PA. Franklin founded the first anti-slavery society after Independence. Stuff like that.

TODD: I did a lot of research on the characters when I was a director. I remember going to the library, looking up articles in encyclopedias, then making photo copies for the actors. All pre-internet for me, at least in 1989 and 1997. But this time around, I pretty much just went off of what i remember about the role from earlier. I didn’t do any new research

TOM: Even though it is not very accurate, it is neat to speak some of the actual words these historical figures spoke. I know that John Adams & Thomas Jefferson HATED each other for a LOOOOOONG time, especially when they were both fighting over becoming President. They did eventually meet up and I think it’s kinda cool they both died on the same day.

BARBARA: Abigail’s material in 1776 came directly from the letters she and her husband shared, so she is written on point. I was surprised to learn that, when her husband’s relationship with Thomas Jefferson became strained, she corresponded with Jefferson as well, to try to bridge the gap. I think I am a strong, opinionated wife and mother, like Abigail, and my husband is playing my husband, so that part is easy! The most difficult part, for me, is that all of my scenes are letters; it’s all in John’s head, so I can’t physically interact with anyone, including John.

TYLER: I think the most shocking revelation to me is that the man who campaigned to abolish slavery, not only had slaves of his own, but was sleeping with them too! I call it fake news.

MICHAEL: Rutledge was definitely a slave owner who worked to have African Americans expelled from the continental army. He was told to oppose Lee’s resolution and he was the youngest man to sign the Declaration. He and Adams didn’t get along.

MARK: I’ve learned the Richard Henry Lee may have been the character most short shrifted in our history books. He was one of the earliest influences pushing for American Independence, and very influential in all the early discussions and proposals. The most interesting facts I’ve learned about him are that the biggest reason we don’t know as much of him as we should is because when the other founding fathers died, their wives–Martha Washington, Abigail Adams, Martha Jefferson, Dolly Madison–made it their goal to further their late husbands’ legacies, securing organizations to preserve their estates and promote their history. But Anne Lee was a little like Eva Gabor in Green Acres (“Darling I love you, but give me Park Avenue”) and only wanted to get back to the big city and start life over, so critics kind of say it’s her fault. I even watched a CNN book lecture that focused on the fact that Lee may have not only proposed Independence but actually written the early draft of the Declaration. With all those accomplishments though, in 1776, he is reduced to playing a comic buffoon, a vain, dim-witted clown who is played as a puppet by Franklin to meet his and Adams’ needs. Which is fine by me, because “Clown with a Big Song” seems to be the role I do best.

JOHN: Speaking as the oldest person in the show, I thought Hancock would work but turns out I’ve out lived him by about 10 years. Oh, well.

Barbara and I have (half) joked that most of us are just playing ourselves in those production, all the way from Tom as John Adams, down to Young Josh Starkey as the Courier. The easy answer being “good casting”, how would you describe the fit of your character to you. How are you the most like the character you play, what is different or difficult about playing your character, and what strengths as an actor/performer does call into play?

MARK: I kind of just answered that. “Clown with a Big Song” is a repeating credit on my resume.

TOM: REALLY??? Do you really need me to answer this question???

DAVID: Do I fit my character? I probably would say the other way around. Ben was kinda old at this point and probably not as sprite, but I used my humor as his. I just hoped it worked. Who is most like their character? Tom Hartzell. Duh.

TODD: Both of us are hot heads and are sticklers for what we believe in, very hard to convince we are wrong. Differences? Well I wouldn’t go after anyone with a walking stick.

MARK: Give yourself a few years….

JOHN: I have grown into the role but it’s pretty much me living inside the character. I’m very much someone who tries to find middle ground on issues and am liked, I think, by a wide variety of people for not being too strident – at least not too often. I have been elected President a number of times over my life, just not of Congress.

TYLER: This role is the farthest thing from myself. Jefferson is the quietest man in Congress and I have a lot to say. I, also, have never been considered a great writer or a bookworm and that is a lot of what makes Thomas tick.

MICHAEL: This is not an easy part for me to play. Rutledge is the antithesis of who I am and who I aspire to be. The saddest part for me is thinking/knowing that there are still people in the world that think this way. The costume and the wig allow me to inhabit the character. I utilize my anger at the injustices of the world and people like Rutledge to become Rutledge who is angry at the prospect of losing his “precious slavery”.

Which person among us is most like the character they portray on stage? Everyone MUST answer.

BARBARA: Tom Hartzell. I don’t even feel the need to elaborate.

TOM: To be DIFFERENT (and because I haven’t worked with most of these people before), Barbara is very much like Abigail. Family Oriented, strong willed, plays at cards badly, thinks too much, and pigeon-toed. And I love every one of these qualities about her. Except the card playing.

MARK: There are many answers, like Tom is also obnoxious and disliked, and Tyler is a lover, not a writer, but I may have to go with Todd Starkey, who is pretty much a, let’s just say “devil’s advocate”, and will beat you down with the best of them. Congress is just like a typical Tidewater board meeting.

TYLER: Hmm….this is not an easy one to answer. I’m going Mark Briner on this one. Funny, loud, and snarky!

JOHN:  David as Franklin and Ray [Lawson] as Wilson.

TODD: Stanton [Zacker, as Delegate George Read from Delaware]?

For the vets or history buffs, how accurate do you consider the events as portrayed in the script? Any dramatic licenses they took? What is the most glowing inaccuracy of which you are aware?

MARK: Other than not everyone was there to sign on the 4th, including Lee, this isn’t my strong historical suit. I’ll defer to the vets.

BARBARA:  I’m not a history buff, but Martha Jefferson coming to visit her husband is the most glowing inaccuracy to me

TODD: Most glaring inaccuracy is that the signers did not sign on July 4th. Most signed on August 2nd, while others signed later on, one I think was months later.

JOHN: There are liberties taken but for dramatic reasons it all works. It could be a bit shorter but I think, when done well, the audience gets into it and it works

TOM: I think I answered this one above, but you go to see musical theatre to be entertained, so I don’t really have a problem with the dramatic licenses.

If you could play any other role in the show, who would it be?

JOHN:  Well, if I could save time in a bottle, I’d have played Adams forever. Other that that, I like Wilson and Thomson as roles.

DAVID: Any other parts I would love to do? Adams but those days are over. A theatre asked me to do it when I was 33 but I was in another sho

TODD: Of course I would love to play Adams. But if I was talented enough vocally, playing Rutledge would really be something. But I could never sing that song. It’s too powerful of a piece and Michael just brings the house down with his rendition. It’s extraordinary.

BARBARA: Richard Henry Lee. It’s the part I’ve really wanted all five times I’ve done the show. I sing the crap out of it in the car

MARK:  I’d have to say I might like to take a crack at Rutledge, only because he gets all those great, long Julia Sugarbaker rants to go off on. But I could never deliver the song nearly as great as Michael. Again, probably a one and out show for me.

TOM:  I’m not sure I would want to play any other ro

TYLER: I would love to play Hopkins. Everyone likes to play a drunk.

 

Who is the most giving actor? Who can you count on to enhance your performance. And who are you most afraid would trip you up or leave you hanging, deliberately or not?

BARBARA: I can’t really answer this because I only have scenes with one person. Tom for both by default.

TOM: The two people I interact one on one with the most: Barbara (It’s downright easy to play being in love with her) and David (I think our interactions play as genuine and some of them give me chills. Especially when he yells at me after I tell him to renew his credentials.)

JOHN: I think Albert [Boeren, as Custodian McNair] does a great job in this role, which could be pretty much a throw away but in his hands is anything but. I like working with Nate [Stauffer, as Secretary Thomson] and think he is really smart and could save all of us if necessary. And, since I screwed up the other night, I’ll have to say I would worry the most about me although I did try to figure out how to get us back on track. And who else could have come up with “anyone else” when the Courier was late to enter?

DAVID: Who do I depend on the most? Tom. I know he knows his lines and mine so if I struggle, I know he will get me back on. I also worked with Barb and Todd. When I musical directed it, Todd was the director. Ray was in that too. Otherwise I am a stranger in a strange land

TODD: Well, Tom enhances my performance every night. And holy shit, so does David as Franklin. We may not get in each others’ faces, but there are wonderful moments in both acts where his brilliant performance stops me in my tracks. And without raising his dukes! Who might trip me up, well, he might trip us all up if we aren’t careful (but he is not on this thread).

TOM: The answer to your last statement could be one of two people. But that’s the joys of live theatre!

MICHAEL: My performance is enhanced by the entire cast. I’m inspired by your dedication to the production and the craft. The one I worry about tripping me up is myself

MARK: For my few brief scenes, David IS Ben Franklin and feeds me life and enrgy in those scenes. Flip side, Tyler as Jefferson is most likely to make me crack up like Harvey Korman to his Tim Conway on stage. He understands my sick humor too well.

TYLER: I think the most giving actor on the stage is Michael Bevard. I might have a different answer for you if I interacted with EVERYONE, but amongst those that I have dialogue, Michael always gives me a delivery to chew on. Mark Briner and David Wills win the award for tripping me up. We have too many off stage jokes about the show that, no matter how professional we are when it comes to our craft, sometimes it’s just too easy to break.

DAVID: May I add that Tyler would be the one who would trip me up.

MARK: That’s kind of a given.

Barbara and Tom, being married in real life and on stage, what elements of your marriage do you bring to John & Abigail? What insights into their relationship does it bring?

BARBARA: We are a lot like John and Abigail, so it’s easy to bring that “we’ve been a team for a while” loving dynamic to the scenes. I would also say that each of them asking for what they want (salt peter/pins), him giving in verbally first, but her actually executing the job first is eerily accurate

TOM: Barbara pretty much nailed this one. I’m not so sure we weren’t John and Abigail.

 

Tyler, you perform as a radio host every morning, and you perform with a country rock band many weekends. How is performing in this show different than those other careers?


TYLER
: Performing in this show, as in playing in most all theater shows differ because I am playing a role/character. Both band and radio has me being candid, vulnerable and myself. I will say that it is much easier to perform at night, as opposed to waking up at 4 a.m. to perform. It’s not always easy, but it is always worth it. There certainly is joy and a nice escape in playing someone else three nights a week. It’s fun to “play!”

Let’s end on a nice note: Pay someone–or several–a compliment about their performance.

MARK:  I have to pay every one of you a compliment, even Carly who I only get to swap mikes with and watch on TV. There are also a LOT of great performances that could be overlooked in Congress. I also think Ray Lawson is endearing as Judge Wilson and Nate Stauffer is SO talented and reliable as Secretary Thomson. And Kenny Williamson cracks me up as drunkard Hopkins. There’s really not one weak link in the large cast. As for you guys, all your choices are solid and strong and exactly what I would want to see as a director. But if I have to single anyone out, again it’s David as just the quintessential professional on stage, and Barbara and Michael for their glorious voice

BARBARA: This show is so well cast that I could lay a heap of praise across the board! What a blessing! I do have to say that watching my husband shine every night in his dream role is a privilege! I also am glad to finally do a show with Tyler; I have a tremendous amount of respect for him as a performer. I just wish we were actually onstage together in this show! (It’s OK, we WILL do Baby together!) I would also love the chance to sing with Michael sometime; what a voice!

TOM: This show has lived up to my expectations. I think all of the people on this thread do an INCREDIBLE JOB. Besides Barbara & David (spoken about above) I love dancing with Carly, rolling my eyes at Briner, verbally abusing Tyler, arguing with Todd, throwing (and receiving) death stares from Michael, and I appreciate the snippets of advice from John. I would be grateful to work with any one of you again. THANK YOU all for helping make my #1 bucket list role a reality and a great experience.

TYLER: I have to say…knowing that this was Tom’s dream role was really special to witness. To watch him grow the character to giving 110% even at rehearsals was so refreshing. Not to sound too sappy here, but in a world full of lazy and “hurry up and get it done”, to watch someone create to their fullest potential helped to raise everyone up. I’ve always heard that a mediocre actor can always be made to look fantastic when they are working with great actors around them because of the work they put into their process. I certainly feel like Tom did this for many of u

TOM: I appreciate that Tyler. It also helps me to have the surrounding talent and you guys make it easier.

TODD: I also must give a huge kudos to Tom! Damn, what a great piece of acting to be opposite. It’s been wonderful going toe-to-toe with you every night!

DAVID:  Who are you people?

TOM:  Shut up Franklin!


DAVID
:  Oh real nice. Kiss your wife with that mouth?

TOM: When I can actually see her and not just in my head

TYLER:  So pigheaded…..

MARK: #LifeImitatesArt

I appreciate you all taking the time to share your unique experience and outlook with us. You have definitely made 1776 an unexpected event for me. I understand why there is a block of actors who are so dedicated to it, from the history, to the lessons, to the talent it draws.  Let’s have a great closing weekend, and I look forward to watching and working with all of you again.

Tickets to Tidewater Players presentation of 1776 are available at the link above.