Ever since William Shakespeare supposedly wrote several classic plays while in quarantine due to a bubonic-plague breakout in the early 1600s, live theater and pandemics have had a tempestuous relationship.
On one hand, live theater often acts as a critical community outlet for entertainment and social examination during times of difficulty. On the other hand, you have to be in the theater to experience the theater, which is impossible in times of social isolation such as the current coronavirus outbreak.
Now, Left Edge Theatre, Luther Burbank Center for the Arts’ award-winning resident theater company, is changing the way in which we experience local, live theater with its plan to stream events and productions online instead of onstage.
In the works are streaming presentations of past productions such as 2019’s world premiere of “Drumming With Anubis.” The hilarious supernatural crowd-pleaser, written by David Templeton and directed by David Yen, concerns a drum circle of friends who encounter an Egyptian God.
Left Edge will also soon stream a new version of their 2016 production of “A Steady Rain,” with actors Nick Sholley and Mike Schaeffer reprising their powerful performances from that original award-winning show.
In addition, Left Edge embraces the expression, “the show must go on,” with an online fundraising Season Showcase on May 16 and 17, in which Left Edge will present several scenes from shows they are considering for production and then ask the audience to vote for the shows they most want to see. That event will be held via Zoom online streaming; tickets are $30 and available here.
Other new productions and events in the works include a New Play Spotlight boasting local authors and professional actors in conversation, and a planned (if needed) streaming presentation of the new play “Small Mouth Sounds,” written by acclaimed playwright Bess Wohl and directed by Left Edge Theatre Artistic Director Argo Thompson, that was originally scheduled to run onstage in June. For more information on this and other planned streaming events, visit Left Edge Theatre’s website here.