Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Premieres Coming

Three one act plays by Steve Taylor-- "Lost Lenore," "The Cask of Amontillado," and "Hop-Frog"---will be presented Friday, January 16th, and Saturday, January 17th, as a dessert theatre fundraiser for Frankfort's LIFE House, an animal rescue organization.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Next New Plays Reading

The next meeting of 517 Playwrights will be held on Sunday January 25, 2009 from 2:00 to 5:00 pm at the Beaumont branch of the Lexington Public Library. Bring a play you've written and join the fun!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Time Off

School's out so I'm taking time off. Call me at 859 940-9510 if you need to reach me. Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Pictures of Tim

I've requested pictures of scenes from Tim. As soon I receive them I'll get those pictures posted. In the meantime go see a play that likely will become a seasonal staple of many community theatres: Tim: A Christmas Story.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Tim Tastic: A Review

Tim: A Christmas Story by area playwright D.B. Williams had its WORLD Premier tonight on the stage of Georgetown College's John L Hill Memorial Chapel. The play, a modern retelling of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol that is set in Cleveland, Ohio with 'ghosts' that include an Hispanic waitress, an Indian who is not Hindi but Southern Baptist, and a former girlfriend of this version's 'Scrooge' (Eddie Greel) was ably performed by members of the Georgetown Community Theatre and well staged and directed by Gil Thurman.

Brett W. Ervin as Eddie Greel was believeable as the work and money obsessed uncle who changes, in part due to the influence of his idealistic young nephew, Tim (Conner Caldwell). Though only in the fourth grade Caldwell holds his own in his first, but surely not last principle role. Also, doing well in bringing their characters to life were Kim Burgess (Angelita) and Jim Miller (Mr. Calbert).

Gil Thurman has staged Tim: A Christmas Story in a way that effectively helps tell the story. The set and lighting were elegantly simple; likewise the blocking was generally open with clear lines that facilitated being able to see and hear the actors.

The only problem with the play had nothing to do with the dialogue or the acting it was the frequent scene/costume changes that seemed to always appear as soon members of the audience started to laugh at some of Williams' crackling dialogue or an actor's funny bit. Runnning time was right at 90 minutes, with shorter blackouts it might well have come in at less than 80 minutes and that would have greatly helped a show that was run without an intermission.

There is still time to get out and see the last two performances of the world premiere of Tim. Georgetown Community Theatre will present Tim: A Christmas Story Saturday December13th at 8:00 pm and Sunday the 14th at 3:00 pm. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Go see Tim!

Get a ticket to see Tim: A Christmas Story which has it's world premier this weekend in Georgetown, KY.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

See a World Premiere, here in Kentucky

The world premier of playwright D.B. William's Tim: A Christmas Story will be staged by the Georgetown Community Players, Georgetown, KY December 12, 13, and 14, 2008.

Curtain times are 8:00 pm on Friday and Saturday, and 3:00 pm for the performance on Sunday December 14th. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and under.

Directed by Gil Thurman, Tim: A Christmas Story is a 90 minute retelling of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol.

Premier performances will be held at the John Hill Memorial Chapel on the Georgetown College campus. The Chapel is easy to find on the main road that runs through the campus, Jackson Street.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Heartland Plays, Inc.

I have requested that a representative of Heartland Plays come speak to us in March or April 2009 to discuss how to format a play for submission. If you have a particular time or date you'd like this person to visit with us, please let me know. Thanks.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Pictures from our first play reading

Greta Fields (left rear) author of Wild Card
Steve Taylor (near right) author of The Summer it Rained Every Day

Bruce Williams, author of Tim: A Christmas Story

Plays Read

The plays read at the recent play reading included:

Excerpts from Tim: A Christmas Story by D.B. Williams and Wild Card by Greta Fields. Both of these plays are full-length works so only one or a few selected scenes were read.

Plays read in their entireties were: The Summer It Rained Every Day by Steve Taylor, a ten minute play and two more ten minnute plays, both by Bill McCann, Jr. The Devil's Christmas Party and There Was No Wrigley Field: A Tragedy for Two, A Comedy for the Rest of Us.

If you have an interest in learning more about any of the plays listed above please leave a comment and the playwright can get back to you.

Coming Soon!

Pictures from the recent play reading will be posted in the next few days. Check back so you can put playwright names and faces together!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Last Sunday in January?

So far the last Sunday in January 2009 is the leading candidate to be the next time 517 Playwrights will meet to conduct a reading of new plays. Any other suggestions? Leave a comment and let us know when you'd like to have another new plays reading. Thanks.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


The world premier of playwright D.B. William's Tim: A Christmas Story will be staged by the Georgetown Community Players, Georgetown, KY December 12, 13, and 14, 2008. Curtain times are 8:00 pm on Friday and Saturday, and 3:00 pm for the performance on Sunday December 14th. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and under.

Directed by Gil Thurman, Tim: A Christmas Story is a 90 minute retelling of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol.

Premier performances will be held at the John Hill Memorial Chapel on the Georgetown College campus. The Chapel is easy to find on the main road that runs through the campus, Jackson Street.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Four Playwrights Met

We started small yesterday-- but we started. Altogether, four playwrights-- Greta Fields, Steve Taylor, Bruce Williams and myself met to read plays we'd written. Each playwright brought a play, or an excerpt from a play and the four of us spent about 3 hours reading and discussing the scripts that we had on hand.

Bruce Williams is from Georgetown and author of a play that is actually in production; Steve Taylor, from Frankfort will see three of his short plays produced in January 2009. Greta Fields, from Whitesburg and Lexington and myself (from Lexington) are the cofounders of 517 Playwrights and do not have plays in production.

While we were few in number, we were high in enthusiasim and expect to hold another play reading in January 2009.

I'm Sorry

I've had two people contact me through the twitter account that they came but couldn't find us yesterday-- which probably means that others came, but didn't complain. I appologise to you all. I am so sorry that our communications were not what they should have been. I'll keep working to improve that. In the meantime, please don't give up. Those who came yesterday were enthusiastic about the need for a playwright's group. So please stay in touch. There will be a second meeting, some time in January 2009.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Come Rain or Come Shine

As I write this it is 6:00 am, and raining hard outside. But the show must go on! The initial meeting of 517 Playwrights will be held today at 3563 Georgetown Road, beginning at 2:00 pm, regardless of the weather.

Even if you have not signed up before, you are welcome to join us. You need not bring a play to participate. You need not be a playwright. All you need to be is interested in new plays whether as an actor, audience member, director or playwright; heck, you can be a theatre critic and come. Everyone is welcome!

Come one, come all and meet Lexington area playwrights who have scripts that they want to share.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Its not too late!

Join us tomorrow at 3563 Georgetown Road, Lexington, KY for our first new play reading opportunity. Leave you name and the number of people coming with you as a "comment" and come join us! Nothing else is required. As of today, I am expecting about 14 people. But there is room for more people, maybe a dozen more. So don't be shy. Come join us.

Directions: From New Circle Road (in Lexington) take the Georgetown Road exit (US 25) head out of town (towards Georgetown) and go four miles. Look for the baloons that will mark the drive and voila, you're at the inaugeral meeting of 517 Playwrights! See ya at 2:00 pm.

One thing read our "Rules" so you can know what to expect!

If you have a play you'd like read bring it along with enough copies so that our readers don't have to crowd around a single (or only a few) scripts. Thanks.

Need more information about us? Read the other entries on this blog.

For up to the moment information you can also visit us at

Friday, November 28, 2008

Bring Plays and Copies of Plays

You do not need to be a playwright to attend the reading of new plays this Sunday afternoon; all who have an interest in new plays are invited. However, if you are a playwright and do want to hear one of your plays read, please bring enough copies to make the reading of your play easier. Ideally, we'd like you to bring one copy for every character-- 4 characters = 4 copies. On the other hand if a character has a single line, or does not speak, then fewer copies are fine. Please just keep in mind that if six readers are sharing a single script that you are less likely to get a true feel for how your script "sounds." In short, use common sense in determining how many copies of the script are necessary.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

God Bless America

While enjoying this day with family and friends, give thanks for this wonderful country where writers are free to write what they are inspired to say. Happy Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Play reading "RULES"

The purposes of the playreading this coming Sunday are: to allow time for conversation and "shop" talk; to read aloud plays that many playwrights may only have heard themselves read; and to allow playwrights to receive feedback from those who attend the reading.

We will gather at 2:00 and begin the readings at between 2:15 and 2:30 depending upon how many people are present and whether or not more are still arriving.

We will begin by reading the shortest plays first (1 minute, 10 minute, 1 act and then full-length).

We will discuss 1-10 minute length plays for 10 minutes each; 1 act plays will be discussed for 20 minutes; full-length plays for 30 minutes.

Discussions may last for less than the allotted time per play, but I will strictly enforce the upper limits of discussion or we will get bogged down and not get as many plays read and discussed as we could otherwise.

I am not trying to cut off discussion but to keep things moving; remember, you can always discuss a play with its playwright privately.

When discussing a play either make a POSITIVE comment (I liked how you did X) or ask a question (Why did John do Y?). Please do NOT make negative comments about a play.

Generally, playwrights have put a lot of thought and time into their works and negative comments will (more often then not) simply put him/her on the defensive. A person in a defensive posture is unlikely to hear your negative comment. However, a good question can cause a playwright to write down your question and consider later whether or not to change the play.

Playwrights may NOT respond to any question asked about their play (nor comment upon it once the reading of their play has begun).

Playwrights may, if necessary, respond to questions privately. Responding to questions publicly will use valuable time and prevent other participants from speaking about that particular play.

Discussion by the playwright prolongs the reading process. The purpose of the reading is for the author to receive feedback not have an opportunity to lecture those in attendance.

Commentators should keep both comments and questions SHORT.

Let's keep things moving!

Speak only once about a play unless everyone present has had an opportunity to speak and the moderator SPECIFICALLY opens the floor for a second round of questions/comments.

Playwrights need to hear as many points of view as possible, not just yours (or mine).

Have a good time.

Come back for the next new plays reading.

The next new plays reading will be in January 2009. Check the twitter site and this one for the date, time and place!

Newspaper article now online!

The Rich Copley newspaper article about 517 Playwrights that originally appeared in the Lexington (KY) Herald-Leader on November 23, 2008 is now available online at:

Please RSVP

If you can come to the play reading this weekend, please let us know. As of right now we are expecting about a dozen people. The house where we're meeting could probably hold double that, perhaps more. However, as with any "party" we need to know how many to plan for. If you don't know if you can come for sure, tell us you're coming: better too many snacks than not enough.

Just send us a comment. Give us your first name and the number of people who will be coming with you. Thanks.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Playwrights Forum

For more information about play writing visit the The Playwrights Forum at address

For more about 517 Playwrights follow us on

First New Plays Reading: November 30, 2008

The first reading of new plays to be sponsored by 517 Playwrights will be held Sunday November 30, 2008 beginning at 2:00 pm. Whether you are a playwright, actor or "just" an interested theatre fan come to our initial meeting of 517 Playwrights and help us get this new venture off to an exciting start.

If you have a script you'd like to have read please bring several copies of the play so that readers don't have to share a single copy; ideally, there should be one copy per reader (character). Of course this may not be practical (or necessary) if a script with 15 characters can be read by five readers.

The reading will be held at 3563 Georgetown Road, Lexington, KY.


From New Circle Road take the Georgetown Road exit; turn out of town and go 4 miles out Georgetown Road. Look for a three story brick house on the left; balloons will mark the drive.

Hope to see you this Sunday at 2:00 pm.

Bill McCann