"Adding" to the Future

Our exploration of "Time and Memory: Looking Forward, Looking Back" continues on Tuesday, October 19 with "The Adding Machine" (1923), by American playwright Elmer Rice. "The Adding Machine" shows the effects of advancing technology & the corporate ethic on a bigoted, self-centered, fully American antihero. This seminal play influenced playwrights from O'Neill & Miller to Albee, Mamet, & Kushner. Its "techniques all look forward to drama of the future" (International Dictionary of Theatre).  "Very wise and very wild" (The New York Tribune), with "scenes of novelty and power" (The New York Times), "The Adding Machine" provides "the pleasure of both poetry and science, the warm beauty of life and love, the icy delight of mathematics" (The Nation).

We will meet at Delray Vietnamese Garden, 4918 Del Ray Ave., a few blocks N of the Bethesda metro. Take both up escalators, turn left onto Old Georgetown Rd., walk up to Del Ray Ave. & turn right. Old Georgetown Rd., Del Ray Ave., & Cordell Ave. have inexpensive garages & parking lots.  Dinner begins at 6:30 & our discussion at 7:30.

Our meeting will feature director Benjamin Fishman, co-producing director of Washington Jewish Theatre, where "The Adding Machine" opens October 5.  After graduating University of Maryland, Fishman served as artistic director Jim Petosa's assistant at Olney Theatre, where Fishman directed his own compilation "Oscar Wilde: From Deepest Sorrow . . . ." More recently, Fishman directed "What's Wrong With This Picture?" at Washington Jewish Theatre & "Soft Click of a Switch" at Source.

Make reservations for our October 19 meeting by e-mailing [email protected] or calling Elizabeth Dixon (202-223-1763). Tote up "The Adding Machine" (separately or in the collection "Three Plays") at Backstage Books, 2101 P St., NW, & for a Footlights discount at Politics & Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave., NW. Barnes & Noble, 3040 M St., NW, & Olsson's Books & Records, 1307 19th St., NW, may also have copies.

"Adding" Up in Rockville

On Sunday, October 24, at 2 p.m., Footlights will attend Washington Jewish Theatre's production of "The Adding Machine" at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington, 6125 Montrose Rd., Rockville (between the Twinbrook & White Flint metros). Tickets are $18. We must receive payment by October 19, also the refund deadline. Mail your check, payable to Footlights, to Robin Larkin, 5403 Nibud Ct., Rockville, MD 20852 (240-669-6300 & [email protected]). Robin will hand out tickets at the theater just before the performance. Afterwards we'll have dinner at Seven Seas, 1776 E. Jefferson St., Rockville, just behind the JCC.

"Doors" Through Time

On Wednesday, November 17 Footlights continues discussing "Time and Memory" with "Communicating Doors" (1994), by our era's "most prolific playwright" (Time Magazine), British dramatist Alan Ayckbourn. "Doors"   follows a 21st-century prostitute from her time to ours & back. "It's 'Back to the Future' meets Noel Coward" (Wall Street Journal) with "echoes of Hitchcock" (London Spectator). It's also "finally quite moving" (Entertainment Weekly). Our meeting will feature director Nick Olcott, whose production of "Doors" we'll attend at Round House Theatre, 12210 Bushey Dr., Silver Spring, 3 p.m. November 21. Tickets are $16. Mail your check, payable to Footlights, to Robin Larkin, 5403 Nibud Ct., Rockville, MD 20852.

Tips from the Footlights

Footlights is kind of a book club for plays. As with any book club, you'll get more out of our discussions if you've read the book. You can often get our plays from the library. But if finances permit, please patronize one of our cooperating bookstores. These bookstores need your business if they are going to continue stocking our plays.

Don't wait until the last minute to order performance tickets! Shows sell out, often before our deadline. If you want to attend a play with us, mail your check today.

Footlights on Stage

On Monday, October 18, at 6:30 p.m., Woolly Mammoth Theatre's free reading series "ForePlay" will present Otho Eskin's "The Red Queen," the first of 3 plays to be read that evening at Woolly Mammoth, 1401 Church St., NW.  Reservations are required. Call 202-393-3939 x.525.  Please Note: date has changed since original posting.

In February 1996, Footlights discussed Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman" (1949). Last March we discussed Brian Friel's "Translations"  (1980). You can see "Salesman" October 5-November 7 at Olney Theatre, 2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Rd. (MD-108) (301-924-3400). And you can see "Translations" through October 10 at Rep Stage, Howard Community College, 10901 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia, MD (410-772-4900).


Tuesday, October 19, 6:30 p.m.: "The Adding Machine," Delray Viet Garden
Sunday, October 24, 2 p.m.: "The Adding Machine," Jewish Community Center
Wednesday, November 17, 6:30 p.m.: "Communicating Doors," Delray V. Garden
Sunday, November 21, 3 p.m.: "Communicating Doors," Round House Theatre
Thursday, December 16, 6:30 p.m.: "On the Verge," Luna Books
Monday, January 24, 6:30 p.m.: "Stop Kiss," Luna Books