August 31, 2008

Theatre Brings Restaurants Inside to Savor the Stage


By Eric Feber

The Virginian-Pilot

This will be the one time you can bring food into the Wells Theatre. In fact, the Virginia Stage Company rather insists on it, albiet somewhat reluctantly.

"It will be a food-tasting event," Jennifer A. Taylor , VSC's director of development, said about Thursday's third annual Savor the Stage. "Several downtown area restaurants will be preparing food in the lobby at various stations right in front of patrons. And this time we are allowing people to carry food into the theater, just this one time. After all, it's a food tasting."

Savor the Stage will feature specialties from eight downtown Norfolk and nearby restaurants.

"This is a way to kick off our season and to give everyone the opportunity to experience the different fine restaurants in our area, so theater patrons can plan their evenings out," Taylor explained. "Last year there was really some fantastic fare."

This year's "fantastic fare" will feature Thai chicken satay , Asian slaw and skewered mozzarella and tomatoes from The 219; pimento cheese and crackers, pulled pork barbecue, and cole slaw from Comfort; orange chili shrimp over soba slaw from Bardo; she crab soup and Rockafella artichoke dip from Freemason Abbey; assorted cookies, brownies and tarts from the Painted Lady; barbecue pork sliders from Kincaid's; tuna from Bobbywood; and chicken tenders, meatballs, crab dip and a veggie tray from Sterling's Steaks-Seafood.

It's a way to savor area specialties while the VSC unveils its dramatic specialties in its 30th annual season.

As patrons munch on area edibles, VSC Artistic Director Christopher Hanna and Associate Artistic Director Patrick Mullin will discuss the company's 2008-2009 season in front of the set of the company's upcoming production of the musical "My Fair Lady." In addition, Jessie Austrian , one of the leads, will talk about the musical based on George Bernard Shaw's "Pygmalion" and will render a song or two from the score.

The trials and travails of East End cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle and her mentor Prof. 'Enry 'Iggins, will kick off the VSC's season from Sept. 16 -Oct. 5. The VSC's version will feature a recently discovered two-piano adaptation of Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe's now iconic music and lyrics.

"My Fair Lady" will be followed by Gino DiIorio and Nancy Bleemer's contemporary screwball comedy "Central Casting" (Oct. 21 - Nov. 9), Charles Dickens' seasonal classic "A Christmas Carol" (Dec. 3 - Dec. 23), Eugene O'Neill's classic American drama of "A Moon for the Misbegotten" (Jan. 20 - Feb. 8), Chris Hanna's new play about Massive Resistance and Norfolk school desegregation, "Line In the Sand" (Feb. 24 - March 15); and "Ella" (March 31 - April 19) a musical about one of America's finest singing stylists, Ella Fitzgerald.

Eric Feber, 222-5203, [email protected]


What Virginia Stage Company's third annual Savor the Stage food- tasting and theater preview

When 5:30 p.m. Thursday

Where Wells Theatre, 110 E. Tazewell St., Downtown Norfolk

Tickets $30

More info Call Bonnie Farmer at 627-6988, ext. 315, or e-mail [email protected]

Originally published by BY ERIC FEBER.

(c) 2008 Virginian - Pilot. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.