Gorey Stories

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A musical entertainment adapted by Stephen Currens

Music by David Aldritch

Based on the work of Edward Gorey

Featuring a special encore mini-concert tribute to The Tiger Lillies

Directed by David M. Jenkins

Oct. 24 – Nov. 18, 2012

Thu. – Sat. 8pm, Sun. 4pm

Tickets: $28

Shimberg Playhouse, Straz Center for the Performing Arts

Media Cast & Crew Patron Reviews Season

Winner!

  • Theatre Tampa Bay – Outstanding Costume Designer – Katrina Stevenson
  • 2008 Creative Loafing Best of the Bay – Best Costume Designer – Katrina Stevenson
  • Jobsite Jobby – Best Supporting Actress (tie) – Summer Bohnenkamp-Jenkins
  • Jobsite Jobby – Best Overall Design – Brian Smallheer (Scenic/Lights) & Katrina Stevenson (Costume)

This show is dedicated to the memory of Rachel Lisi who loved both Jobsite and Edward Gorey.

Katrina Stevenson and Jason Evans in Jobsite's Gorey Stories. (Photo by Pritchard Photography.)Not so much of a return as a reboot, Jobsite revisits their wildly popular 2007 production that enjoyed a sold-out four-week run.

Gorey Stories is a compilation of stories, poems and limericks – a neo-gothic vision of the world as dark, mysterious, and yet simultaneously hilarious. In the mix are unusual creatures, curious landscapes, insanity, religious fanaticism, murder, catchy tunes and a deep appreciation for all of the arts.

“A unique, odd, perverse and engaging entertainment. It is not an evening you are going to easily forget.” – N.Y. Post.

One of the many changes to Jobsite’s 2012 staging of the show is the addition of an encore mini-concert of songs from the album by The Tiger Lillies with Kronos Quartet, The Gorey End. Gorey shared a box of unpublished stories with The Tiger Lillies before his death that they turned into a concept album, and Jobsite will be staging songs such as “Gin,” “The Weeping Chandelier,” and “The Hipdeep Family.”

Other changes to the show from Jobsite’s 2007 production include new takes on the costumes, set, props and make-up along with the introduction of video projection and puppetry, new arrangements of the music with different instruments, and a cast of six now performing a show, which was originally done with a cast of nine.

“We had such a blast with this show the first time through, and even as successful as the show was, we all had ideas on how we could really take it to the next level if we had another crack at it,” offers director David M. Jenkins.

(Clock. from top) Michael C. McGreevy, Jason Evans, Katrina Stevenson, Summer Bohnenkamp-Jenkins, Amy Gray and Spencer Meyers in Jobsite's Gorey Stories. (Photo by Pritchard Photography.)“Those who saw the show before will find plenty of new things to enjoy while falling in love with a favorite all over again, and those who missed out the first time are really going to be in for a treat. We’re really excited about the puppets and marionettes. I just saw the plans for a full-sized Osbick Bird marionette which has me feeling like a schoolboy. Also, we’re going to be able to do some really fun stuff with video and with making the cast and band much more interactive with one another this time. It’s a rare thing to get a second chance at a show like this. We can’t wait.”

Jobsite’s past Halloween blockbusters have included sold-out runs of Dracula, The Night of the Living Dead, The Pillowman and Mindgame.

Age recommendation

14+ Contains some adult subject matter and situations.

Jobsite believes the show to be suitable for most, though always recommends patrons do their research. The dark but playful material has the occassional bit of entendre and is certainly darkly sardonic, but the amusing results are suitable for those who already love Lemony Snicket or the worlds of Tim Burton.

About Edward Gorey

The late Edward Gorey (d. 2000) illustrated and wrote short stories, poems, prose and plays based in an eerie and macabre world full of odd characters (often children) that experience strange fates and mysterious demises. Among his best-known works are dark delights like The Gashleycrumb Tinies, The Hapless Child and the titillating tale The Curious Sofa. His illustrations resemble Victorian-era woodcut drawings with a bit of Goya, Aubrey Beardsley and Charles Addams thrown in for good measure. His illustrations were animated for the introduction to the PBS show Mystery!, and he provided production design for popular Broadway productions such as Dracula (for which he won a Tony for Best Costumes). He also illustrated T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, the basis for the musical CATS.

Most are not aware that Gorey was ever responsible for a musical, and that’s due to the fact that it closed the same night it opened – Oct. 31, 1978. Around the turn of the century, the play found a second life in black-box theaters who have concentrated on the unique storytelling and the brilliant characters in a more intimate environment.

“a deliciously macabre homage…. Jobsite perfectly realizes Gorey’s special brand of irony in 3D” – Tampa Tribune

“plenty of amusement to be had…. The entire cast of Jobsite regulars [are] a hoot to watch, individually and together.” – Tampa Bay Times

“playfully wicked… even better than expected….Gorey Stories should be on your to-watch list.” –Creative Loafing

“By the end of the play, fans will find themselves caught up in the debauchery of Gorey’s stories, gleefully singing along and wishing there were more than 26 letters in the alphabet.” – The Oracle

Video

Gallery

Summer Bohnenkamp-Jenkins in Jobsite's Gorey StoriesThe Ensemble of Jobsite's Gorey StoriesThe Ensemble of Jobsite's Gorey Stories

Media

Previews

USF professor brings “Gorey Stories” to stage – USF Oracle

2007 Previews

The Gorey Makings of a Hit – St. Petersburg Times

Gorey Galore – Creative Loafing

It’s the Perfect Time of Year for a Gory Tale or Two – Bradenton Herald

3 Theaters Delight In Deathly Doings – Tampa Tribune

2007 Reviews

“True to the illustrator-author’s tongue-in-cheek humor, the vignettes depart from the innocent play of bygone gentility and turn toward the dark side. Nursery rhyme monsters, orphaned children and murderous adults collide in an energetic improvisation of the undead … Through spoken word, song and dance, the cast portrays willful carnage and debauchery with lively humor. They seem to revel in the chance to perform as unsupervised, naughty children in a Lord of the Flies underworld.” – Tampa Tribune

“By the end of the play, fans will find themselves caught up in the debauchery of Gorey’s stories, gleefully singing along and wishing there were more than 26 letters in the alphabet.” – The Oracle

“The production at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center is amply amusing, full of Gorey’s dry wit and benignly disturbing characterizations. But by far the most striking elements are visual … The effect is ghastly, humorous and strangely beautiful. It’s a collision of Dr. Seuss, Charles Addams and Edvard Munch. Combine that look with Gorey’s morbid but jaunty stories, verse and songs, and you end up with a memorable theater experience.” – St. Peterburg Times

“It would be unfair to compare a local production to the Broadway version of the same play unless – as is the case here – the homegrown show holds its own. Part of the credit goes to the exceptional potency of the play, but major props are due to the Jobsite cast and crew.” – Tampa Tribune

Cast & Crew

  • David M. Jenkins – Director

Cast

  • Summer Bohnenkamp-Jenkins – Mona
  • Jason Evans – Earbrass
  • Amy E. Gray – Ortensia
  • Michael C. McGreevy – Harold
  • Spencer Meyers – Hamish
  • Katrina Stevenson – Lady Cilia
  • Robert Jarosh – Music Director

Musicians

  • Jeff Temple – Percussion
  • Alan Thomas – Bass
  • Parker J. Wilkson – Piano
  • Matthew Ray – Stage Manager

Crew

  • Amanda Bearss – Puppet Designer
  • Christen Petitt Hailey – Props Designer
  • Katrina Stevenson – Costume Designer
  • Greg Newcomb – Poster Artist
  • Brian M. Smallheer – Scenic & Lighting Designer

2007 Cast & Crew

  • David M. Jenkins – Director

Cast

  • Summer Bohnenkamp-Jenkins – Mona
  • Jason Evans – Earbrass
  • Steve Garland – Jasper
  • Jaime Giangrande-Holcom – Ortensia
  • Michael C. McGreevy – Harold
  • Spencer Meyers – Hamish
  • Roz Potenza – Mary
  • Katrina Stevenson – Lady Celia
  • David Valdez – Henry
  • Angela Lakin – Music Director

Musicians

  • Christina Chen – Cello
  • Angela Lakin – Piano
  • Zi Ning – Flute/Clarinet
  • Jennifer Longmuir – Stage Manager

Crew

  • Brian M. Smallheer – Scene/Light Design
  • Katrina Stevenson – Costume Design

Patron Reviews

Via Facebook

Check out Jobsite Theater latest production Gorey Stories, it’s amazing… – Mike Carrao

Gorey Stories was absolutely hysterical & the cast BROUGHT IT. You’ve got 4 wks to see this show. Do it. (They’re already selling out. Hurry) – Lisa Hoover

Gorey Stories was amazing at the preview last night! If you live in Tampa, you must see it! All performers are spook-tacular! – Aubrey Huber

Just saw the show last night. It was excellent!! :D – Jason G. Layman

My wife and I had the pleasure of attending the opening night of Gorey Stories last night. Truly a fantastic work, a magnificent collaboration of artists bringing Edward Gorey’s work to life. I laughed, I was given pause and was fascinated. Bravo to all!! – Owen Robertson

It was so much more than I expected! I really love Gorey but you guys really brought out the disturbing and dark! I laughed alot and was very affected in other parts. All the actors were fantastic, but my favorite has to be the woman that played the little girl. I’m telling all my friends to go. Awesome time!!!!! – Poppy Nogood

Great performance on Saturday!!!! Loved the costumes and musical numbers. Wonderful cast and crew! Thanks Jobsite! – Chris Ryan Rocha

We loved the show!!! Bizarre in a good way!!! Telling all my friends to go see it! – Melissa Anderson

Hey everyone go see Gorey Stories at Jobsite Theater while you have the chance. It’s creepily delightful. – Miriam Rochford

Attended the opening Friday night…what can I say but FABULOUS!! I can’t decide what was my favorite part, it’s a toss up between Spencer Meyers depicting his lions, or the entire crew during “The Curious Sofa”! Bravo to your talented crew!

Amazing show tonight – the whole cast was a stand out!!!!! – Linda Brandt

Gorey Stories was such a unique and creative performance. Go see it! – Eric Holsinger

Congratulations to the cast of Jobsite Theater’s Gorey Stories!! I thoroughly enjoyed myself today. Highly stylized, beautiful, fun and weird. See it if you haven’t. – Jon Gennari

Had a really great time at Gorey Stories last night. What a wonderful and talented cast!! Another Jobsite gem! – Bob Westphal

I just want to say congratulations to you wonderful wonderful actors. My wife tonight attended a Sunday afternoon matinee performance of Gorey Stories and we were absolutely entranced by the whole experience. From the makeup and the costumes and all of your performances with each story that was told, we laughed we gasped and we didn’t want it to end. Bravo and kudos to you all. – Bobby Torres

2007 Patron Reviews

I want to tell you how much I enjoyed the show last night. I thought it was phenomenal! … The whole production was so detailed – costumes, make-up, set, lighting, music, everything – even the Oompa Loompa song at intermission…. It was one of the best Jobsite productions that I’ve seen – and I’ve seen quite a few – and I sincerely hope that you have to extend your extension of the show! – Carol Cohen

Thank you so much for last night and please extend my most sincere gratitude to the exceptional cast of Gorey Stories. I have been talking to many people about it and I found myself trying to fight giving too much voice to category or style because I love the fact that, along with other beautiful things about this production, it points away from classifications in its embracing its own layers and contrasts… Tight from beginning to end, extremely clever while trusting the audience’s intellect, the musical numbers were BANANAS! I wanted action figures of each cast member… I have to find the time to see it again. – ranney

I just saw Jobsite’s Gorey Stories and it was seriously the best stage performance they have ever done. YOU MUST SEE THIS SHOW! I was absolutely blown away by this show. F’ing hilarious and simultaneously exquisite in every way! – ediblelysol, LiveJournal

LOVED it! My bf and I were obnoxiously quoting lines at each other on the drive back to Orlando. – mitejen, LiveJournal

Great storytelling, pretty, pretty pictures, many equal measures of hilarity and pathos. Great, great show! Thank you!! – Leah LoSchiavo

I am a huge Gorey fan and I never thought I would have the opportunity to see this production. You folks did such a magnificent job interpreting his work. It was the perfect Halloween treat for me and my friends. Thank you so much for bringing a little dream of mine to fruition! Everything about our experience last night was just perfect. You can be sure I will be attending more shows produced by Jobsite Theater! – Rachel Lisi

We attended Gorey Stories last night and are still talking about it and probably will continue to do so for many months. We attended with our two teenagers who are huge fans of Gorey and they were truly enthralled. The cast, costumes, set, and musicians were perfect. Thank you so very much for a memorable evening at the theater. – Patricia Hendler

We attended last weekend, and I have to tell you, Gorey Stories was outa sight. Actors, set, music, costumes, everything was great! I’m so glad we got to see it. – Jennifer Swanson

Via Twitter

great show tonight! – @fsu2626

my fave – @melowsh

If you’re a fan of some dark comedy, go see @jobsitetheater’s Gorey Stories at the Straz Center. Awesome show. Sooo funny. – @DaveMagliano

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