‘Good People’ entertains

By Laura Moore
Special to The PREVIEW

Photo courtesy Doug Chapin Deborah Persoff, Abby Apple Boes and Nancy Thomas star in Thingamajig’s ‘Good People,’ running through Sept. 1 at the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts.

Photo courtesy Doug Chapin
Deborah Persoff, Abby Apple Boes and Nancy Thomas star in Thingamajig’s ‘Good People,’ running through Sept. 1 at the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts.

Thingamajig Theatre Company continues its box office breaking 2013 Summer Season tonight with the Colorado Premiere of “Good People.”

Entering its second weekend, David Lindsay-Abaire’s 2011 Tony Award-nominated play is co-produced by Denver-based company Abster Productions and directed by award winning theatre producer John Ashton.

The play features an all-star cast with Abby Apple Boes (Margie), Kevin Hart (Mike), Kristen Adele (Kate), Deborah Persoff (Dottie), Nancy Thomas (Jean) and returning Thingamajig performer Craig Dolezel (Stevie).

In “Good People,” Margie’s existence hangs by a thread. She is fired from her low-wage job at the Dollar Store because the inconsistent care for her mentally disabled adult daughter causes her to be chronically late. Her landlord, who is also a “friend,” is threatening to kick her out of her apartment now that she’s unemployed. And the one person who might be able to help her out, an old boyfriend from Southie who is now a successful doctor, doesn’t want her to attend his birthday party for fear of embarrassment.

The only hope she has left seems to be a good round of BINGO and maybe some good people, if Margie can find them.

“I love this play,” remarks Tim Moore, Thingamajig Theatre Company’s artistic director. “Some of the key themes of the play are ‘cycles of poverty,’ addressing ‘what could have been’ and ‘judging a book by its cover.’ It also asks if personal success is a product of hard work and achievement or a product of luck.”

“Good People” takes a hard look at those issues, and more, in a deeply thought-provoking and oftentimes humorous way that only well-written stories can.

Moore adds that he hopes Pagosa Springs high school students can attend the play and has offered complementary admission for students who participate in their developed “Good People” study guide.

“So many of today’s hotbed political topics are brought up in the play. It’s one of the key reasons I selected the play for our summer season and at the time we chose to produce it with Denver based Abster productions, towards the beginning of the school year,” says Moore. “I’d love to have the kids attend and provide feedback to their teachers, start a discussion and really think about the central themes of the play.”

Moore also notes that, after big summer blockbusters like “Spamalot” and “The Full Monty,” contemplative pieces don’t often produce big ticket, sold-out numbers, but are equally important in content programming.

“We experienced unprecedented attendance with our two summer musicals. We ran at over 98 percent capacity all summer long. Thingamajig was among the top attended theatres in the state of Colorado this summer, despite a very rough June with fire coverage in media and Wolf Creek Pass closing for an inordinate period of time. When I scheduled ‘Good People,’ another Colorado Premiere, I knew its name recognition would be limited, except amongst theatre enthusiasts and diehard supporters of the arts. It was a financial risk, but time and time again patrons in Pagosa have personally thanked me for offering theatre pieces with something to think about. In the past, we’ve offered titles like ‘A Steady Rain,’ ‘Doubt,’ ‘Brilliant Traces,’ ‘Hidden’ and ‘The Turn of the Screw,’ all which had lower attendance than some of our fun comedies shows like, ‘Sylvia’, ‘Office Space’ and ‘Guys on Ice,’ but it’s important to me to offer audiences a balanced plate each season of professional theatre that appeals to our patron base on many levels. There’s always the moment when the final ticket sales are calculated on these shows that I experience a fleeting thought or two of doubt, but then a wonderful card comes in the mail with a heartfelt expression of thanks for our risk-taking, or a stream of donations follow from patrons who understand that these shows require support beyond ticket sales. We have a sophisticated community and I’m very thankful for that.”

Don’t miss “Good People,” running through Sept. 1.

What could follow up a fantastic summer theatre season? The anticipation of the next season!

On Aug. 28, Thingamajig Theatre Company will host an exclusive 2013-2014 Season announcement party for season ticket holders. At the party, Thingamajig will reveal the highly anticipated shows coming up October 2013 through May 2014. At the party, invitees will get the first chance to purchase season tickets and purchase reserved seating options.

“We’ve scheduled another Colorado Premiere, a great holiday favorite, a hilarious Tony Award winning comedy and of course the compelling dramas our regular patron base has come to expect and love. I’m very excited for this coming season. Pagosa has already become a destination for professional theatre in southwest Colorado and we’re continuing to deliver titles this coming season that build on that hard-earned reputation,” says Moore.

Not a season ticket holder? Not to worry. Readers of The SUN will get the general public’s first look at the upcoming season in the Aug. 29 PREVIEW.

“The SUN continues to be an amazing supporter of the arts in Pagosa and we’re grateful for their support of our efforts in the community,” says Moore.

Thingamajig Theatre Company and Abster Productions present “Good People” at the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts tonight at 7 p.m. Shows continue through Sept. 1, Thursday–Friday at 7 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.

For tickets and information, visit www.pagosacenter.org or call 731-SHOW.

This story was posted on August 22, 2013.