After successful runs of her short play program in Asia, Christy Webb is delaying her retirement with a Vancouver edition of Take 5.
“I really did have the intention to retire,” says Webb, who originally announced her retirement after the critically acclaimed Annapurna in September last year. “But people kept sending me scripts to entice me.”
Not looking to do another two hour play, Webb landed on the idea of a shorts program featuring five one-act plays. A format she had success with in the past, the Vancouver edition of Take 5 will see Webb direct three of the five shorts, handing over the reins to Raïna von Waldenburg and Jennifer Copping for the remainder.
It promises to be a really entertaining evening – short, fast and good. There is no theme, just an eclectic mix of plays that ends in a big laugh. – Christy webb
A mix of funny, sad, and timely works, Take 5 includes a short by Sharr White, one of Webb’s go-to playwrights. Webb has previously directed White’s The Other Place and the award-winning Annapurna.
“I wrote to Sharr and asked if he had anything, and he sent me Icarus,” says Webb of the piece that will feature Jennifer Pielak and Eduard Witzke.
“It is a piece that he had entered in a festival back in 2013 about two people in Cape Cod who meet on a bus. I’ve done two other plays of his in Vancouver and he gifted with me Icarus,” she continues.
Take 5 also includes Joe DiPietro’s ten minute Executive Dance. As the name suggests, two young corporate execs find themselves climbing the corporate ladder one dance step at a time. Directed by Webb and choreographed by Jess Dexter, it features performances by Richard Meen and Darren L. Hopwood.
“I’ve always loved Joe DiPietro,” says Webb of the Tony Award-winning playwright. “He is such a great writer, and this is a short, funny, laugh-out piece.”
The third piece directed by Webb is Daniel Reitz’s You Belong to Me, featuring Brendan Taylor and Maria Turner as two lovers who have not seen each other since college.
Raïna von Waldenburg returns as writer, director and performer in a shortened version of My Friend Andrea, the story of Andrea Yates who admitted to drowning her five children in the bathtub of their Houston, Texas home in 2011.
The final one-act, A Second of Pleasure, comes from controversial playwright, Neil Labute and is directed by Jennifer Copping. It features Copping, Jenn Griffin and Nathanial Middleton.
“I’ve wanted to work with Jenn Copping and Jennifer Griffin for some time now,” says Webb. “I asked Jenn Copping to find a play, and seems like it took forever to finally find the Neil Labute play.”
Webb sees the evening as much a showcase of the talent on stage, as it is about the plays themselves, and is confident it will be a formula that Vancouver audiences will embrace.
“I love the idea of bringing these different actors to the stage for each play,” says Webb. “It promises to be a really entertaining evening – short, fast and good. There is no theme, just an eclectic mix of plays that ends in a big laugh.”