Arts and Entertainment

Drama Dock pokes fun at the foibles of cut-rate theater

Drama Dock’s cast of “Inspecting Carol” includes Quinn McTighe (front), Patricia Kelly, Chaim Rosemarin, Gaye Detzer and Dianna Ammon (middle, left to right), Shannon Flora, Kirstin Eastman, Jeff Woollen, Peter Kreitner, Kenese Parker, Lisa Breen and Gordon Millar (back, left to right). The show will be presented at Blue Heron Art Center both before and after Christmas.  - Janice Randall photo
Drama Dock’s cast of “Inspecting Carol” includes Quinn McTighe (front), Patricia Kelly, Chaim Rosemarin, Gaye Detzer and Dianna Ammon (middle, left to right), Shannon Flora, Kirstin Eastman, Jeff Woollen, Peter Kreitner, Kenese Parker, Lisa Breen and Gordon Millar (back, left to right). The show will be presented at Blue Heron Art Center both before and after Christmas.
— image credit: Janice Randall photo

Drama Dock is putting the final touches on a holiday treat for the Island — a boisterous comedy the show’s promoters hope will have audiences rolling in the aisles.

The show, “Inspecting Carol,” tells the behind-the-scenes story of a cash-strapped, third-rate theater company in the midst of producing its umpteenth annual presentation of “A Christmas Carol”— a production that may be the company’s last unless a true Christmas miracle occurs.

The troupe’s only salvation is a promised visit and evaluation by an inspector from the National Endowment for the Arts — but when a down-on-his-luck traveling actor is mistaken for the powerful bureaucrat, the real fun of the farce begins.

Veteran director Chris Ott is at the production’s helm, and he said he’s had a great time working with the show’s cast.

“It’s been such a joy to work with them,” he said. “The things they bring to the play every night are awe-inspiring.”

“We laughed and laughed at the first rehearsal,” he said, “and I’m still laughing.”

Ott went on to explain that audience members who have been involved in community theater will be able to identify with the play’s characters — a high-strung director, a wise-cracking stage manager, a corps of hypersensitive actors and a teenaged, strapping Tiny Tim who has outgrown his costume.

But Ott also emphasized that the show isn’t only meant for theater insiders.

“For anyone who’s ever seen ‘A Christmas Carol,’ the show is a scream and just funny,” he said.

Written by Daniel Sullivan, “Inspecting Carol,” was first performed at Seattle Repertory Theatre in 1991.

It has since gone on to be produced by regional and community theater groups throughout the country, often being described as a cross between “Waiting for Guffman,” “A Christmas Carol,” “Noises Off” and “The Government Inspector.”

“Inspecting Carol” will play at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 18, 19 and 26, 2 p.m. on Dec. 19 and 4 p.m. on Dec. 20 and 27, at the Blue Heron Art Center. Tickets, $10 to $15, are available at Vashon Bookshop, Books by the Way, Blue Heron, www.brownpapertickets.com and at the door, if available. Parents are advised that the play has some mature language and scenes.

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