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FG-Lettering_Sprig250-1The Fertile Ground Festival—that fun and frantic, art-filled, 11 days in the cold and dark of late January, long after the leftover eats, drinks, light and joy has worn off—IS ALMOST HERE!!!! PDX Playwrights is so excited to bring 26 New Plays by 19 Local Playwrights in 8 Ticketed Events to the Festival this year. If you FB-announce your ticket purchase YOU WILL GET KISSES at the Box Office! (The online ticket system gives you this opportunity at checkout!)

In Calendar order with brief descriptions:

Noon Friday, Jan. 23
A Teaser for Weekend I
Tickets: Free Venue: Gerding Theatre Mezzanine
Whet your appetite for new work with this sampling of the new plays

AT HIPBONE STUDIO, 1847 E Burnside (North side of street. great free parking lot)
7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 24
Daisy Dukes Shorts Night — by PDX Playwrights
Directed by Dave Chapman
Tickets: $10
Good things come in small packages, especially these short shorts written on the theme Fertile Ground and chosen by PDX Playwrights from submissions. Alphabetical order by playwright: Brad Bolchunos — Cracking Rulers; Dave Chapman –Taking it All In; Gary Corbin –Papacino’s; Miriam Feder –Bird First; AJ Haslett – Grounds More Fertile; Remi Newhouse — Culinary Discourse; Nick O’Connor — Club 13; Matt Russell — Caressing the Earth; Sharon Sassone –Kama Sutra Wednesdays; and John Servilio — Scar and Buzzkill.

1 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25
In Search of the Red Skull — by Katie Bennett
Tickets: $10
When Lady Emmeline’s baby sister is snatched, the prime suspect is a band of women pirates led by the vicious beauty Red Hart. When Emmeline asks for help from the pirate known as Charmin’ Zan, a map he discovered in his youth leads them to a secret in his past and unexpected trouble. Don’t miss this piratical romantic adventure romp.

3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25
Unmediated — by Brad Bolchunos
Tickets: $10
When reporter Hal Turnin investigates a cult-like group near a small town, his life tumbles out of control. He unveils mysteries about a piece of property, investigates hints of harm to public safety, and confronts unsettling powers of a strange woman tied to it all. His search sends him down a path fraught with questions about the nature of truth and fear of the unknown. The backlash threatens far more than he ever imagined.

6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25
Alan’s Confectionery — by Alan Alexander III
Tickets: $10
“Some folks can snatch the sweetness out of the cake and never crack the crust.” Alan’s entrepreneurial spirit has navigated the family through the Great Depression and World War II. But at least one of his children is plagued with an unanswered question from the past: “What happened to Mama?” This is a musical mystery about Family.

8 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25
Greg and Lauren — by Sunbear Theatres
Bereavement — by AJ Franks
Tickets: $10
Greg and Lauren are young at heart. They fall in love at first sight at the age of seventy, much to the disapproval of their adult children. A light-hearted comedy with strong language, strong opinions and strong determination. From the author of Cate Darringer, Hail! and Zombiella.

Bereavement is a dark comedy portraying the life and limitations of a man pushed past his breaking point. Les has been a doormat for those around him. His manipulative wife, condescending Mother, arrogant Son and sadistic boss have sucked him dry of any passion he once felt for life. Though he finds little solace in staying at home, he frequently misses work to avoid his boss and eventually uses every last vacations and sick day available to him. When painful secrets are revealed, judgments aired and resentments expressed, Les begins to feel there is no escape. Then he develops a plan that just may solve all his problems.

Noon Friday, Jan. 30
A Teaser for Weekend II — by PDX Playwrights
Tickets: Free Venue: Gerding Theatre Mezzanine
New work continues to sprout in this sampling of the plays PDXP will premiere the second weekend of the festival.

AT HIPBONE STUDIO, 1847 E Burnside (North side of street. great free parking lot)

7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 30
The Conditions of Unconditional Love — by Sharon Sassone
Threshold — by Redmond Reams
Directed by Gary Corbin
Tickets: $10
The Conditions of Unconditional Love: An adolescent girl makes an unannounced visit to her grandmother’s house for no reason at all–she claims. The grandmother may be old but she ain’t stupid and the unraveling of the reason may prove to be a major turning point in the girl’s life. Award winning actress ShaSha steps out of retirement to play the Grandma as well as being the playwright.

Exploring the world outside the safety of our families is one of the most exciting and scary activities we do. Threshold explores how it is for Mark, a five year-old boy previously abused as a baby in his birth home who found safety in a loving adoptive family at age 1. Mark is terrified of the outside world. His adoptive parents are in conflict on how best to support Mark. Now that he is in school, the school does not understand Mark’s special needs. Mark takes desperate steps to try and stay safe in his mind, but it places him in danger in ways he never imagined.

BY POPULAR DEMAND!!! We’ve added a 9 pm show of Threshhold with a talkback after the show.

7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 31
Short and Sweet: Short Plays by P Town Playwrights
by Susan Faust, Miriam Feder, Heather Thiel and Rich Rubin
Tickets: $10
Susan Faust —Technocchio: When a teen refuses to communicate except by iphone, can puppet therapy turn him back into a real boy?What’s the World Coming To? One woman’s absurdly funny struggle to keep up in a world that always demands more.
Miriam Feder — Those Bastards: Maybe you can tell more about a person in a crisis than you can from a dating profile.
We’re Just Stuffed: Every young woman needs a confidant or two when it comes to love. But they don’t have to be human, do they?
Rich Rubin – Eggs Over Easy: A breakfast ritual between two old friends ranges from the ridiculous to the sublime.
Will’s Dramaturg: When a dramaturg makes a suggestion, what’s a playwright to do?
Heather Thiel — Future Past Tense: A mother and daughter compare methods –from beer to technology “for finding love.”
Cannonball Antiques: Is the past ever truly said and done? A quirky antique seller tries to make sense of her brother’s life. But will customers ever stop interrupting the seance?

We are PDX Playwrights, a year round incubator of new works in Portland.


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The Blessed Disappointment seems to be on hiatus. Maybe back after Fertile Ground–we’ll see. But thanks for checking in. Please read around the site and share.

Post 7: Write Him a Lovely Message

I rarely hear from a guy who lives within 15 miles of me AND posts a picture AND is less than 35 pounds overweight AND I could even start a cup of coffee with. I know, these items wouldn’t seem to form such an insurmountable hurdle, but they do. And then the messages from these fella’s … well maybe they have a different definition of lovely than I do. These guys give clear signs that they haven’t read any part of that profile. At worst they’re evil scammers. At their most innocuous they’re probably drunk and lonely.

Post 6: Are you an Asshole?

Most of these [Google] results were asshole tests—no we’re not talking hemorrhoid diagnostics. I guess people need to find out if they are assholes. I mean that seems natural; I know plenty of assholes and I don’t think they know they qualify.

Post 5: Your Profile

He’s fervently clutching every damn bag he ever ran across, while espousing a devil-may-care approach to life. He calls himself sensitive and talks about intimacy but he’s ever so well defended against it.

Post 4: Which website?

My fun is in highlighting annoying, weird, crazy stuff that really happens. (Actually, I’m more focused on routine misses and reveals.) Since I’m almost at the end of my patience for this week, let me just get this off my chest: