United We Act
The Putnam Theatre Alliance, a trio of Putnam County’s leading arts organizations: Arts on the Lake, the Philipstown Depot Theatre, and Tompkins Corners Cultural Center, is in its second year of collaboration. Our mission: Work together to deliver daring theatre to the Hudson Valley and present the region as a hub for the development of top-quality productions.
Putnam Theatre Alliance: Pay Dirt
Saturday, October 14th, 5:00 pm
At the Putnam Arts Council, 521 Kennicut Hill Road, Mahopac, NY
The Putnam Theatre Alliance will present scenes from their new play Pay Dirt. The Alliance is Arts on the Lake, the Philipstown Depot Theatre, and Tompkins Corners Cultural Center, acting as a unit to present more ambitious programming than the organizations could do on their own. Their “Pay Dirt Project” is a commissioned full-length play written by Nan-Lynn Nelson, Vickie Ramirez, and Kate Moira Ryan, and directed by Alice Jankell.
Pay Dirt focuses on the struggle over land in what would become Putnam County just before the American Revolution when property changed hands and soldiers changed sides with ferocity and speed. The main characters include landowner Mary Philipse, the Philipse family’s enslaved miller Cesar, and Wappinger Chief Daniel Nimham.
The presentation at the Putnam Arts Council will include key scenes, key characters, and a plan for how the production will be realized and tour the three theaters in March 2024. It is expected to last about an hour, but the gallery will remain open, and the audience will be invited to share refreshments with the producers and the diverse cast of actors.
Those planning to attend, please reserve your place.
The Putnam Theatre Alliance Presents ~ "Pay Dirt" A reading directed by Alice Jankell
The Alliance has commissioned three award-winning playwrights to each write a piece. Vickie Ramirez writes from the perspective of Wappinger Chief Daniel Nimham, Kate Moira Ryan brings to life Dutch heiress Mary Philipse Morris, and Nan-Lynn Nelson illuminates Caesar, the enslaved miller to the Philipse family.
Kent resident Alice Jankell, who is the project’s director, says, “I can think of no better way to explore the drama and journey of this land in those years than with three brilliant playwrights, three bold protagonists, and three distinct perspectives!”
This first presentation is the beginning of a long-term project that will weave together all three one-acts into a single sweeping full-length play. A workshop presentation is planned for spring, 2023, and a full production is anticipated for the fall of 2023. At each step, audience input will be welcomed and greatly appreciated by the Alliance.
Actors who have been engaged to participate include Christine Bokhour, who will portray Mary Philipse, Dylan Carusona as Daniel Nimham, and JoAnna Rhinehart who will appear as Caesar’s wife, Carry-on.
Also participating are Aaron Gaines, Devin Gibbs, Robert G. Severls, and Danielle Soames, and Nancy Swann on stage directions.
Past Events 2021
The Alliance’s first effort launched May 13 with The Freedom Project, which pairs a series of radio plays written in 1940 with original plays written during the pandemic. Separated by decades, the pieces are linked by themes of justice, civil rights, and democracy.
Part 1 - May 13-16
We began with His Honor, the Mayor & The Secret Secrets of Wonderland County. The historic plays were written by Orson Welles, Maxwell Anderson and other members of the Free Company. The companion pieces were written specifically for this project by some of the finest playwrights working today: John Pielmeier, Christine Toy Johnson, and Craig Lucas. Click here for a press release.
Part 2 - June 3-6
This second Alliance streamed reading pairs The Miracle of the Danube by Maxwell Anderson written in 1940 with Expression of Regret written in 2021 by Christine Toy Johnson. Both plays directed by Jason Beckmann.
"Miracle of the Danube" cast: Annemette Andersen, Sean Cleary, Patrick Dunning, Claudia Godi and Joseph Somma.
"Expression of Regret" cast: Michelle Liu Coughlin, Diane Huey and Yan Xi.
More info at Arts on the Lake
Part 3 - June 24-27
This third Alliance streamed reading pairs "Above Suspicion" written by Sherwood Anderson in 1940, directed by Donald Kimmel, and More Beautiful by Craig Lucas, written in 2021, directed by Alice Jankell.
“Above Suspicion” is a drama concerning freedom from police persecution. Set shortly before World War II, a visitor from Nazi Germany has difficulty understanding an important aspect of American life.
In More Beautiful we see that families, like nations, can be torn apart in Civil Wars. To the drumbeat of competing news sources, one nuclear family goes nuclear.
*All ticket purchasers will receive a link to the performance and a link to the Q&As via email on June 24th at 6:30 pm. The performance can be viewed anytime from June 24-27. Please use the Q&A link that will be provided to join our discussion with the playwright, the actors, and the directors. Dates and times TBD.
Each pair of plays will stream online and Talkback sessions with the directors, writers, and cast will follow.