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Welcome to "The Festival Within the Festival!" We at PDX Playwrights are honored to once again uphold our reputation for robust creativity with an outstanding offering of new readings and performances as part of Fertile Ground. We invite you to explore a vibrant garden of new work taking root: from the challenges of immigration to a vaudeville jukebox musical. With 20 plays of varying lengths among 13 shows and a wide assortment of topics and forms, PDX Playwrights offers something for nearly everyone. Roam from a wild examination of the cultural layers of bullfighting (the winning play from our workshop collaboration with CoHo Theatre) to provocative 10-minute pieces from our Epic Shorts: Strange Burdens contest—to mention but a few.
Sink your toes into this rich dramatic soil and you’ll get a sense of the impressive variety of voices sprouting in our work. Our delectable baker's dozen of matinees, twilight, and evening shows run Tuesday, April 16 through Sunday, April 21, 2024. We hope the thrill of encountering these new plays will produce a festival within you.
Tickets to PDX Playwrights performance events are only $15 each. All will appear at Chapel Theatre, 4107 SE Harrison St, Milwaukie.
Pack Up your Sins and Go to the Devil
by Timothy Krause
With memorable tunes from vaudeville composers such as Irving Berlin and Harold Arlen comes Pack Up Your Sins and Go to the Devil, a new jukebox musical devised by Timothy Krause (a Portland theatre- maker whose historical drama Bread and Roses won Portland Civic Theatre Guild's 2024 New Play Award). Inside the Paradise Music Hall, heavenly voices lead to hellish choices when Frank, a vaudeville producer, strikes a Faustian deal to save his theater by casting Helen, a fallen angel seeking a comeback, and three aspiring performers, Harry, Jack, and Will. However, Helen's manipulative ways and selfish desires lead the whole gang straight to Hades to confront dark truths and moral dilemmas through increasingly surreal vaudeville acts that include song and dance, magic, drag, and even the River Styx embodied by circus acrobats. Pack Up Your Sins shines its spotlight on ambition, betrayal, and the consequences of choices in a harmony of comedy, drama, and fantasy.