The Memo: Single Carrot Theatre

Jack Sossman, Sarah Gretchen, and Rich Espy (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)
Jack Sossman, Sarah Gretchen, and Rich Espy (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)

Single Carrot Theatre produced The Memo in May 2014.

Upon reflection, it became apparent that 50 years after the first production of Václav Havel’s critique of Communist Party bureaucracy and conformity and 25 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Soviet Union and its satellites didn’t have the corner on top-heavy bureaucracies. Anyone who’s gone to the Maryland DMV knows that.

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Sophie Hinderberger and Rich Espy (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)

So, rather than simply making this a send-up of Czechoslovakia or Communism, I set the play in the contemporary United States in a government office in Washington, DC. In a moment of corporate personhood, government gridlock, surveillance techniques and torture were in the forefront of our national consciousness, the choice had more than a little resonance.

Paul Diem (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)
Paul Diem (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)

“With The Memo, Single Carrot manages to balance its tendency toward avant garde, progressive theater with excellent acting and staging, resulting in one of the best local productions this year.” – Evan Serpick, City Paper

Britt Olsen-Ecker and Paul Diem (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)
Britt Olsen-Ecker and Paul Diem (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)

“Originally written and produced in the mid 1960s to satirize the labyrinthine bureaucratic procedures of Soviet-era communism, the play’s central conceit—a nonspecific government agency decrees that all internal communications must be conducted in a made-up language that’s nearly impossible to understand—effortlessly becomes a way to skewer the strategic banality of corporate America under the direction of Stephen Nunns.” – Bret McCabe, Bmore Art

Sarah Gretchen, Rich Espy and Jack Sossman (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)
Sarah Gretchen, Rich Espy and Jack Sossman (photo credit: Chris Hartlove)

“The Memo” was awarded “Best Revival” for the City Paper’s Best of Baltimore 2014 and was listed  in the year’s top 10 classical music and theater events in Baltimore by The Baltimore Sun.

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