Corey D. McDaniel, Producing Artistic Director of Theatre22, looked to numerology for a name for a producing company. The “22” symbolizes the ability to turn ambitious dreams into reality, a good goal for any group jumping into the crowded pond that is the Seattle theater scene.
Previously McDaniel directed The Wild Party at Sound Theatre Company, Fallen Angels at Theater Schmeater, and Amadeus at SecondStory Repertory.
Theatre22 opened last weekend with a new production, Lanford Wilson’s 5th of July. The company also is working on a new musical, The Hours of Life, by local playwright and composer Paul Lewis and a production of The Lisbon Traviatta by Terrance McNally for their upcoming season.
Seattle has a very rich and diverse number of companies performing on any given night. What does Theatre22 bring to that mix?
More than anything we wish to create more opportunities for artists, designers and audience members.
Do you see yourself as addressing a gap in the type of theater available here?
We hope to focus a great deal of our programing for the gay and lesbian communities by choosing many of our plays and playwrights that focus on this ever evolving community.
Why did you pick 5th of July for your first production this fall?
We wanted a show that was character driven. We wanted a show that could showcase each actor, the director, and the designers in a way that represented a more traditional style of theatre, done well.
How do you think this play is relevant to today's audiences?
I think the only things that are not contemporary in this play are the clothes, the music and the fact that the script does not contain the words "the 99%." This play is about people, relationships, and personal paths interwoven together. It's remarkable that times seem to have changed so little since this script was written.
You’re also working on a new musical featuring Edgar Allen Poe.
The initial staged reading of The Hours of Life, held in June of 2011 at the Bainbridge Museum of Art, received an extraordinarily positive response from an over-capacity audience. Our second workshop reading took place on February at the Center Theatre and featured eleven local actors, an orchestra of three, and was attended by industry peers in an effort to flush out more of the script. The Hours of Life is currently in rewrites.
What else is coming up for Theatre22?
The Lisbon Traviatta directed by Gerald B. Browning in June 2014 at the Richard Hugo House.