Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Everyone can play the fool

Express Staff Writer

Remember that song about playing the fool? You know you always wanted to but didn't have the urge. Well, on Tuesday, April 1, your chance has arrived to join Company of Fools at its annual party at the Liberty Theatre to celebrate its upcoming seasons as well as its name day.

"We try to make it family embracive and so there are lots of things going on," Core Company member R.L. Rowsey said. "It will have the same festive feel as last year, with lots of food. We'll spend a little time talking about the new season. It's a fun party, and the Fools know how to party."

The party will also feature a proclamation from Hailey Mayor Rick Davis, along with appetizers and treats from several restaurants in the Wood River Valley and a foolishly fabulous bake sale. There will also be a fortuneteller, a poet's board, face painting, a costume trunk for little ones and prizes.

The free annual party attracts all ages and types, and creates an air of anticipation for the coming season.

"This will begin a year-long celebration of the magic, mystery and wonder of foolishly live theatre in the Wood River Valley," Core Company member Denise Simone said. "This coming year will be filled with programming that will delight, amaze, challenge, inspire and touch as we continue to tell stories relevant to our community and to our times."

Founded in 1997, the nonprofit professional theater company has added to the cultural life of the Wood River Valley with full seasons and educational outreach devoted to the theatrical arts. In 2000, the company became the first theater company in Idaho's history to receive Constituent Theatre status from the Theatre Communications Group, a national organization for professional, nonprofit American theatre. Former Idaho Governor Dirk Kempthorne honored Company of Fools by awarding it the 2004 Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts.

Among the company's pursuits are a six-show, main-stage season for the second year of the Summer Fools Festival, with three shows in repertory and three other shows between September and March.

Among the company's other pursuits are an in-school program called Stages of Wonder, adult acting classes, ACT II (for adults 62 and over), creativity classes, teen theater classes and children's classes, audience incentive programs and a playwriting program called New Voices for the Theatre.

Additional productions brought in to supplement the season have included such shows as "Elephant" and "Art Guffaw" by the Manitou Theatre, "Snowflake" by Gale Lajoye, David Parker and The Second City.

To date the company has produced 86 productions in 12 years, seen by some 89,800 patrons.


What: Celebration and announcement of new season

Where: The Liberty Theatre, Hailey

When: Tuesday, April 1, from 4-6 p.m.

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