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DIVERSIONARY THEATRE ANNOUNCES THE CAST & CREATIVE TEAM OF THE SANTALAND DIARIES

Contact: Jenny Case, Managing Director
619-220-6830 x 103
Press@Diversionary.org

October 11th, 2019: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
San Diego, CA

WHAT: Diversionary announces the cast of THE SANTALAND DIARIES and the add-on performance reading of LINDA LIBBY’S HOLIGAY STORYTIME.

WHO: Anthony Methvin will direct this Legacy Production of THE SANTALAND DIARIES by David Sedaris as well as the add-on performance reading of Sedaris’ hilarious and dark Linda Libby’s HoliGay Storytime taking place after Santaland, downstairs in Diversionary’s Fritz Lounge.

WHEN: Performances run November 21st – December 22nd. Performances run Thursdays at 7pm, Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, and Sundays at 2pm. Opening Night* is Saturday, November 30th.

*Please note that there will not be a performance of Linda Libby’s Holigay Storytime on November 21st or  Opening Night, November 30th. Press tickets for a different performance are available by contacting jenny@diversionary.orgLinda Libby’s Holigay Storytime is a book-in-hand reading and not for review.

TICKETSThe Santaland Diaries tickets are on sale ($15 – $50). Discounts are available to Groups, Students, Educators, Seniors and Military.  Linda Libby’s Holigay Storytime is free and seating is limited. Reservations should be booked in advance. To be notified of ticket sales, please sign up for the Diversionary Theatre Email List: http://diversionary.org/mailinglist/

Legacy Production of 
The Santaland Diaries

by David Sedaris
Directed by Anthony Methvin

 

November 21st through December 22nd, 2019

From the brilliantly twisted mind of David Sedaris comes a classic tonic for the holidaze. Out of work and options, The Santaland Diaries finds David as he begins his career as an elf in Macy’s Santaland during the holiday crunch. Battling throngs of rabid families clamoring towards a drunken Santa to get their Christmas fix, David makes do with some hilarious observations on human nature, and an unexpected connection to the holiday spirit.

About producing this at Diversionary, Executive Artistic Director, Matt M. Morrow says, “I’m thrilled to finally (finally!) produce David Sedaris, a gay literary icon, at Diversionary. This Christmas classic will ring true, and I’m over the moon that director Anthony Methvin and actor Wil Bethmann* are reuniting after the fireworks they created on Significant Other last season.”

Director, Anthony Methvin, says about working on the Legacy Production of the show, “David Sedaris’ The Santaland Diaries really gets at the marrow of what makes Christmas so ridiculous and magical at the same time. My tinsel is a-tingle at the opportunity to rediscover a queer holiday classic like this, and its darker companion piece, Linda Libby’s HoliGay Storytime, with dynamic performers like Wil Bethmann and Linda Libby donning their gay apparel and an artistic dream team of collaborators behind the scenes to immerse you in a world of strange holiday magic.” 

Add On just for the Holidaze:  Linda Libby’s HoliGay Storytime -Join the indomitable theatre icon Linda Libby after hours for some queer holiday cheer! Grab a drink in Fritz’ lounge and saddle up with Linda fireside as she regales us with readings of holiday stories and songs that put the holly in your holigay!

Please note that Season’s Greetings has been replaced with Linda Libby’s HoliGay Storytime.

*Linda Libby’s HoliGay Storytime will not be performed on Thursday, November 21st or Opening Night, November 30. There will be a presentation on after the 7pm Industry Night performance Monday, December 9. Run time is approximately 40 minutes.

More information can be found at:  https://www.diversionary.org/santalanddiaries

For interviews and photos, please contact Jenny Case, Managing Director, at 619-220-6830 x 103 or by emailing Press@diversionary.org

         ABOUT THE CAST

THE SANTALAND DIARIES

Wil Bethmann (CRUMPET) is happy to return to the Diversionary. He was last seen here in Significant Other. He has appeared in several theatrical and commercial roles in New York City and across the country. Most recently as Louis Ironson in Cygnet Theatre’s Angels In America: Millennium Approaches & Perestroika. On screen as the personality and creative mind behind ad campaigns for SmirnoffAT&TBrosBeingBasicApplebee’s, the NCAA, and coverage for the Governor’s Ball and LoveLoud music festivals. Wil’s on-site creative consulting and productions have been recognized with multiple nominations at the Annual Shorty Awards, social media awards show in New York City. Wil studied at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, graduating with a BFA and now resides in New York City.

Linda Libby’s HoliGay Storytime

Linda Libby*After playing electric bass for Hedwig’s band, Linda is delighted to return to Diversionary! Recent San Diego credits include: Handbagged  (Moxie), Put Your House In Order (La Jolla Playhouse), A Doll’s House Part 2 (San Diego Repand Guys & Dolls (Old Globe). Linda is a Resident Artist at Cygnet Theatre: Gypsy, The Importance of Being Earnest, Company, My Fair Lady, Man of La Mancha and Man From Nebraska.  She is an Associate Artist at Lambs Players: Persuasion, South Pacific, Pump Boys & Dinettes and original cast of Boomers.  As a founding member of Ion Theater: Gypsy, Grey Gardens, Request Program, Body Awareness, and composer for Sea Of Souls. Regional: Clarence Brown, Barter, Stage West (Ontario, Canada) Arizona Theater Company. Tours: Edinburgh Fringe, Far East Russia w/ Beth Henley. Linda is the proud founder of the Bayfront Charter High School theater program. lindalibby.wix.com/lindalibby.

ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM

David Sedaris (Playwright) is the author of Barrel Fever and Holidays on Ice, as well as collections of personal essays, Naked, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and DenimWhen You Are Engulfed in Flames, and his most recent book, Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, each of which became an immediate bestseller. The audio version of Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls is a 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards Nominee for Best Spoken Word Album. He is the author of the NYT-bestselling collection of fables entitled Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary (with illustrations by Ian Falconer). He was also the editor of Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules: An Anthology of Outstanding Stories. Sedaris’ pieces appear regularly in The New Yorker and have twice been included in “The Best American Essays.” There are over ten million copies of his books in print and they have been translated into 25 languages.

He and his sister, Amy Sedaris, have collaborated under the name “The Talent Family” and have written half-a-dozen plays which have been produced at La Mama, Lincoln Center, and The Drama Department in New York City. These plays include Stump the HostStitchesOne Woman Shoe, which received an Obie Award, Incident at Cobbler’s Knob, and The Book of Liz, which was published in book form by Dramatists Play Service. David Sedaris’ original radio pieces can often be heard on the public radio show This American Life. David Sedaris has been nominated for three Grammy Awards for Best Spoken Word and Best Comedy Album.

Anthony Methvin (Director) is Producing Associate at Diversionary Theatre, where he directed Significant Other, the workshop of Who’s That, Gurl? And readings of The Harvest and Wolves. At Backyard Renaissance Theatre Company, where he is Producing Director, he directed Bachelorette, co-directed Abundance and the World Premiere of Tarrytown with Fran Gercke, and, for their Unleashed series, directed a reading of Assistance, and directed and co-adapted readings of Showgirls, Mommie Dearest, Troll 2, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, and Queen of Outer Space. Assistant Director: Buyer & Cellar and Sense & Sensibility (Old Globe), Dogfight (Cygnet), Baby with the Bathwater (Diversionary), and Spring Awakening (Palomar College). Local performances: Bedevere/Ni Knight/Mrs. Galahad/Concorde in Spamalot (Cygnet), Doug in Gutenberg! The Musical! and Lord John in The Elephant Man (Backyard Renaissance), Roger in A New Brain, Reed in Boys and Girls, and Kent in Harmony, Kansas (Diversionary). Playwright: Bleed Like Me. Education: BFA in Acting from Florida State University. Upcoming: Director of Steel Magnolias for Backyard Renaissance. You can follow him on Instagram @anthonymethvin.

Justin Humphres (Scenic Designer) is a scenic and video designer based in San Diego, CA. His design work has been seen internationally in both the United States and Asia. As a video designer, he has created content for numerous concert tours, corporate events and Las Vegas shows. As an assistant/associate he has worked on various commercial, regional and Broadway projects. Recent San Diego scenic design credits include: Significant Other, Hedwig and the Angry Inch and This Beautiful City (Diversionary), Actually (San Diego Rep), Vietgone (San Diego Rep), and Voyeurs de Venus (Moxie). Broadway credits include: SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical (Associate Designer), Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations. (Associate Designer). Justin holds a BFA from Western Michigan University and an MFA from University of California, San Diego. www.justinhumphres.com

TJ Fucella (Sound Designer) is honored to be returning to Diversionary as a sound designer. His recent credits include Bull in a China ShopLizard Boy, and The Boy Who Danced On Air (Diversionary) Cinderella Eats Rice & Beans, and Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story (New Village Arts), as well as Gypsy, On The 20th Century, Shockheaded Peter, and Spamalot (Cygnet Theatre Company), Father Comes Home From The War, and Perfect Arrangement (Intrepid), Miracle On 34th Street (San Diego Musical Theatre). He’d like to thank all of his friends at Diversionary, as well as his fiancée, Julia, for inspiring and supporting him.

Curtis Mueller (Lighting Designer) returns to Diversionary having designed GirlfriendHedwig and The Angry Inch, The Hour of Great Mercy, Bull in a China Shop, The Happiest Place on Earth, Cardboard Piano, Homos, Well, 2.5 Minute Ride, Lizard BoyManhandledNow or LaterA Civil War Christmas, Amazons and Their MenMan Clan, and A New Brain. Select local credits include: Withering Heights, Margin of Error (Roustabouts Theatre Company); End of The RainbowQuality of LifeThe 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, I Hate Hamlet, All My Sons, Macbeth (Intrepid Theatre Company); Big RiverThe 1940s Radio HourSeascape (New Village Arts); Chess in concert, Next to Normal, Spring Awakening (Cabaret at the Merc Summer Series). Curtis has also worked extensively with Coronado School of The Arts. Curtis holds a BFA in Lighting Design from California Institute of The Arts.

Elisa Benzoni (Costume Designer) is thrilled to be working again with Diversionary Theatre. Select credits include: Significant Other, The Loneliest Girl in the World, The Happiest Place on Earth, Homos or Everyone in America, Ballast, Mystery of Love and Sex (Diversionary Theatre), Sex with Strangers (Geffen Playhouse), The Who and The What, Our TownTall Girls; Brahaman/ISam Bendrix at the Bon Soir (La Jolla Playhouse); Constellations (Old Globe); Cloud 9, Romeo and JulietTwo Gentlemen of Verona, Pericles, Prince of TyreReckless, Much Ado About Nothing and Measure for Measure (USD/Old Globe); The Father, How the Other Half Loves, Of Mice and Men, Travels with my Aunt, The Illusion, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, The Cocktail Hour, Fox on the Fairway (Nominated for a Craig Noel Award), Chapatti, Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Great Nome Gold Rush (North Coast Repertory Theatre); Men on Boats, Secret Garden, Awake and Sing, Sylvia (New Village Arts); Elisa holds a costume design MFA from UCSD. www.elisabenzoni.com

Beth Hall (Stage Manager) is a newly San Diego-based Production and Stage Manager. She graduated from Fresno State with a B.A. in Theatre Arts, where she focused on stage management and technical theatre. Before moving to San Diego, she worked in the San Francisco Bay Area for five years, and collaborated with such companies as the San Francisco Playhouse, A.C.T., the Curran, foolsFURY, StageWrite, and many others. Her recent production credits include Without Walls (La Jolla Playhouse), Dionysus Was Such a Nice Man (foolsFURY), The Jungle (Curran), Word (StageWrite), and The Mechanics of Love (A.C.T).

SPECIAL EVENTS
Performances run Thursdays at 7pm, Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, and Sundays at 2pm. More information can be obtained by calling our box office at 619-220-0097.Low Cost Previews………….Thursday, November 21st – Friday, November 29thFirst Fridays…………………………………..Friday, November 22nd at 8pm
To say thank you to those that serve, Diversionary offers complimentary tickets. Email jenny@diversionary.org for more information.GSA/Youth Nights………………….Friday, November 22nd & November 29th at 8pm
Calling all High Schoolers! Join us on either Friday night during Previews for our GSA/Youth nights and get tickets for only $5.00! Call the Box Office for more details!Opening Night……………………………Saturday, November 30th, at 8pm
Pre and post show festivities – celebrate with the cast and company!

Designer Spotlight………………………..Thursday, December 5th at 6pm
Join us in Fritz’s Lounge before the show to meet the Design Team, see a display of the concepts used in producing the show and hear the influences and process involved. Hosted hors d’oeuvres round out a fun pre-show experience! The party starts at 6pm before the 7pm performance.

Industry Night………………………………..Monday, December 9th, at 7pm
Theatre Professionals enjoy a special discount to our only Monday evening performance!
Pay-What-You-Can at the door, or $10 in advance.

Director Happy Hour ………………………………………………Thursday, December 12th at 6pm
Join Director Executive Artistic Director, Matt M. Morrow and Director Anthony Methvin in Fritz’s Lounge for hosted hors d’oeuvres and a chance to chat before the show! Pre Show reception at 6pm, performance at 7pm.

Next Act!……………………………………Thursday, December 19th at 6pm
Join Director Executive Artistic Director, Matt M. Morrow and Director Bea Basso for a discussion about the next show, A KIND OF WEATHER in Fritz’s Lounge for hosted hors d’oeuvres and a chance to chat before the show! Pre-Show reception at 6pm, performance at 7pm.
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