by Joseph Zettelmaier
November 7 - December 29, 2019
*Special Black Tie Benefit Performance Saturday, November 16, 2019*
Thursdays & Fridays | 8:30 P.M.
Saturdays | 3 P.M. & 8:30 P.M.
Sundays | 2 P.M. & 7:30 P.M.
*Please note, due to the intimacy of the theatre, latecomers will not be seated until intermission.
A southern gothic.
”You’re a big, fat channel cat...eating up anything that touches your whiskers…no matter how big they get, someone always ends up sinking a hook in them.”
The Cully Shack BBQ Joint has been an institution of Mound Bayou for decades. As Otis Cully and his daughter Ada close up one night, the county sheriff arrives for some fried okra and reminiscing. A buried secret is about to be unearthed, a past sin that Otis and the sheriff both hoped was long behind them. What starts as a cordial sit-down turns into a violent encounter that will change three lives forever. Contains strong language. Channel Cat is written by Michigander Joseph Zettelmaier.
The World Premiere of Channel Cat will be directed by Harry Wetzel. Mr. Wetzel has directed Savage in Limbo at U. of D., The Fantasticks at Henry Ford Museum Theatre, Kokonut Kapers in Novi, and Forgiving John Lennon at Detroit Repertory. He has performed as the Elephant Man, Larry the Liquidator, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Karl Marx. Lately, he and his Feminist Kittycat, Sasha, have been listening to Mussorgsky's Pictures At An Exhibition, over and over again. Not only that, he has recently given up bread, pasta, cheese, and gluten. Also Sour Cream.
Lynch R. Travis (Otis) – Mr. Travis returns to the DRT stage after last appearing in the acclaimed 2012 production Burying the Bones, for which he won a Subscriber Award for his haunting portrayal of South African James Mxenges. He is a multi-talented stage/film/television actor, director, technician. He has appeared at most of the region’s professional theatres, most recently in Flint at Purple Rose, American Buffalo at the JET, A Painted Window at Williamston, and Fences at Performance Network. He has credits in TV and Film, and is also the Director and an Instructor of the DRT’s Actors Workshop. We are happy to have you back, Lynch, Grandfather X 2.
Kayla Von (Ada) – Ms. Von is making her professional debut on the Rep stage. She is currently a student of Theatre at Wayne State University, but she already has credits in Detroit area theatres. Most recently she appeared in The Exchange and in Mamacita at Planet Ant and at the Bonstelle she was Rose in Fences and Beneatha in A Raisin in the Sun. She is not a complete stranger to the Rep’s boards as she also acted in the Detroit Playwrights’ Lab Showcase last year. Ms. Von is alumni of the internationally acclaimed Mosaic Youth Theatre. Welcome aboard, Kayla.
Ryan Carlson (Clay) – Mr. Carlson returns to the Rep stage after a 21 year hiatus! He last appeared in the DRT 1998 production of Odd Jobs. Between then and now he has acted in many productions across Michigan: in Funnyman at Tipping Point, A Steady Rain at Planet Ant, Duck Hunter Shoots Angel at City Theatre, Superior Donuts and as the Gentleman Caller in The Glass Menagerie at Purple Rose Theatre. He began his professional theatre career at the age of 19, and earned his BFA from The University of Detroit Mercy. www.theryancarlson.com Welcome back, Ryan.
Lulu Dahl (Stage Manager) – Ms. Dahl is a Rep acting veteran managing the other side as the stage manager. Ms. Dahl’s DRT acting credits include Capital, Herb the Green Knight, A Paradise of Fools, Dead and Buried, Looking for the Pony and My Soldiers. Other credits in this region include performances with the Jewish Ensemble Theatre and 1515 Broadway. She has appeared in numerous movies and on television. We welcome Lulu back to the Rep (back)stage.
Joseph Zettelmaier is a Michigan-based playwright and four-time nominee for the Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association Award for best new play, first in 2006 for All Childish Things, then in 2007 for Language Lessons, in 2010 for It Came From Mars and in 2012 for Dead Man’s Shoes. His plays The Stillness Between Breaths and It Came From Mars were selected to appear in the National New Play Network’s Festival of New Plays. It Came From Mars was a recipient of 2009’s Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award. Dead Man’s Shoes received the same award in 2011. Joseph is an adjunct lecturer at Eastern Michigan University, where he teaches Dramatic Composition, Stage Management, Stage Combat, and Play Production. He's also theatre faculty at Schoolcraft College. He’s an Artistic Associate and Resident Playwright at First Folio Theatre, an At Large Ambassador for the National New Play Network, and can be reached at his website jzettelmaier.com.