Theatre B was started by wife/husband teams, so we were excited to welcome Lori and Hardy Koenig to our production of John Logan’s Red. They have each worked on past Theatre B projects, but this is their first together at B. Lori, who is directing, previously directed Fat Pig and appeared in The Underpants. Hardy, performing the role of Mark Rothko, was seen in The Seafarer, Standing on Ceremony and in Bright Bird. We sat down and asked them a few questions about working on this project together.
What attracted you to working at Theatre B?
Lori: The ability to work on small contemporary dramatic literature is unlike any other organization in the area.
Hardy: In any community there should be, needs to be, has to be an outlet for theatre that strives to speak to things that affect our community, our lives, and our world. Theatre B tries to do that and consistently succeeds.
Lori: And it is so rewarding to engage in artistic work with other equally committed people.
Hardy: Everything that Theatre B has in place, the process, the people working on any given project, including designers, crew, the way the board and ensemble plan and execute a season, are all professionally done with the great intention.
What attracted you to ‘Red’?
Hardy: As I get older, fewer and fewer roles mean much to me. At one point, many years ago in my life, I wanted to be in plays because it was fun and was what I did. Now I look for roles that draw me to doing them. Red has that. It gives me a role I’m craving to perform.
Lori: Red, for me, was particularly attractive because of its focus on relationship and on ideas. This script is two people struggling with ideas, artistic growth, and philosophy. It asks us to see the artist as a cultural change agent.
What’s your favorite part of the artistic process?
Lori: When we are in rehearsal and we are working on things and solving problems and thinking creatively about how best to communicate our intentions and the playwright’s intentions to the audience.
Hardy: Discovery, growth, finding new meaning with the piece every day.
Lori: I love it when we work a scene and then talk about it, and then work it some more. That is exciting, when the pieces start to fall into place.
Hardy: As we continue to work on this play, I’ve not had a rehearsal where I did not discover something that I did not realize before, and it usually blows me away. Because of the depth of ideas, we will not be done when it opens. Every night something new and exciting can emerge. There will still be gold to mine. That is what is so exciting about the process.
Red runs from Sept. 19 – Oct. 12. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30, with one Sunday matinee on Oct. 6 at 2 p.m.