The Country Playhouse will present The Boys in the Band by Mart Crowley, in the Cerwinske Stage for three weekends only, January 11 – 26. Performances are on Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m., with a Sunday matinee on January 20 at 2:00 p.m., plus a weeknight show on Thursday, January 24, at 7:30 p.m.
In an upscale Manhattan apartment, nine men gather for a birthday party and indulge in an evening of brittle banter and social one-upsmanship. The presence of two strangers – a good-looking "birthday present" hustler, plus an unexpected drop-in from the host's past – fuels an escalating, competitive game of Truth, culminating in confession, exposure, and breakdown. A landmark work in the canon of gay theatre, The Boys in the Band offers a view of the subculture at a time when it was highly repressed and could only unfold in private.
Directed by Stuart Purdy, the cast includes Travis Springfield, Adam Richardson, Jay Menchaca, Bob Galley, Tad Howington, L. RoBert Westeen, Louis Crespo, and Jake Bevill.
Opening Off-Broadway in 1968, The Boys in the Band ran for over 1,000 performances, overlapping the Stonewall riots that marked the dawn of gay liberation in America. A film version was made in 1970, directed by William Friedkin and starring the ensemble cast of the original New York run, notably Cliff Gorman as Emory and Leonard Frey as Harold. The play met with a bit of a backlash in later years for its self-disparaging depiction of the gay milieu, but has now come to be viewed as a breakthrough in pre-AIDS social drama, whose mordant humor serves to mask its anguish. Crowley wrote a sequel to it, The Men from the Boys, in 2002.
Ticket prices are $22 for adults, and $19 for students and seniors. Groups of 20 or more receive a $5.00 discount off the adult price. Call the box office at 713-467-4497 for reservations, or make them online at www.countryplayhouse.org (at no additional charge).
Country Playhouse is located at 12802 Queensbury, Houston 77024 (across from City Centre), just two blocks east of the Sam Houston Tollway.
Pictured: Adam Richardson. Tad Howington, Bob Galley, Travis Springfield, L. RoBert Westeen, Jay Menchaca, Jake Bevill, Louis Crespo. Photo Credit: David Yannone, White Moth Productions.