• 66°

PPT to present ‘The Odd Couple’ with a twist

By Reid Leaonard, Piedmont Players Theater Director

Opens June 6 and plays June 6, 7, 8 and 12, 13, 14 and 15 at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee at 2:30 p.m. on June 9. For tickets visit Piedmontplayers.com or call 704-633-5471.

In the early 1980s, playwright Neil Simon received many requests to cast his hit show The Odd Couple with women. The play had been a hit on Broadway and had been turned into a movie and then a TV show. As he put it in his autobiography, when he sat down and reread the original script, he realized the casting would only be women playing men’s roles and male characters.

So he rewrote the entire script.

The Female Odd Couple opened on Broadway in 1985 starring Rita Moreno and Sally Struthers as Olive Madison and Florence Unger. The premise of the story remained the same (a neat freak moves in with a slob because both their marriages have crashed and burned) and the structure of the story remained, but the characters were approached from a female point of view. The group of friends who played poker in the original script now came over for a weekly game of Trivial Pursuit. Instead of going on dates with the British Pigeon sisters who lived upstairs, Olive and Florence now went on a date with the Spanish Costanzuela brothers.

According to Simon’s autobiography, there are now as many productions of the female version around he world as there are the male.

Fourteen years ago, Piedmont Players Theater did the male version of the Odd Couple with Bob Paolino as the slob Oscar and Gary Thornburg as the neat freak Felix.
In the current production, Andy Rassler (Andrea) is Olive Madison who invites her recently separated friend Florence Unger, played by Marnie Stoker.

In one very interesting change, Shawn Van Wallendael, who played one of the poker playing buddies in the earlier male version, is now Manolo Costanzuela who comes down from Apt 14F to go on a date with the girls. Shawn’s wife, Lori Van Wallendael, was one of the Pigeon sisters, who now plays the female version of the role Shawn played in the male version.
And the other Costanzuela brother? Gary Thornburg — who was Felix Madison in the earlier version.

Others in the cast are Tamara Sheffield as the policewoman, Mickey; Holly Grant as Vera; and Robin Rogers as Sylvie.

About Post Lifestyles

Visit us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SalPostLifestyle/ and Twitter @postlifestlyes for more content

email author More by Post

Comments

Business

County begins accepting restaurant grant applications

Crime

Blotter: Salisbury man charged with nine more felony sex offenses

Nation/World

Biden team readies wider economic package after virus relief

Nation/World

Spacewalking astronauts prep station for new solar wings

Nation/World

Cuomo sorry for remarks aide ‘misinterpreted’ as harassment

Nation/World

Trump calls for GOP unity, repeats lies about election loss

Education

Rowan County administers 700 vaccines, with majority going to local educators

Crime

Shoplifting at Walmart presents challenge for Salisbury police

Local

Commissioners will hear details about changes to solar energy policies

Business

After overcoming obstacles, local barber Daniel King earns registered status

Lifestyle

39th annual K12 student exhibitions go virtual

Business

Biz Roundup: Chamber of Commerce to host ‘Salute to Agri-Business’ at March Power in Partnership

Local

Local legislators back bills ranging from new restrictions on sex offenders to Holocaust education

News

After surviving COVID-19 scare, Lois Willard set to celebrate 100th birthday

High School

Carson rolls over South 41-0 as about 600 allowed in to see season opener for both

Education

East Spencer after-school program looks toward opening, nonprofit status

Lifestyle

Frank Ramsey inducted into the NC Military Veterans Hall of Fame

College

Livingstone’s Stoutamire inducted into 2021 CIAA Hall of Fame

Nation/World

J&J’s 1-dose shot cleared, giving US 3rd COVID-19 vaccine

Coronavirus

13 deaths reported in Rowan, county stresses need to receive second dose

Coronavirus

10% of Rowan residents receive first dose; eight COVID-19 deaths reported this week

News

North Carolina State Highway Patrol commander to retire

Education

UNC School of the Arts may go for online learning due to COVID-19 spread

Coronavirus

Greensboro site to administer 3,000 daily vaccine doses starting March 10