Primal Forces Comes Home To Boca Raton

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Nomadic Theater Company Announces 2018-19 Season at Sol Theatre

By: Jan Engoren Contributing Writer

After his stint at the Arts Garage in Delray Beach ended abruptly last December, Keith Garsson, artistic director of Primal Forces Productions is happy to have landed on his feet.

The company has signed a deal to become the resident theater company at Sol Theatre in Boca Raton, 3333 N. Federal Hwy., replacing the former Evening Star Productions.

Rosalie Grant, founder and artistic director of the Evening Star Productions at Sol Theatre, is relocating to New Mexico, according to her daughter, Sara Grant, 25, who will reprise her mother’s role as manager at Sol Theatre.

This left a vacuum Garsson was eager to fill.

After a 20 year incarnation as The Boca Raton Theater Guild, a home at Sugar Sand Park, a four-year detour through Andrews Living Arts (twice), Arts Garage and Empire Stage in Ft. Lauderdale, the theater director says he didn’t want people to think he disappeared.

“I wanted to stay on their radar,” he says. “Hopefully this will be a long-term gig.”

“We’ve come full-circle from our origins in Boca and are glad to be back in Boca Raton,” Garsson says, who brings with him long-time associate, Genie Croft, founder of the Women’s Theatre Project.

Croft is anticipating the move back to Boca as well.

“I love the creative experience of theatre,“ she says.  “It’s an exciting challenge to move to a new space and present works that are thought-provoking, not always seen and start interesting conversations.”

“Making a connection with the audience is always a thrill,” she says.

Garsson says the Grants have given them free reign and as a Boca resident himself, he believes the proximity to the theater will allow him to be more hands-on.

“They’ve been very hospitable and welcomed us with open arms,” he says. “It’s a symbiotic relationship – Primal Forces will present during season (Nov. – Apr.) replacing the Evening Star productions, and Sol Theatre children’s productions will continue over the summer.”

“We’re so excited to have Keith Garsson and Primal Forces here at Sol Theatre,” says Sara Grant, who went to see Garsson’s production of playwright Daniel McIvor’s “Communion” at Empire Stage last January.

“He has a great artistic vision and our venue is perfect for his intimate productions,” she says.  “I’m looking forward to a great collaboration – this is a win/win for both of us.”

Garsson believes his theatre fills a niche that’s not filled by other theaters in the area including the Wick Theatre in Boca Raton and Palm Beach Dramaworks in West Palm Beach.

“We’re Off-Broadway to their Broadway,” he jokes, but emphasizing that they are a professional theatre company using local actors with Broadway credits.

“Theatre should reflect the values of the community and I invite the community to show up and give us their feedback,” Garsson says.  “We’ll give you a night of thinking and top-notch entertainment without having to travel too far.”

On tap for next season are shows with subjects that include African-American history, the Holocaust, aging, and Neil Simon’s dark comedy, “The Gingerbread Lady.”

The season opens on Nov. 30, with “Breadcrumbs,” which was supposed to be the last show at the Arts Garage, a show Garsson expects will entice the South Palm Beach theater crowd.

As an added enticement the theater is offering a special price for all four shows of $100.

Tickets may be purchased primalforces.com or by calling 866-811-4111.

The complete season:

Breadcrumbs

by Jennifer Haley

Directed by Keith Garsson

Tickets: $30-$35

Nov. 30 – Dec. 23, 2018

Fri. & Sat. at 8 p.m., Sun. at 2 p.m.

Theories of identity are put under the microscope in this time-bending drama. An aging writer (Angie Radosh), who despises technology, accompanied by a mysterious stranger, (Jacqueline Laggy) travels back in time to the dark woods of the past, unearthing a tragedy that shatters their notions of language, loneliness and essential self.

Having Our Say

by Emily Mann

from the book by Sarah L. and A. Elizabeth Delany with Amy Hill Hearth

Directed by Genie Croft

Tickets: $30-$35

Jan. 11 – Feb. 3, 2019

Fri. & Sat. at 8 p.m., Sun. at 2 p.m.

The Delany sisters’ (Avery Sommers, Karen Stephens) extraordinary true story of our nation’s heritage recalls Paul Robeson, Harlem’s Golden Age and Jim Crow. As graduates of Columbia University, Bessie breaks barriers to become a dentist while Sadie integrates the New York City school system.

Blonde Poison

by Gail Louw

Directed by Keith Garsson

Tickets: $30-$35

Feb. 15 – Mar. 10, 2019

Fri. & Sat. at 8 p.m., Sun. at 2 p.m.

The true story of Stella Kubler (Lourelene Snedeker) who, in present day London, reflects on her days as a young Jewish girl in Nazi Germany. As she recounts her past, will we still see Stella as a victim? Or were her misdeeds as monstrous as those who imprisoned her?

The Gingerbread Lady

by Neil Simon

directed by Genie Croft

Tickets: $30-$35

Mar. 22 – Apr. 14, 2019 

Fri. & Sat. at 8 p.m., Sun. at 2 p.m.

One of Neil Simon’s most mature comedies. It’s 1971 in New York City and Evie (Patti Gardner) is a cabaret singer compromised by her excessive lifestyle. As she tries to rebuild her life with her insecure friends Toby (Janice Hamilton) and Jimmy, can she also establish a closer relationship with her daughter?