This month, Metro Theater Company will turn the Grandel Theatre into an ice rink set in Amsterdam. Their production will bring to life the classic tale of “Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates” starting Dec. 6.
On Tuesday‘s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh talked to the production’s playwright Laura Eason and Metro Theater Company’s artistic director Julia Flood. St. Louis will be the second city to see this play.
The story is about Hans and Gretel Brinker striving to provide for their struggling family and prove their own worth by entering a local speed skating contest, where the first prize is a pair silver skates. Flood said she chose this play for the company’s first production at the Grandel Theatre.
“When I read this play … I thought this could be something where the audience comes in thinking ‘Oh, I’m coming to see something,’ and then gets their socks knocked off by something unusual,” Flood said.
The stage will be set with windmills, a painted frozen canal and felt-bottomed ice skates to reflect the tale about Dutch youth participating in a skating competition.
Eason adapted the 1865 novel by Mary Mapes Dodge to fit modern day audiences. The production will feature local actors.
“It is essential that we are inclusive of all the artists that are in that community and that we are taking into account who our audience is,” Eason said.
Eason emphasized the importance of theater for younger and older audiences.
“One of the beautiful things that theater can do is bring living, human people into a room together to watch something and share something together,” she said.
Eason was the screenwriter for four seasons on “House of Cards.” She also addressed the former lead actor Kevin Spacey’s sexual misconduct allegations.
“[Spacey’s misconduct exposed] is clearly part of a larger moment that we’re seeing across all industries,” Eason said. “I am hopeful that this moment is happening and that it is exposing predators and their enablers and hopefully appropriately punishing them.”
She said she wants to see a larger cultural shift that allows for systematic changes to allow people to report misconducts without fear of retribution.
Listen below for the full discussion:
St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary Edwards, Alex Heuer and Lara Hamdan give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region.