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 TEXARKANA WALTZ

PRODUCTION HISTORY

  • Circle X Theater Company, L.A C.A, 1998 (Waiver)

  • Empty Space Theater Company, Seattle, 2000 (Equity)

  • Blue Light Theater Company, NY, 2000 (Reading)

  • Basic Grammar Productions, Kirk Theater, NY, 2002 (Off-Off Broadway)

  • University of Oklahoma, Norman OK, 2005

  • + 5 community and university theater productions

AWARDS

  • Ovation Award Nominations: Director, Set Design, Best Play, and Writing

  • Garland Award: Matthew O'Donnell (Lighting)

  • LA Weekly Pick of the Week; Nominated  for Production of the Year.

MUSIC

  • The audio package includes tracks for preshow, all transitions, songs, sound FX, curtain, and post-show; .QLab4 file, cue presests .xlsx, and chord charts.

  • Available at no cost to all non-equity producers.

New York Times

"It's kind of a neat trick that Mr. Broome manages to close all the circuits of this plot. And the script is a wonder of ambition. A character is as likely to render a lofty thought in iambic pentameter as indulge in rollicking Western jargon. Sometimes a speech will do both at once: "Been thinkin', Eddie cut my mother's throat," says Houston, who in his dreams seeks to avenge his mother's murder. 'World went about its business, paid no mind;/Killin Eddie'll be more o' the same, I reckon./Nature won't move to mourn his petty death."

                                                                                                                   Bruce Webber

Seattle P-I

"His story resembles heavy-duty tragedies: "Hamlet," "Oedipus" and the Oresteia trilogy by Aeschylus, to name a few. Meanwhile, his style is equal parts Hollywood westerns, Sam Shepard poetic poverty drama, Monty Python burlesque and William Shakespeare blank verse. Yep. The rootin' tootin' cowboy scenes are written in pure Elizabethan dramatic poetry complete with rhymed scene endings and, for comic relief, ornate wordplay. As to wordplay, Cowboy Bob, for example, likens the colors on his bruised buttock to a Western sunset. Before the subject is dropped by him and his two campfire amigos, all the possibilities of buttocks, moon, sun, and bruise have been pretty much exhausted."

                                                                                                                   Joe Adcock

Los Angeles Times, Texarkana Waltz by Louis Broome

Los Angeles Times

"Singing cowboys, inflatable cactuses and echoes of "Hamlet"--the unlikely counterpoint of Wild West parody and Elizabethan revenge tragedy--propels Circle X Theatre Company's premiere of "Texarkana Waltz" to dazzling lunacy at the Los Angeles Playhouse. One of those rare works that manages to tickle the funny bone while plucking the heartstrings, Louis Broome's well-crafted, semi-autobiographical play employs modern and classical sensibilities to examine the troubled Wicketts, an Oklahoma clan coping with its violent past."

                                                                                                               Philip Brandes

TheaterMania, Texarkana Waltz by Louis Broome

"Texarkana Waltz isn't exactly a drama, and it's not exactly a comedy, either. Its perfect balance of humor and tragedy is summed up in scenes in which the ghost of a woman named Emma (Tina Benko) pleads for her son Houston (Adrian LaTourelle) to avenge her death. Sure, she's angry with her husband for brutally murdering her in front of their two children... but a big part of her bitterness is due to the fact that her new, white blouse has been soiled with blood. Weaving comedy into an ultimately poignant story, Texarkana Waltz beautifully conveys a message about healing and forgiveness."

                                                                                 TheaterMania New York, Meredith Lee

Seattle Weekly, Texarkana Waltz by Louis Broome

"Broome's deft writing walks a careful line between cowboy camp and real-world tragedy… this is a script and a production that draws considerable power from an unlikely source and, like the waltz which gives the show its title, is a lyrical dance that celebrates life and love with a sad, nostalgic air."

                                                           Seattle Weekly, John Longenbaugh

Backstage West, Texarkana Waltz by Louis Broome

"I can't recall a better, more fully realized world premiere production. Under Allison Narver's crisp direction, the play's humor and pathos play out as beautifully as a Western swing record, with the Houston fantasy sequences reaching a comic high in a second-act fireside reverie and Eddie's bittersweet Death Row musings, though tending toward the purple, taking on a strange dignity. By the end, an unconventional new family rides into the sunset, away from the graves where they've decided to leave the family mystery unsolved..."

                                                                                 Backstage West, Rob Kendt

Texarkana Waltz by Louis Broome

"Louis Broome's exhilarating script meets its match in director Allison Narver's highly imaginative yet starkly efficient staging… A uniformly superb ensemble makes Broome's quick turns between arid life and surreal flight look easy."

                                                                                  LA Weekly, Tom Provenzano

"Who would believe so wild a yarn as mine is spun from truth?" says a grieving, vengeful Houston (Paul Morgan Stetler) in Louis Broome's Texarkana Waltz. It's a tribute to both the playwright and the fine production… that you not only believe Broome's tall tale, you respond to its zingy, vital, plaintive truths. Everything has worked to turn Broome's broad, wistful saga into something warm and rewarding. With high comic and tragic style, the show croons a whiskey-soaked tale of the stories that both conceal us from and reveal us to each other and ourselves."

                                                                                 The Stranger, Steve Wiecking

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"The amazing thing about the Empty Space's new production, Texarkana Waltz, is that the play… introduces us to characters we care about in spite of their cynicism, mental breakdowns and murderous impulses. That the source of the play's material was so close to Broome's life is a reason it would be more difficult for him to write well about it, not less, and makes his achievement even more impressive."

                                                         The Daily, Louis Porter

"In its premiere production, Louis Broome's "Texarkana Waltz," the latest offering from the critically lauded Circle X Theatre Company, is--much to its credit--impossible to categorize. At times you will not be sure whether to laugh or cry, wallow in despair or howl in hilarity. But what you won't be is bored. The cumulative result is an invigorating and highly inventive piece of mind-stretching theatre…"

                                                         Frontiers Magazine, (Los Angeles)

"Louis Broome's play, "Texarkana Waltz," belongs on a best list. But the best what? It is both new and traditional, holy and irreverent, slick and funky, kindergarten basic and Shakespeare complex. Its soliloquies with rhyming couplets echo Elizabethan revenge tragedies. Its characters come out of old Western movies and modern TV soaps."

                                                          Eastside Journal, Mary Martin

"Tragic, doomed, intermittently gloomy, Broome's play is nevertheless irresistibly funny, irrepressibly loony in several of its manifestations, brilliantly conceived, and simply but daringly staged by Allison Narver."

                                                       Park La Brea News, Madeleine Shaner

"Louis Broome has created a work so unique it defies labeling. It is one of a kind. Even Polonius could not categorize it. The play touches on contemporary issues without specificity. This is no small achievement.  As audience we think of same-sex relationships, our own spirituality, the right to live and the right to die, capital punishment, law and order, and our own existential moment on earth. All of this is accomplished without judgment.

Texarkana Waltz is a triumph as entertainment. The audience is asked to recognize the lighter side of the characters, and then to submit suddenly, and without the slightest hint of the tragedy to come, to visceral shock and surprise. These moments are exceedingly rare in drama, requiring enormous leaps of faith in the unfolding play and performance. In Texarkana Waltz this is so well executed, we consent to its frankness and integrity."

                                                                                 Thomas Long, Ph.D.

"Eddie Wickett killed his pretty young wife, Emma, while their two children looked on. Today, the son lies speechless in an Oklahoma mental hospital, deep in dreams of the imaginary Wild West. The daughter lives in a distant city, hiding her past from the woman she loves. The story of a family torn apart could be material for a psychological drama, an Elizabethan revenge tragedy, or even a Country-Western song - which are just a few of the forms Louis Broome weaves together effortlessly in his exuberant, lyrical, touching, astonishingly original script for "Texarkana Waltz."

                                                                                 Jet City Maven, (Seattle)

The Texarkana Waltz music package is available at no cost to non-equity producers and includes:

  • Chord charts

  • .QLab4 file

  • .xlsx Cue Presets

  • Preshow playlist, intermission, & post-show

  • Tracks for all transitions

  • Scene scores

  • Vocal reference tracks

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