Asheville’s newest theater company, The Sublime Theater, presents its inaugural production, TRNZ: A Metamorphic Musical, from Thursday, November 1, to Saturday, November 17, at The BeBe Theatre. The Sublime Theater, led by producing artistic director Steven Samuels and associate artistic director John Crutchfield, is dedicated to “new, established and neglected works.” Artistic associates include Kristi DeVille, David Hopes, Todd Weakley, Henry Williamson III and Lisa Yoffee.
Samuels, co-founder and former artistic director of The Magnetic Theatre, oversaw the world premieres of 53 productions there and says that he and a number of established and emerging artists “lost their home” when Magnetic changed management last year. “The Sublime Theater will restore and advance these voices,” he says, “and, we hope, through publication in various media, extend their reach beyond these mountains.”
TRNZ, Samuels says, is a “delightfully weird” play written by Crutchfield. The setting is an exclusive, underground discotheque in modern-day Berlin. Crutchfield describes the play as “an ambiguous, somewhat creepy, mythopoetic phantasmagoria, with songs” about a young woman and a mysterious, older man. Music includes cabaret-style songs, German lieder and 18th-century Baroque orchestrations.
Local favorites Terry Darakjy, Lisa M. Smith, Laura Tratnik and Julian Vorus star in the production. Additional crew includes Mary Zogzas, original music and sound design; Don Baker, sets and lighting; Elizabeth Evans, choreography; and Sandra McDaniel, costumes and hair design.
“Though its themes are important and serious and the framework is realistic,” Samuels says, “the presentation is wildly theatrical and the ultimate effect is comic.”
Shows will be held at The BeBe Theatre at 20 Commerce Street in downtown Asheville. Previews will be held Thursday, November 1, and Friday, November 2. The play opens Saturday, November 3, with performances continuing Thursdays through Saturdays through November 17. All performances are at 7:30 p.m. Previews are $10 and all other performances are $15. Tickets are available at TheSublimeTheater.org and at the door, but due to limited seating, advance purchase is suggested. Show is for adult audiences only.