Spotlight On: Richard Kent Green 

Christopher Borg 

Richard Kent Green was nominated for a 2012 IT Award for his outstanding lighting design for Greg Oliver Bodine’s solo piece, Poe Times Two, (Mr. Bodine was also nominated for Outstanding Solo Performance and the production for Outstanding Revival of a Play).

But like many artists working Off-Off-Broadway, his talents are not limited to one discipline, and he will be acting in his next project: the world premiere production of Tom Kelly’s Bleached Blonde Betty at WorkShop Theatre. 

The world premiere of BLEACHED BLONDE BETTY by Tom Kelly is being produced by Cat On My Head Productions at the Workshop Theatre. It follows the story of Betty, a grad student in a creative writing program and a hard working waitress, who falls for her stripper roommate’s boyfriend and the two of them are caught up in a museum heist and encounter an ex-gigolo, a serial killer, a recovering junkie and a mob enforcer with a taste for performance art.

CAB: So you’ve worn a few different hats in the theatre?

RKG: I have worn pretty much every hat there is to wear in theatre. If I made a T-shirt with all my skills on it (actor/director/producer/songwriter/musician/set design/lighting design...), they would wind all the way around a couple of times. The world must be full of theatre artists like me. I've certainly worked with scads of them in NYC, and indie theater is the only level wherein we can flex all our artistic muscles.

I’d like to think of myself as a Renaissance Man of the theater, but in all honesty, I'm really just a guy who can't say “no.”

CAB: Tell us about lighting Poe Times Two.

RKG: Greg Bodine asked me to light Poe Times Two because I was so familiar with the space at The Jewel Box Theatre. The great fun of working on it was that his director, DeLisa M. White, encouraged me to go "as dark as possible" for the darkest scenes - which was pretty darn dark, as the Jewel Box is so intimate (30 seats).  We took the production down to Cape May Theatre for a very successful run in November of 2012 to recreate the New York production. As fate would have it, we were scheduled to load in the very day (and location) of hurricane Sandy's landfall. We ended up loading in, mounting and teching all in one day (exactly ten out of twelve!) and opening a day or two late.

CAB: Wow!  Indie artists are the most stalwart!  And what about your current endeavor, Bleached Blonde Betty: multiple hats in life, multiple roles on stage?

RKG: As an actor, multiple role tracks have been my thing all along. I love the chance to use a panoply of techniques (make-up/disguise, vocal characterization, accents, etc.), and there's a particular thrill when, during curtain call, an audience suddenly realizes a tiny cast had created the host of characters they'd just seen. Playing five characters in Bleached Blonde Betty is a joy, not least because the entire cast, headed by Karen Stanion in the title role, is terrific, as are Tom Kelly and Dan Patrick Brash in their debuts as playwright and director.

CAB: What’s the show like?

RKG: It’s this twisted, madcap caper. It's, like, a dangerous romantic comedy in cartoon noir... a la Quentin Tarantino. When it's not darkly nasty, it's funny, and sometimes it's both. The whole cast is terrific; it moves like a freight train.

In addition to Richard Kent Green and Karen Stanion BLEACHED BLONDE BETTY features Joe Diomede, Kristen Lazzarini, John Lenartz, Stacy Ann Strang, Ryan Lee, Gregory Kostal with lighting design by Lauren Parrish, costume design by Lucy Goldberg, sound by DeLisa White. Stage Managed by Laura Hirschberg. It is open now and plays through March 24. For tickets and more information please click here


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