By ALEXANDRA REGUEIRO
“Good evening. We’re Forever Plaid. And we’re dead.” The sweet and quirky fellas of the 1950s boy band, Forever Plaid, have been harmonizing through our halls — and they’re here to stay until the end of July!
Here are few interesting tid-bits about our show:
1.“Forever Plaid” was made into a movie in 2008
Like most musical hits, “Forever Plaid” hit the big screen in 2008. The film was directed by Stuart Ross, the writer/original director of the show, and still makes audiences swoon via DVD to this day.
2. Our Sparky steals the show
As Sparky, the all-eyes-on-me member of The Plaids, Matty cracks audiences up eight shows a week. Where would you find Sparky on a Friday night in Gainesville? Matty thinks the character would hang out at Rockeys Dueling Piano Bar, where he would be the star of the show — right up on stage, singing his heart up to heaven.
3. “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody” has an episode named “Forever Plaid”
Season 2, episode 6 to be exact. Although it doesn’t particularly involve a barbershop quartet, it does involve a whole lot of plaid! In this episode, London Tipton is forced to go to a private school where the uniforms are- you guessed it- plaid. Hilarity ensues as London comes to terms with the fact that plaid is rad. This is semi-irrelevant but moral of the story: Disney Channel is obsessed with “Forever Plaid,” too.
4. It was written and directed by Stuart Ross
We love “Frasier”. That would be a random thing to say if Stuart Ross, the writer/original director of “Forever Plaid” didn’t direct an episode of the smash-hit series (which he did). Ross’s funny bone shines in all his work, especially our fun, summer musical.
5. We have seasoned Plaids
This isn’t The Plaids’ first rodeo. Our actors have played some of your favorite characters in other theatre’s productions of “Forever Plaid” and have the singing chops to actually start their own, real boy band.
6. Our Frankie is a man of many talents
It may surprise you that James Gish, who plays Frankie in the show, didn’t study musical theatre in college. Instead, Gish studied business management at Arizona State University and says if he wasn’t an actor, he’d be a fiction writer. Maybe he could write about a fun, hip(p) theatre located in the heart of Gainesville. I don’t know though, just a suggestion.
7. Bryan Mercer is a Hipp favorite
Bryan’s presence on stage is palpable, and we’re always enchanted watching him transform into every character he’s assigned. (You might remember him as Baby Jane in “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane” last fall or as Horatio in “Hamlet” this past spring.) Bryan is kind and personable — a southern kind of friendly. He’s attentive — engaging and engaged. And we’re so, so, so happy to have him here during our run of “Forever Plaid.”
8. The show is dedicated to the “good guys”
This is so cute, y’all. Stuart Ross dedicated this entire show to the guys who carried an extra handkerchief, saved their allowance to give their parents an extra special night on the town for their anniversary and who didn’t go beyond first base, and if, by some miracle they did, didn’t tell anyone. BLESS THEIR HEARTS.
Get your tickets to “Forever Plaid” by calling (352)375-4477 or visiting http://thehipp.org/event/forever-plaid/.