Mistakes Were Made
by Craig Wright, directed by Michael Mendelson
Michael Mendelson to replace Todd Van Voris
Show delayed only one week
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 12, 2013. Artists Rep announces Michael Mendelson will step in to play the lead role of Felix Artifex, as Todd Van Voris must leave the production due to a family emergency. Artistic Director Dámaso Rodriguez will now direct Mendelson and guide the show to opening as the production’s Associate Director. Originally slated to begin preview performances next Tuesday, September 17, the run dates for Mistakes Were Made will now be pushed back one week. Preview performances will begin September 24 and the play will open on September 28.
“This is the beauty and the consternation of live theatre,” said Dámaso Rodriguez. “It is also a remarkable aspect of Artists Rep, to have two of our highly qualified Resident Artists working on a show together and be able to immediately find a perfect solution to a show-stopping crisis is one of the many benefits of having a Resident Company.”
Artists Rep is proud to present the explosive Mistakes Were Made by the prolific stage and television writer Craig Wright, as the second show of their 2013/14 season. Despite the recent change in casting, and Rodriguez added as Associate Director in these final stages of the production process, this show marks Michael Mendelson’s Artists Rep directorial debut. Mendelson is a longtime Resident Artist and a newly designated Artistic Associate with the theatre.
In Mistakes Were Made, the lead character, Felix, on stage for the entire one-act show, is a NYC theatre producer who is about to blow a gasket. He’s jabbing at the hold button as he negotiates with a playwright, a movie star, a deep-pockets funder and an agent, all while mediating a Middle East crisis (involving sheep and militant rebels). This non-stop, fast-talking chameleon is bound for no good. With his overweight pet fish, Denise, as his only confidant and the weight of the world on his shoulders, the stage is set for a high-speed comedic train wreck of a tale.
At the production’s first rehearsal, Artistic Director Dámaso Rodriguez said Craig Wright is one of our country’s most gifted playwrights and he is excited to have Mistakes Were Made in his first season as Artistic Director. As a prolific writer for TV and stage, Wright is best known in Hollywood for contributing to the scripts of shows such as Lost and Six Feet Under, for which he won an Emmy, as well as last season’s Broadway run of his acclaimed play Grace, which starred Paul Rudd, Ed Asner, and Michael Shannon.
“On the surface, Mistakes Were Made appears to be a showbiz comedy with lots of laughs, and it is, but like all of Craig Wright’s work, the play reveals layer after layer of depth and complexity … it takes you as deep as you want to look,” said Rodriguez.
Mistakes Were Made
Written by: Craig Wright
Directed by: Michael Mendelson
Featuring: Michael Mendelson, Lucy Paschall, Liz Ghiz
Performance Dates: Sept. 24 – Oct. 27
Preview performances September 24-26
Opening Night is Saturday, September 28
Show runs Wednesday through Sunday at 7:30pm, Sunday at 2pm
Venue: Artists Repertory Theatre – Morrison Stage (15th and Morrison St.)
Box Office: 503.241.1278 or www.artistsrep.org
Craig Wright, Playwright
Craig Wright’s plays include Lady, Grace, The Pavilion, Melissa Arctic, Orange Flower Water, Recent Tragic Events and The Unseen. He has received several awards for his writing, including the Helen Hayes/Charles MacArthur Award for Best New Play (for Melissa Arctic) and has been the recipient of fellowships from the McKnight Foundation, the Jerome Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. For his work on Six Feet Under, he received an Emmy nomination and a Writer’s Guild of America award for his work on Lost. He created Dirty Sexy Money for ABC and is currently an Executive Producer of the upcoming Tyrant on FX.
Michael Mendelson, Director & Felix Artifex
Michael Mendelson is classically trained and is well known in the Portland theatre community as an actor, director and teacher. He is an Artistic Associate and Resident Artist at Artists Repertory Theatre and a member of Actors’ Equity Association. He has served on the Board of Directors of PATA and is on the faculty of the Portland Actors Conservatory. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Wayne State University and a Master of Fine Arts from The University of Washington Professional Actor’s Training Program under Jack Clay. While in New York City, he studied with Tanya Berezin, a founding member and an Artistic Director of Circle Repertory Theatre. Mendelson has directed As You Like It, Lear’s Follies and The Taming of the Shrew for Portland Shakespeare Project, Love’s Labour’s Lost at Northwest Classical Theatre Company, Stones In His Pockets at Public House Theatre, As Is at Key Productions, The Meaning of Prayer at Verbatim Productions and staged readings of Botticelli at Profile Theatre and Dinner With Friends at Mt. Hood Repertory
Theatre. His acting credits at Artists Rep include Alfred Lunt in Ten Chimneys, Andrei Borchevsky in Red Herring, Sherlock in Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol and Alan Raleigh in God of Carnage. Prior credits at Artists Rep includeThe Cherry Orchard, Superior Donuts, Othello, Design for Living, Holidazed, Becky’s New Car, Three Sisters, Eurydice, House and Garden, Orson’s Shadow, Mr. Marmalade, Theater District, Present Laughter and Love! Valour! Compassion! Other local credits include King Lear and Betrayal (Oregon Shakespeare Festival/Portland); Burn This, The Lisbon Traviata, Klonsky and Schwartz and The Glass Menagerie (Profile Theatre); Fuente Ovejuna (Miracle Theatre); Edward II, Bent and Jeffrey (triangle productions!); As You Like It and The Winter’s Tale (Tygres Heart Shakespeare); The Rivals, Comfort and Joy, Macbeth and Mrs. Warren’s Profession (Portland Center Stage); A Christmas Carol (A Contemporary Theatre) and A Hatful of Rain, Laughing Wild, and The Importance of Being Earnest (New Rose Theatre). New York credits include The Merchant of Venice (Revolving Shakespeare Co.); Leontes in The Winter’s Tale (Theatre 1010); The Normal Heart (Lincoln Center/Clark Studio Theatre); Behind These Eyes (Genesius Guild) and Rebecca In Waiting (The Barrow Group). Regional credits include work at PCPA Theatrefest, Paper Mill Playhouse, Saint Michael’s Playhouse, Penobscot Theatre Company, Arkansas Repertory Theatre, First Stage Milwaukee, Idaho Rep, Attic Theater and Wisconsin, Utah and Berkeley Shakespeare Festivals. In addition to the role of Felix Artifex in Mistakes Were Made, Mendelson will appear in Artists Rep’s April production of The Quality of Life.
Dámaso Rodriguez, Associate Director
Dámaso Rodriguez joined Artists Rep as artistic director in July of 2013. His Artists Rep directing credits include Ten Chimneys by Jeffrey Hatcher and The Big Meal by Dan LeFranc, along with this season’s upcoming productions of Foxfinder by Dawn King and The Playboy of the Western World by J.M. Synge. He is a Co-Founder of Los Angeles’ Furious Theatre, an ensemble-driven company committed to daring new plays of visceral impact, where he served as Co-Artistic Director from 2001-2012. From 2007-2010, he served as Associate Artistic Director of the Pasadena Playhouse. His directing credits include work at Artists Repertory Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse, Intiman Theatre, South Coast Repertory, Laguna Playhouse, A Noise Within, The Theatre@Boston Court, Odyssey Theatre and Furious Theatre, among others. Dámaso is a recipient of the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award, the Back Stage Garland Award, the NAACP Theatre Award, and the Pasadena Arts Council’s Gold Crown Award. In 2010, Furious Theatre Company was named to LA Weekly’s list of “Best Theatres of the Decade.” In 2012, he was honored as a Finalist for the Zelda Fichandler Award. He is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.
Artists Repertory Theatre
The 2013/14 Artists Repertory Theatre season is presented by the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. Premiere season sponsors are Ronni Lacroute/WillaKenzie Estate and The Oregonian. Season hotel sponsors are The Mark Spencer Hotel and Hotel deLuxe. The 2013/14 radio sponsor is KINK.FM. Other support comes from Regional Arts Culture Council, Work for Art, Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Cultural Trust, Harold and Arlene Schnitzer CARE Foundation, Meyer Memorial Trust, The James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation and Poster Garden.
Founded in 1982, Artists Repertory Theatre is the longest-running professional theatre company in Portland. Artists Rep is committed to world-class acting, directing, design and stagecraft that support new playwriting and aspires to embody great literature, moving audiences to truly feel — to experience — storytelling in a way that only the best live theatre can.
Portland’s premiere mid-size regional theatre company is led by Artistic Director Dámaso Rodriguez and Managing Director Sarah Horton. For the 2013/14 season Artists Rep will offer nine bold and entertaining new plays written by internationally acclaimed playwrights, and guided by esteemed directors. Artists Rep productions will feature the work of a core group of accomplished Resident Artists, each with a shared history and a shorthand for collaboration, working alongside guest artists from Portland and beyond.
Our Mission: Artists Repertory Theatre challenges artists and audiences with adventurous and provocative plays staged in an intimate environment. Artists Rep feeds our community’s artistic soul with premieres, re-imagined classics, new play development and educational outreach.