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ST. NICHOLAS

VIEWS: 23 PAGES: 8

									                                    ST. NICHOLAS
                                        by
                                Conor McPherson
                         A Second Story Theater Production
                Performed by Michael McGee - Directed by Scott Paulin

                             LA TIMES - CRITICS' CHOICE!
"Vampires or theater critics—which are more repellent? Tough call when they’re bloodsuckers,
 the lot of ’em—an opinion that Irish playwright Conor McPherson explored to often hilarious
 and always spellbinding effect in his early-career monologue gem.... Scott Paulin’s superbly-
 staged 2nd Story Theater revival stars Michael McGee. McGee’s perfectly inflected cadences
  sweep us up in McPherson’s signature combination of Irish gift for gab and intricate, tightly
                     paced narrative form." Philip Brandes, LA TIMES

                                      LA WEEKLY - GO!
"Irish playwright Conor McPherson mirthfully paints a theater critic as a bloodsucker in his
early mono-drama, which receives a standout revival by director Scott Paulin. Michael McGee
does the honors as an anonymous, ego-bitten and self described "well-paid hack" (i.e. drama
critic). McPherson's tinkering with the vampire myth is a clever literary sleight of hand, but the
ease of his narrative and its animated density, the shades of humor and poignancy, and McGee's
textured performance make for a terrific outing." (Lovell Estell III)

                               BACKSTAGE - CRITIC'S PICK!
 "... All of helmer Scott Paulin's choices here make sense.... McGee spins the tangled tale and
 keeps us captivated and thoroughly convinced he's the hack writer from Dublin, the sot whom
 theatermakers feared, with quite the adventure to recount and, we hope, lesson to be learned
                        about self-reflection." Dany Margolies, Backstage

   "Under SCOTT PAULIN’s masterful direction, actor MICHAEL MCGEE coaxes out the
  beguiling music coursing through McPherson’s lines and commands hearty laughs from the
                       audience." Greg Simay BurbankNBeyond.com

  "If you want to see acting at its very best, then you must see Michael McGee’s extraordinary
   performance at the SFS Theatre on Melrose. Director Scott Paulin does a dynamite job of
                          directing." Online Reviews by Cynthia Citron

ST. NICHOLAS was presented by Second Story Theater in special arrangement with
Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York. It opened on Friday, June 18,2010 and ran for six
weeks at the Stephanie Feury Studio Theatre, 5636 Melrose Ave. in Los Angeles. A webpage
exists: http://www.stnicholasplay.com/

ST. NICHOLAS - St. Nicholas was first produced at the Bush Theatre, London, on February 19,
1997. It was originally produced in the United States by Primary Stages Company, New York,
Casey Childs, Artistic Director, on March 17, 1998.




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Second Story Theater Presents ST. NICHOLAS, Opens 6/18 by
                 BWW News Desk
                 Second Story Theatre presents ST. NICHOLAS, written by Tony Award-
                 winning playwright Conor McPherson (The Seafarer, The Weir), directed
                 by Scott Paulin (Getting Frankie Married, The Roads to Home) and
                 performed by Michael McGee. ST. NICHOLAS will open on Friday, June 18
                 at 8pm and will run for six weeks through Sunday, July 25th (there will be
                 no performances the Fourth of July weekend) at the SFS Theatre, 5636
                 Melrose Ave. (at Larchmont) in Los Angeles.

                 ST. NICHOLAS is Conor McPherson's wry and ribald tale of a jaded, skirt-
                 chasing Irish theater critic (Michael McGee) who falls hopelessly in love
                 with a young and heartbreakingly beautiful dancer/actress from the famed
                 Abbey theater in Dublin. Following young Helen to London the critic is
                 drawn into a world of big city vampires, elegant and sophisticated, and in
                 the end, soulless. It is an often-hilarious journey of desperate love and
                 agonizing self-discovery. It is also a witty assault on modern culture, where
                 too often greed and self-gratification replace reflection and generosity of
                 spirit.

ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM

Conor McPherson (Playwright) was born in Dublin, the son of a business and accounting
teacher. Educated at University College Dublin, McPherson began writing his first plays there
as a member of the college's dramatic society, and went on to found Fly By Night Theater
Company which produced several of his plays. He is considered one of the best
contemporary Irish playwrights. The Weir opened at the Royal Court before transferring to
the West End and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Play for 1999.

His 2001 play, Port Authority premiered at the New Ambassadors Theatre in London in
February 2001, before moving to Dublin's Gate Theatre in April of that year. The production
was directed by McPherson himself. The Atlantic Theater Company staged a production of
the play in spring of 2008. Says New York Times critic Ben Brantley, "I found myself holding
on to what these actors had to say as if I were a 5-year-old at bedtime being introduced to
‘The Arabian Nights.'"

McPherson also directed his play, Dublin Carol, at the Atlantic Theater Company in 2003.
His 2004 play Shining City prompted the London Telegraph to describe him as "the finest
dramatist of his generation..." A meditation on regret, guilt and confusion, the play is set
entirely within the Dublin offices of a psychiatrist who himself has psychological secrets. It
subsequently opened on Broadway in 2006 and was nominated for two Tony Awards,
including Best Play. In September 2006, to great critical acclaim, McPherson made his
National Theatre debut as both author and director with The Seafarer. Jim Norton won an
Olivier Award for his performance while McPherson was nominated for both the Olivier and
Evening Standard Awards for Best Play. In October 2007 The Seafarer came to Broadway
keeping with it most of its creative team, including McPherson as director (with stage and
film actor David Morse taking over as Sharky, and Ciarán Hinds portraying Mr. Lockhart.)
The production on Broadway received rave reviews. "McPherson is quite possibly the finest
playwright of his generation" wrote Ben Brantley at the New York Times. Jim Norton's
performance as Richard Harkin in The Seafarer at The National Theatre won the 2007 Best
Supporting Actor Laurence Olivier Award, and he picked up a Tony Award in 2008 for Best
Featured Actor in a play. McPherson wrote and directed a stage adaptation of Daphne Du



                                                                                                 2
Maurier's story The Birds, which opened in September 2009 at the Gate Theatre in Dublin.
The film of his first screenplay, "I Went Down," was critically acclaimed and a great
commercial success. His first feature film as a director, "Saltwater," won the CICAE award
for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival. His second feature film was The Actors, which he
wrote and directed.

SCOTT PAULIN (Director) is a director and actor living and working in Los Angeles. He
began performing in the San Francisco Bay Area in the 1970s appearing at The Magic
Theater, The Berkeley Repertory Theater, The Berkeley Stage Company, and the Eureka
Theater where he received the Bay Area Theater Critics Circle Best Actor Award for his
performance as Pavlo in the West Coast Premiere of David Rabe's The Basic Training of
Pavlo Hummel. He began directing at The Bay Area Playwrights Festival with Bill Talen's
adaptation of Tolstoy's short story The Gambler. Since moving to Los Angeles in 1980 he
has worked extensively in the theater, film and television. He has directed a number of
plays by Horton Foote including The Roads to Home, The Midnight Caller, Blind Date, and
The One-Armed Man (the last three one-acts performed together as Harrison, Texas) at The
Second Story Theater. His production of Getting Frankie Married---and Afterwards by Mr.
Foote, recently closed at The Open Fist Theater in Hollywood. He directed the World
Premiere of Nicolas Kazan's The Good Soldier at The Odyssey, John Patrick Shanley's
Welcome to the Moon, and Four Dogs and A Bone, Tennessee Williams' 27 Wagons Full of
Cotton, Michel Tremblay's Johnny Mangano and his Astonishing Dogs (Trois Petit Tours),
and The Woolgatherer by William Mastrosimone at The Second Story Theater. In the last
year he has performed in Laura Richardson's comedy Come Back Little Horny and Shock
Therapy by Tom Baum at The Lillian Theater. He has also directed thirty-five hours of
television drama winning the Humanitas Prize for an episode of the NBC civil rights drama
I'll Fly Away. As an actor he has guest starred in more than one hundred hours of television
drama, mini-series, and MOWs and he has played leading roles in feature films including
The Right Stuff, A Soldier's Story, Cat People, Pump Up the Volume, Turner and Hooch, The
Accused, and I Am Sam. He is married to actress Wendy Phillips and is the father of Jenny
Dare Paulin, also an actress, living in New York.

MICHAEL MCGEE (Man) Mr. McGee's San Francisco, productions include: TANGO, THE
ADDING MACHINE, CRIMES OF THE HEART, GEMINI, THE BRIDGE, LYSISTRATA, BLEACHER
BUMS, performed at: The StageGroup Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Shelton Theatre,
Berkeley Jewish Theatre and other theatres. He also directed a production of Pinter's THE
HOTHOUSE for the San Francisco Actor's Theatre. Los Angeles highlights: McGee directed
Gorky's THE LOWER DEPTHS on Skid Row, with homeless artists and actors. He continued
working on Skid Row with, the late Scott Kelman of Pipeline Productions, developing shows
for Skid Row workshops with music, poetry and acting, funded by Los Angeles Cultural
Affairs. McGee played, Polonius, in a production of HAMLET directed and starring Bruce
Beatty with a cast including Don Cheadle, Jesse Borrego, Michael Boatman, David Duensing
and others. He appeared in the 2nd Story Theater production of, HARRISON, TEXAS, three
plays by Horton Foote, directed by Scott Paulin. McGee has appeared in several independent
films playing featured roles and has a starring role in the award winning comedic feature
"THE RAT THING" written, directed by and with Kevin Keresey, the film played this year at
the Cannes Independent Film Festival. McGee also writes and he, along with
screenwriter/novelist Matt Benjamin, founded and ran a screenwriters workshop for inmates
at Terminal Island Federal Correctional Institution in Long Beach for 3 years.

Additional Production: Producers: Michael Geary, Lisa Blake / Stg. Mgr: Sam Grant /
Lighting Design: Christopher Singleton / Graphics Art: Alan Savanapridi –Spilled Ink Media



                                                                                              3
ST. NICHOLAS will open on Friday, June 18 and will run for six weeks through Sunday, July
25th at the SFS Theatre, 5636 Melrose Ave.. (at Larchmont) in Los Angeles. Performances
are Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm; Sundays at 4pm. www.stnicholasplay.com.




Photos: Michael McGee. Photo credit: Michael Tighe

         For online links Google – St. Nicholas by Conor McPherson Michael McGee
          VIDEO EXCERPTS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XmJiUHWIA4
           Contact: Michael McGee – (310) 405-4804 PO Box 2925 Venice, CA 90294
                     info@stnicholasplay.com / www.stnicholasplay.com



                                                                                            4
June 25, 2010 – LA TIMES - CRITICS’ CHOICE!




Photo: Michael McGee. Photo credit: Michael Tighe

Vampires or theater critics—which are more repellent? Tough call when they’re bloodsuckers,
the lot of ’em—an opinion that Irish playwright Conor McPherson explored to often hilarious
and always spellbinding effect in his early-career monologue gem, “St. Nicholas.” Scott Paulin’s
superbly-staged 2nd Story Theater revival stars Michael McGee as the play’s unnamed
narrator—an acerbic, egomaniacal drama critic (is there any other kind?) who winds up pimping
victims for a nest of vamps.

McGee’s perfectly inflected cadences sweep us up in McPherson’s signature combination of
Irish gift for gab and intricate, tightly paced narrative form. It's a refreshing change from the
usual solo performance fare of autobiographical confessionals or celebrity portraits. The gripping
yarn opens with the character's midlife realization of the rot at the core of his parasitic
existence—glibly stringing words together without real thought or opinion. A desperate
infatuation with a beautiful actress leads him from one romantic illusion to another dreamworld
inhabited by the benignly mundane vampires who enlist him to entice prey to their non-lethal
house parties, where they drink small amounts of their guests’ blood and afterwards erase all
memories of the encounter.

Playing fast and loose with vampire mythology, McPherson employs the supernatural to hold a
mirror up to human nature. Ironically, the qualities that ultimately arouse the narrator’s revulsion
for vampires—their lack of capacity for reflection and conscience—are the very faults that he
mistakes for his own virtues. As Oscar Wilde once observed, “Criticism is the sincerest form of
autobiography.”– Philip Brandes

“St. Nicholas,” SFS Theatre, 5636 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles. 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 4
p.m. Sundays (dark July 4th weekend). Ends July 25. $20. (323) 960-5296 or
www.stnicholasplay.com. Running time: 1 hour, 40 minutes.


                                                                                                   5
St. Nicholas
Second Story Theatre at the SFS Theatre




Reviewed by Dany Margolies / Backstage

July 01, 2010

Some people feed off others. The ones who do it best don't let their victims know it was even
done. That's enviable power. But what of those for whom power is closely shadowed by a sense
of responsibility? In Conor McPherson's one-person script, the plausible and the unearthly make
solid bedfellows.

At the top of the play, actor Michael McGee enters down the center aisle. Usually a
paradoxically distracting directorial choice, here it makes sense—as do all of helmer Scott
Paulin's choices. The character is a theater critic, usually seated in the house, usually an observer,
who breaks through the fourth wall in the other direction to stand onstage and describe his world
to the rest of us.

McPherson gives us ample chances to decide whether the critic's story is a dream, an exaggerated
pub tale, or the truth. After the critic told a particularly cruel lie, he came in contact with
vampires whose ordinariness is more frightening than our romanticized visions of them. As
McGee spins the tangled tale, he paces, briefly perches, returns to the center aisle, drinks out of a
stein, and in general keeps us captivated and thoroughly convinced he's the hack writer from
Dublin, the sot whom theatermakers feared, with quite the adventure to recount and, we hope,
lesson to be learned about self-reflection.

The uncredited set adds much to the moodiness of the evening, enhancing the symbolism of
theatricality and a shadowy world. Gently shimmering at us from behind a gauzy black curtain,
jumbled stage furniture is lit by tiny lamps that fade on and off.

What does the play's title signify? Could it acknowledge the patron saint of gifts? After all, they
say the Irish have the gift of storytelling.
Presented by Second Story Theatre at the SFS Theatre, 5636 Melrose Ave., L.A. June 18–July
25. Fri.–Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 4 p.m. (Dark July 2–4.) (323) 960-5296. www.stnicholasplay.com.

          For online links Google – St. Nicholas by Conor McPherson Michael McGee
           VIDEO EXCERPTS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XmJiUHWIA4
            Contact: Michael McGee – (310) 405-4804 PO Box 2925 Venice, CA 90294
                       info@stnicholasplay.com / www.stnicholasplay.com




                                                                                                      6
             LA WEEKLY – July 9-15, 2010 / Vol. 32 / No. 33 LAWEEKLY.COM
NEW REVIEW – GO! - ST. NICHOLAS Irish playwright Conor McPherson mirthfully paints
a theater critic as a bloodsucker in his early mono-drama, which receives a standout revival by
director Scott Paulin. Michael McGee does the honors as an anonymous, ego-bitten and self
described "well-paid hack" (i.e. drama critic) who becomes a willing procurer for a clan of
vampires. "People were afraid of me," he quips, reflecting on his power to make or break careers,
with a pen he joyfully wielded like an envenomed rapier. However, the utter corruption of his
existence finds its fullest expression when he falls for an actress he encountered at a performance
of Salome. Unbeknownst to the poor fellow, she is a member of a vampire clan, and it isn't long
before he is willingly luring unsuspecting victims into their den, where they are plowed with
drink, revelry, and relieved of their blood, as well as all memories of the encounter. Call it
vampire light, void of Stoker but with a touch of Anne Rice. McPherson's tinkering with the
vampire myth is a clever literary sleight of hand, but the ease of his narrative and its animated
density, the shades of humor and poignancy, and McGee's textured performance make for a
terrific outing. SFS Theater, 5636 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun. 4 p.m., thru
July 25. (323) 960-5296. (Lovell Estel III)




Photo: Michael McGee. Photo credit: Michael Tighe




                                                                                                 7
                                 LA STAGE ALLIANCE
              Your production of ST. NICHOLAS is OVATION RECOMMENDED!

Hello!
I'm pleased to inform you that your production of ST. NICHOLAS is now Ovation
Recommended, as judged by the body of Ovation Voters who have currently attended and
scored your production. This identification means that the Ovation voters
have placed your production in the top 20% of all productions for this
season, based on their scores in the 'Overall Production' category.
We encourage you to use the phrase 'Ovation Recommended' in your advertisements and
marketing for the rest of the run of your production, and have provided the attached logos and
language to assist you. The Ovation Recommended logo will also appear on the LA Stage
Alliance websites and in all LA Stage Alliance materials and publications whenever the name of
your production appears.

How Ovation Recommended Status is Determined: Once a production has had at least eight (8)
Ovation voters attend and cast their ballots, it is eligible to become Ovation Recommended. After that
point, if at any time the average overall production score for that production rises to the level which would
have placed it in the top 20% of productions for the previous Ovation Season, it will become Ovation
Recommended.

Once a production gains Recommended status, it cannot lose that status, even if subsequent voters who
attend score the production poorly and its average overall production score declines. Ovation
Recommended status is only to help communicate to the general public, during the show's run, that the
production is highly successful 'overall'.

The Ovations Review Committee consists of 13 professionals from the Los Angeles theatre
community, who serve staggered seven year terms. The Committee is chaired by a member of
the LA Stage Alliance Board of Governors.


                                CONTACT
         Michael McGee – info@stnicholasplay.com (310) 405-4804
     PO Box 2925 Venice, CA 90294 - Webpage: www.stnicholasplay.com
     VIDEO excerpts - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XmJiUHWIA4




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