Miami Hamilton's Colligan History Project partners with Mad Anthony Theatre Company

Sondheim on Sondheimby Ruth Orth, Miami University Regionals

The Michael J. Colligan History Project will be partnering with the Mad Anthony Theatre Company at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts to sponsor a series of three plays, each touching on different aspects of American history. In advance of these performances, the Colligan series “Staging the Past” comprises three original public events exploring the historical context for each play.

“Everybody Wants to Be Sondheim” 7:30 p.m. Oct. 7

Praised by the New York Daily News as “one of the most ingenious practitioners in his profession,” Middletown native Larry Moore has worked in New York on musical theatre restoration, editing, orchestration, choral arranging and recording since 1979. The presentation considers Stephen Sondheim’s role in Moore’s life and reviews 40 years of American musical theatre.

It will be presented ahead of “Sondheim on Sondheim,” a “funny, affectionate and revealing tribute to musical theater’s greatest living composer and lyricist in his own words and music.” It will be staged at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts Oct. 15-18.   

“Henry Ford: Fit to a ‘T’” 7:30 p.m. Feb. 9

In 1932, union vs. management confrontations are on the rise, unemployment is rampant, and communism and fascism appear viable. Henry Ford, who put the world on wheels, thinks he has a solution. During this interactive play, Ford will talk to car dealers about his past, the new Ford V-8 and the future of soybeans. This dramatic presentation will be performed by Hank Fincken, A National Theatre Company of One from Indianapolis, Ind.

It occurs ahead of “Camping with Henry and Tom,” a “witty, elegant and enormously entertaining” exploration of the friendship, politics and leadership of Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and Warren G. Harding. It is to be staged at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts Feb. 18-21.

“Hemingway, Fitzgerald, & the Lost (?) Generation” 7:30 p.m. May 5

Donald A. Daiker, Miami University professor emeritus of English, will examine Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s love-hate relationship that began the moment they met at the Dingo Bar in Paris in 1925. Fitzgerald proved to be the more generous friend but Hemingway the more successful writer, in part thanks to Fitzgerald’s help. Both rejected the lost generation tag, but both helped to create, perpetuate, glamorize and even live it.

This presentation precedes “Scott and Hem,” a drama about the cost of love and friendship and the price of being a writer. It’s a rambling 1937 conversation between Fitzgerald and Hemingway in Hollywood, to be staged at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts May 12-15.

The Michael J. Colligan History Project is a partnership of the Colligan Fund Committee of the Hamilton Community Foundation and Miami University Hamilton. Its goals are bringing the past to life, creating historical thinking and building community identity.

For more information call (513) 785-3277 or visit The Fitton Center for Creative Arts is located at 101 S. Monument Ave in Hamilton. Colligan Project programs are free and open to the public. The Fitton Center box office can be reached at (513) 863-8873.