'Convention: Two Days of Comic Books Gone Bad' to open Sept. 13
by Marie Nesmith
Sep 05, 2013 | 1944 views | 0 0 comments | 39 39 recommendations | email to a friend | print
As the director of “Convention: Two Days of Comic Books Gone Bad,” Tony Bowers is tapping into familiar territory. Set at a comic book convention, The Pumphouse Players’ production will open Sept. 13 in downtown Cartersville.

“The play centers around four young women who produce a self-published comic book called ‘The Blue Staircase.’... [This] is a world I know,” Bowers said, referring to the reason he wanted to bring “Convention” to the Cartersville stage. “Basically, long before I was acting or directing, I was into fandom. I’d describe myself as just a big geek.

“One of the reasons also [that I wanted to direct this play was] we just had Dragon Con this past weekend in Atlanta. The Legion cannot even do a show on Labor Day weekend because most of the group is at Dragon Con. So I knew right there and then that this was a good show for us to do.”

Led by Lucy Simpson, Alaina Anderson, Jen Garrett and Jessica Terry, the cast of “Convention” also will feature Stephen Mullinax, Alex LaVelle, Timothy Whalen, Andrew Bearden, Mike Davis, Kandy Arnold, Ivy Arnold, Dana O’Bryan, Christie Peters, Cathy McDaniel, Catherine Agan, Rebecca Simpson, Jillian Humphreys, Missi Reynolds, Ashleigh Woodall and Joey Wright. Presented at The Legion Theatre, 114 W. Main St., “Convention” will be performed Sept. 13, 14, 20 and 21 at 8 p.m., and Sept. 15 at 3 p.m.

“At the beginning of the play, they’ve arrived at the convention,” Bowers said. “They’ve gotten a good review of their book on an online website. A lot of things happen to them through the course of the play. They’re offered a movie deal. They’re offered more work with bigger publishers and they discover during the course of it that maybe the person who wrote the review doesn’t have the best of motivations for doing it.

“And there’s also two other characters besides the four women. There’s another young artist named Charles who is drawing a kids’ comic called ‘The Happy, Smiley, Bunny Family,’ and there’s another character named Leif, who’s a very nice guy who draws another comic called ‘Savage Suzanne,’ who’s consistently going outside to smoke. So they have to watch his table for him. So there’s all sorts of bizarre characters who enter and exit throughout the play that you meet.”

Joining Bowers’ name on The Pumphouse Players’ “Convention” poster is Mike Harris’ moniker. Along with serving as the PHP president, he also is the producer for the group’s upcoming production.

“Producer is a widely misunderstood term between music producers and movie producers and theater producers,” Harris said. “In theater, it’s not that difficult to understand.

“The producer takes care of all of the obligations other than the play itself,” he said, referring to duties, such as marketing, maintenance, recruiting volunteers and compiling program information. “... That’s something we started with our 39th season. Although directors in the past have had the option to appoint a producer to take care of the responsibilities outside of the theater itself ... this is the first year that we have named a producer for every one of our shows. It lightens up the responsibility and the time of the director so that the show director can focus on making the best show possible.”

Tickets for “Convention” are $14 for general admission, $12 for pre-paid groups of 10 or more people, and $10 for PHP members. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.pumphouseplayers.com or call 770-387-2610.