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PHOTOS: Lend Me a Tenor at the Old Log Theatre

Parallel lives (for an evening) in the Old Log Theatre’s production ofLend Me a Tenor: Max (David Beukema) and Tito Merelli (Luke Davidson)’s lives become unexpectedly mirrored. Photo courtesy of the Old Log Theatre.

Out Excelsior-way, the Old Log Theatre has been playing Lend Me a Tenor. This is the play that made Ken Ludwig, the playwright behind last summer’s Baskerville at Park Square Theatre, famous. No less than Frank Rich of the New York Times praised the play – Ludwig’s first – as one of the best farces by a living playwright when Lend Me a Tenor opened on Broadway in 1989.

Like many farces, Lend Me a Tenor turns on mistaken identities and intentions. In this case, the famous tenor Tito Merelli (Luke Davidson) is presumed dead shortly before a performance; to avoid refunding tickets, aspiring opera singer Max (David Beukema) is thrust onstage in heavy makeup. Add some police, love on the rocks, and a couple parallel scenes and sexual escapades, and there’s a farce in 130 minutes. The recipe is highly popular: the play has been published in 16 languages and produced across the globe.

Here’s a look at the Old Log’s production of Lend Me a Tenor, directed by Eric Morris, with scenic and lighting design by Erik Paulson, sound design by Jeff Geisler, costume designs by Morgan Potter, and hair wig designs by Paul Bigot, and props by Abbee Warmboe:

Opera singer Diana (Elena Glass) has an eye on opera star Tito Merelli. Photo courtesy of the Old Log Theatre.
Tito Merelli (Luke Davidson) meets with Opera Guild Chairwoman Julia (Melanie Wehrmacher). Photo courtesy of the Old Log Theatre.
A promotional photo for Lend Me a Tenor. Clockwise from upper left: actors Luke Davidson, David Beukema, and McKinnley Aitchison. Photo courtesy of the Old Log Theatre.
James Detmar as opera impressario Henry Saunders. Photo courtesy of the Old Log Theatre.
Opera Guild president Julia (Melanie Wehrmacher) and Maggie (McKinnley Aitchison) discuss matters. Photo courtesy of the Old Log Theatre.

Lend Me a Tenor plays at the Old Log Theatre in Excelsior, MN through February 16, 2019.

Twin Cities Arts Reader