FOREVER PLAID #16! at ArtisTree Music Theatre Festival

Had a blast directing FOREVER PLAID (my 16th production) at ArtisTree Music Theatre Festival. We opened Friday, October 11 and run through the 26th. It’s a beautiful space in a beautiful place, and Artistic Director Josh D. Smith has brought together a hardworking family of talented professionals to make the work really excellent and worthwhile. If you’re in/near VT the next few weeks, check it out!

L-R: Ben Lurye (Sparky), Patrick Scholl (Frankie), Nick Endsley (Jinx), and Joseph B. Strickland (Smudge)

L-R: Ben Lurye (Sparky), Patrick Scholl (Frankie), Nick Endsley (Jinx), and Joseph B. Strickland (Smudge)

As for revisiting FOREVER PLAID again—it means so much, it’s hard to put into words. I’ll just reprint my Director’s Notes from the program here:


“I DIDN’T INTEND FOR THE SHOW TO BE A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE,” writes Forever Plaid author Stuart Ross, IN ALL CAPS, in his notes that preface the script. “It is supposed to be like the reverse of Back to the Future. We are showing what would happen if people with a 1950s sensibility came to [the present day.]”

Sixteen productions in, and having worked on the show on both sides of the footlights, my perspective on the show continues to evolve. Underneath the catchy tunes and witty script Forever Plaid is many things: a story of second chances, a backstager, a jukebox revue. Lately, it resonates most deeply with me as a ghost story. How would you respond if you were offered the opportunity to return from the beyond to resolve the unresolved, to complete the unfinished? As you sit in your seat reading this, think…what parts of your life would you fix, what relationships would you repair?

Thematically similar to Carousel or The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, in its scant 90-minute running time Forever Plaid doesn’t wait around. It was written during the AIDS-era late 1980s and ran in New York from 1990-94, when scores of people in the arts were dying, often with very little warning. What other revue manages to be so entertaining, and yet pose so many big questions: if we know that no one is guaranteed a tomorrow, what are you doing with your today? how do you find your family when your blood family lets you down? how do you own your life for what it is?

The songs of Forever Plaid traffic in real, sincere, straightforward emotion in a manner completely contrary to today’s ironic world. This musical celebrates the value of having good manners and decorum. Every performance is different because the audience is a character in the play. It’s just the songs, the Plaids, the instrumentalists, and you. And a professional cast like you’re seeing in this production ensures that you’re seeing Forever Plaid at its best.

Sharing music together can be a means of healing the parts of us that are broken. When the Plaids were alive, the lyrics of these songs offered them a kind of salvation, a forecast for their futures, a reason to hope. They’re waiting for the words to come true. And in a way, aren’t we all?


Couldn’t be more thrilled! Alan Campbell is going to be terrific in WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION - you’ve seen him in court before on “Jake and the Fatman” and as Juror #8 in “Twelve Angry Men”…very much looking forward to seeing what he does as Sir Wilfrid Robarts in this Agatha Christie masterpiece.

SEXY LAUNDRY at Millbrook Playhouse

Love my time at Millbrook Playhouse—this year was my 4th show there! Directing SEXY LAUNDRY was a true pleasure; my first two hander and my first show at Millbrook where no one dies! (Previously I had done WAIT UNTIL DARK in 2017, STEEL MAGNOLIAS in 2016, and DIAL ‘M’ FOR MURDER in 2015.)

Elizabeth Simmons & Michael Maloney in SEXY LAUNDRY at Millbrook Playhouse (2019)

Elizabeth Simmons & Michael Maloney in SEXY LAUNDRY at Millbrook Playhouse (2019)

Reuniting with Michael Maloney and Elizabeth Simmons (both of whom have worked at Judson Theatre Company) for this charming two-hander was a wonderful working vacation, just the right amount of time to be out of the city and get back to the basics of what made me love theatre in the first place. Made many new friends and got to see several longtime pals who were working on other shows there.

Reviews were solid too:

“And finally, to director Morgan Sills: kudos for taking a comedy about two characters in a motel room and eliciting such multi-layered performances.”

Read the full review here

Millbrook audiences have called it “the best production ever” in the cabaret space, and many of the performances were sold out. So a very happy time all around, and a most grateful director.

Judson Theatre Company 2019 - Season Eight!

Proud to announce Judson Theatre Company’s Eighth Season! Our 2019 shows are the hilarious comedy SOUVENIR by Stephen Temperley and the classic Agatha Christie thriller WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION.

SOUVENIR, a fantasia on the life of Florence Foster Jenkins, plays Thursday, May 9 - Sunday, May 12 at the Hannah Center Theatre. WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION plays Thursday, November 21-Sunday, November 24 at Bradshaw Performing Arts Center (formerly Owens Auditorium).

Most new theatre companies fail in their first 3-5 years. Here we are in our eighth, and though there’s still much work to be done, in many ways we’re thriving—and that’s thanks to everyone who is part of the JTC family. Join us for Season 8! Tickets on sale at