“This production is a love letter to our time at TheaterNow,” Pineapple-Shaped Lamps’ Wesley Brown tells encore of their final show of 2016, “PSL Gets Evicted.” Each year Pineapple-Shaped Lamps ends their season with a grand finale at TheatreNOW and Brown says they’re tackling their most ambitious production yet, which will run this week on Wednesday, Dec. 14, and Saturday, Dec. 17.
The premise of the show starts with local real-estate magnate Ed Wagenseller (played by the one and only Ed Wagenseller himself), who has bought up every theater in town with the intention of demolishing all of them to make room for a chain of Starbucks coffee shops. His final conquest: TheatreNOW! The question is: Will Brown (as Michael Cera) and the rest of the PSL troupe be able to save TheatreNOW before it’s too late?
Brown took some time to tell more about PSL’s season finale. SPOILER ALERT: There are no spoilers.
encore (e): Tell me a about your last show of the year and what it will entail.
Wesley Brown (WB): This is one of the most ambitious shows we have ever attempted. Much like last year’s finale, “PSL Gets Evicted” follows a linear storyline with sketches interwoven within the narrative of what has essentially become a two-act play. The show is sketch based, but it is one big sketch in a way. Everything in this show connects in some way.
e: Who wrote it? What was that process like between you all?
WB: We had about a dozen people write for this show. An amazing thing about PSL is that we have such a wide variety of writers who really make the show into something special. The writers for this show are: Mike Lee, Chris Warren, Marty Cunningham, Emily Gomez, Drew Scheid, Beau Mumford, Zeb Mims, Devin DiMattia, Lucy O’Brien,Travis Sirois, Chris Lewis, and, our head writer, Alex Denning.
e: Who all will be in it? Playing whom?
WB: This is one of the biggest casts we have ever had for a show. We are honored to have Ed Wagenseller as our host for the fourth year in a row! He makes these December shows special every year. The cast includes: Jessica Gift, Matt Carter, Zeb Mims, Katherine Rosner, Phill Antonino, Beau Mumford, Drew Scheid, Holly Cole Brown, Chris Lewis, Jordan Vogt, Jamie Davenport, Markivious Spicer, Josh Browner, and me. It is an ensemble show; we are playing multiple parts each, while also play exaggerated versions of ourselves.
e: It says “witness the epic conclusion”; has there been a part one and encore failed to realize?
WB: Our lips are sealed on this! But we promise; this is one show you won’t forget.
e: What are some of the elements of this show you think audiences will connect to most?
WB: It’s hard to say anything without spoiling the show, but what we will say is that Ed’s arc in this show is quite relevant to how some people may feel when an endeavor may not work the way you foresaw it happening. I know that’s really vague, but believe us when we say you’ve got to see Ed’s Magnum Opus. Also, at its core it is a fun filled comedy epic and with the multitude of writers, there will be something for everyone.
e: What are some of its themes?
WB: Again, we don’t want to spoil anything, but we did take inspiration from a certain Charles Dickens story. One theme that did inspire this show was the theme of camaraderie. We have our back against the wall throughout the show, but the one constant we have, even as things get messy, is each other. We are a tight collection of actors, writers, behind-the-scenes crew (who don’t get nearly enough credit, I mean, Luis Gonzaga is the best costumer we’ve ever had), so it’s only fitting that we reflect our closeness by showing it in this fun show.