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Cookeville Playwright Shares Comedy Of Humans in “The Bathroom”

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Cookeville Playwright Shares Comedy Of Humans in “The Bathroom”

Local playwright Laura Holloway continues the premier of her original play “The Bathroom” at Storyteller House this Thursday and Friday in Cookeville.

Holloway said she originally came up with the idea while watching a series of real life characters come and go while she waited for a friend in a restaurant bathroom. She said her favorite scene from the play was based on a story of unrequited and very uncomfortable love told to her by a friend in the restaurant business.

“And then I started creating other characters around it,” Holloway said. “But the aha moment was, this is a hilarious scene. She doesn’t want to be with the guy anyway. She regretted the whole thing. That was the moment that “The Bathroom” really came together for me I think. And I started really putting it own on paper.”

Holloway said there were challenges in finding time to write and she eventually requested a weekend away from her rambunctious boys. She said her husband gave her a writing weekend in Seaside, Florida for her birthday in February.

Holloway said she holed up in tiny cottage against the cold gray winter.  She said when she couldn’t write, she would walk to nearby restaurants and listen to the conversations around her until she felt ready to write again.

“It all happened within a weekend,” Holloway said. “I came back and tweaked it here and there and called together some people in the theater community whom I truly admire and said will you sit down for a table read. I need to hear this out loud.”

Holloway said from there she moved on to auditions. She said the rehearsal process for the show was very different with the expectation that everyone would be off-book [script memorized] on day one. She said additionally they had only five rehearsals prior to opening.

“We were able to get it on its feet and really start playing with the characters and the material,” Holloway said. “And in some of those moments, some things with the script I changed them because organically they just flowed differently in a different way.”

Holloway said even the final line of the show was changed the night before final dress.

“I said there’s just something missing,” Holloway said.

She said Bruce Anderson and Kristy Herr who play the roles in the scene stayed to try some things.

“And what was settled on is just such a beautiful moment,” Holloway said. “And so many people have said to me, I can’t believe it ends that way. It was perfect.”

The Bathroom was extended from its originally planned three night engagement to include shows on Thursday July 28 and Friday July 29 at 6 p.m. Friday is sold out.

“We’re not taking reservations for the Thursday night show,” Holloway said. “It’s kind of just show up and the doors open at 7 p.m. and whoever is in the seats when we fill up, that’s when we close the doors.”

Storyteller Theater 1227 N. Washington Ave. in Cookeville.



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