Final weekend for Rounding Third!

4/24/2010 Final Update:

Three more shows

Two more shows today plus a matinee tomorrow. See video capsule of the production below:

See what people are saying after the jump!

Does anyone care about the arts community anymore? Or has life been reduced to a 140 character tweet? Artistic Director of the Mile Square Theatre Chris O’Connor has this message for Hoboken residents:

“Nobody goes there anymore, it’s too crowded.”

– Yogi Berra

“Dear Loyal Supporters of Mile Square Theatre,

I wish I could say the second clause of Yogi Berra’s humorous aphorism applied to our excellent production of Rounding Third, but it doesn’t. The first half, however, stings with the truth I’m here to admit. Very few people have come out to see Rounding Third, the wonderful Richard Dresser comedy, now onstage at the Monroe Theatrespace.

As supporters of MST, you are aware of our goals: to bring quality, professional theatre to Hoboken and Hudson County that enriches the cultural landscape of our wonderful community and to present works that are universal, and yet connect uniquely to the community we live in. Rounding Third was not an arbitrary choice. It’s an extremely well-written comedy that is about friendship, parenting, and competition, set against the backdrop of little league. Audience members who have no interest in baseball have joined in the standing ovations and have showered praise on Liam Joynt’s and Matt Lawler’s stellar performances.

This is the final week of our three-week run. This show has sold at 20% capacity and the loss we are taking on this production has put the remainder of our 2010 season in jeopardy.

We are perplexed that this show isn’t selling. Is it because spring has sprung and everybody wants to be outdoors? Has tax day taken a hit on everybody? Does the subject matter not attract?

Whatever the reason, I’d like to urge you to come see the show this weekend. If finances are a consideration, I offer you a Closing Week Special: $5 off on every ticket. Just say that when you pay for your tickets at the door or call in your reservation.

But we want you to come to the theatre. If you live in Hoboken, see what it’s like to walk to the Monroe Theatrespace and see quality theatre in your own hometown. If you’re coming from further away, take advantage of our free parking or take the light rail. Have dinner at Clinton Social, Court Street, Amanda’s, or any of Hoboken’s wonderful restaurants before the show. Dinner and a show, all within walking distance in Hoboken!

What’s clear is we cannot do the work we are doing if you don’t come to the theatre.

Thanks so much for all your support and I hope to see you at the theatre,

Chris O’Connor
Artistic Director

Remaining Performance Schedule

  • MUST CLOSE 4/25 Thursday–Saturdays @ 8pm and Saturday and Sundays @ 3pm
  • CLOSING WEEK SPECIAL: $5 off Phone orders (201.208.7809) and at the door only

Order Online Reservations: $25; $15 for students/seniors

Monroe Theatrespace
720 Monroe Street, 2nd Floor, in Hoboken

4/15/2010 Reminder:

Two weeks left to see a great Hoboken play!

Did you know that the play “Rounding Third” has received critical acclaim? Well – you have two weekends to check it out before they leave town. Plus – get a bonus!

Mention this Hoboken411 post and get $5.00 off on a ticket (at the door and phone orders only)!

Tonight is Hoboken Volunteers Night. The Mile Square Theatre is donating 20% of their box office to Hoboken Volunteers, which will in turn donate the funds to the Hoboken Homeless Shelter.

  • “Anyone who has been involved with youth sports will have a great time watching this really funny, and sweet play. I loved it and so did my 10 year old daughter.” —Brian Battaglia, Battaglia`s Home
  • “I attended opening night with my mother who was visiting from Tennessee. We laughed so hard that other people started laughing at us!” —Dana Lockett-Harrison, The Fuzzy Lemons
  • “Mile Square Theatre knocks another one out of the park. What a delightful, sweet & funny play. I highly recommend it. Support local theatre.” —Geri Fallo, Director of Hoboken Cultural Affairs
  • “With quick-witted humor and back-and-forth comedic chatter, the play is well worth it!” —Hoboken Reporter
  • “For me, the strength of MST’s production is that director and cast have gone after the emotional heart of the piece rather than the easy laughs. And as a result, the comedy runs deep. I love the production.”—Richard Dresser


Rounding Third, a new play is opening in April at the Monroe Theatrespace!

When: Previews, 4/6/10 and 4/7/10 @ 8 pm • Opening: 4/8/10 @ 8pm
Special Opening Benefit Event with Hoboken Family Alliance and Project Play. (50% of box office proceeds will be donated to Project Play)

Performance Dates: 4/8/10 through 4/25/10; Thursday–Saturdays @ 8pm and Saturday and Sundays @ 3pm
Event Cost: $25; $15 for students/seniors
Event Place: Monroe Theatrespace, 720 Monroe Street, 2nd Floor – FREE PARKING

Rounding Third

By Richard Dresser

What does it mean to be a success? Is winning the only thing that matters, or is it how you play the game? For Michael and Don, two coaches of the same Little League baseball team, their answers are clear – and completely opposite.

Richard Dresser’s ROUNDING THIRD is a hilarious look at how our culture is teaching our kids— and our parents— to deal with competition and success. Starring in ROUNDING THIRD is Mile Square Theatre Associate Artistic Director Matthew Lawler (The Sopranos, Knight and Day w/ Tom Cruise) and Company member Liam Joynt (Salt w/ Angelina Jolie).

Joining the design team is scenic designer Jen Price Fick (winner of two New Hampshire Theatre Awards for best scenic design), a busy designer in regional theatres in the northeast who was assistant designer for Eugene Lee’s scenery in the Broadway production of You’re Welcome, America: a final night with George W. Bush, with Will Ferrell. Jen designed the set for last fall’s Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse.

MST resident designer Matthew Fick (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Comedy of Errors, Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse), who recently designed for the recent off-Broadway productions of Lamppost Reunion and Rough Sketch, designs lights.

Artist Bios:
RICHARD DRESSER’S plays have been produced in New York, regional theater, and Europe. His recently published trilogy of plays about happiness in America includes AUGUSTA (working class), THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS (middle class), and A VIEW OF THE HARBOR (upper class). Other plays are: ROUNDING THIRD, which started in Chicago and appeared off-Broadway and has had over one hundred productions, BELOW THE BELT and GUN-SHY, both of which started at the Humana Festival at Actors Theatre of Louisville before moving off-Broadway. Also, SOMETHING IN THE AIR, THE DOWNSIDE, ALONE AT THE BEACH, WONDERFUL WORLD, and BETTER DAYS, plus many short plays. His most recent projects include a musical, JOHNNY BASEBALL, which opens in May at A.R.T. in Cambridge, and a new play THE LAST DAYS OF MICKEY & JEAN, about a notorious Boston gangster in early retirement, which premieres in March at Merrimack Rep. He is a former member of New Dramatists, twice attended the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference and is currently teaching at Rutgers University.

Matthew Lawler is the producing director for the award-winning rUDE mECHANICALS theater company, Associate Artistic Director of Mile Square Theatre and directed My Italy Story for MST. As an actor, he has worked on Broadway, Off-Broadway and regionally. He was last seen in January at 59e59 in ” Rough Sketch”. TV and Film credits include: The Sopranos, Hope and Faith, Law &Order SVU, Law & Order(several episodes), One Life to Live (several episodes), The Jimmy Show, Anything But Love, Filmic Achievement , Happy Day. This summer Matt can be seen opposite Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz in Knight and Day directed by James Mangold. MFA: American Conservatory Theater.

Liam Joynt Off-Broadway: Metamorphoses (u/s TONY award-winning Second Stage production). Regional: The Foreigner (Arkansas Repertory Theater), Picasso at the Lapin Agile (Chautauqua), Twelfth Night (Saratoga Shakespeare Co), The Nerd (Majestic). Web: the ONION. TV: Law & Order, Guiding Light, All My Children. Film: The Beaver (Dir: Jodi Foster, w/Mel Gibson) and Salt (Dir: Phillip Noyce w/ Angelina Jolie). Liam is a Founding Director of the Young Actors Training Center, and teaches at Maggie Flanigan Studio. Training: MFA: Rutgers University; Chautauqua Theater Conservatory. AEA, AFTRA, SAG.

Marc Weitz (Director) Previous MST productions: Base, by Theresa Rebeck; Mike and the Rabbi, by Heather Woodbury. Marc is the artistic director of Purple Man Theater Company where he has directed many shows, including world premieres of Broken Hands (FringeNYC 2006), Days and Nights: page 121, lines 11 and 12 (Fringe NYC 2007), and Population: 8 (FringeNYC 2009). Other NY credits include Time Is the Mercy of Eternity, by Deb Margolin, for Six Figures Theater, and Ladyhouse Blues, with 3Graces. He has taught voice, speech and movement at a number of programs throughout the US. Member: rUDE mECHANICALS Theater Company, Lincoln Center Directors Lab.

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13 Comments on "Final weekend for Rounding Third!"

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I saw the play a couple of weeks ago and just loved it! Now mind you I bought the tickets for a friend and I to go because he has kids who play little league baseball and does coach himself so I thought HE would really like it). I have to say I thought it was wonderful – Liam and Matt were terrific!! Although I am a Mom of a daughter (who isn’t in little league) I could still relate to and appreciate the themes and “understories” of the play. And even if I couldn’t relate, I thought the play was just enjoyable and a wonderful way to spend a Saturday night! As Chris mentioned though, I was there on a Saturday night and the turnout was mediocre unfortunately.


Im going to see this play Sunday with a friend who has tickets very excited:)


It would be nice to see this thread get back on point. I know, look who’s talking.
However how about a couple of posts about what types of shows are people interested in going to see?

Mile Square, best of luck to you. You seem to take this very seriously and I have always been impressed by the quality of your stagings. Sounds like you have a bit more to do in the market research department, but I’m confident you’ll get it right. I think possibly the main problem here is that the theater’s overhead is too high to support a comfortable ticket price point for a two man show. Yes, I know the comparisons can be drawn to other entertainment venues. I don’t know about others but I have less discretionary income than a year ago and have to choose carefully, but it would be a sad day if all that had numbers that work is children’s theatre. Keep up the good (and varied) work. You’re on the right track.

Yes, it’s hard to project what people will want to see. It’s a diverse community, so I know we won’t be able to please everybody every time. My own philosophy is to try to produce work that will interest a broad spectrum of people to at least come out and check us out so we can build an audience. If they see it’s good, they will come back. We’re still very much in the audience development stage. We may have missed the boat on R3 (or just didn’t find the right way to market it). I’d love to hear folks say what they’d be interested in. Theatre overhead. Now there’s an interesting subject. Theatre is expensive to produce and we are a professional theatre and everybody gets paid. Sadly, they don’t get paid what they really deserve. Renumeration in non-profit theatre is laughable, but I’m proud to say we take the professionalism aspect seriously. Our two actors are Equity actors, but they’re not the only ones who are getting a paycheck. We have designers, stage management, box office, house staff, and production people. Add to that marketing, royalties, material costs for the set, and paying our rent, you have a hefty budget. However, if you were to compare it to a larger regional theatres or the commercial theatre, we’re still doing it on the cheap. It’s tough out there for folks, so I’m sure for many $25 for a ticket can give one pause. Perhaps we’ll go back to our… Read more »

I saw a “stroller brigade” play at the Monroe theater, with my toddler. It was called “Lily and the Plastic Purse,” although the two main characters were actually a pair of boys who were like modern day Rozencrantz and Guildensterns. The room was fairly packed on that night. The stroller brigade goes to things that cater to the stroller brigade. My 3-yr old isn’t going to sit through “Rounding Third.” But she’ll definitely sit for another Lily. In fact, she LOVED Lily. So did the double-dozen other kids.

The stroller brigade has a lot of money to spend but things have to be geared toward us if you want our money.

Answer: do more plays like Lily & her purse.

@ Homeboken – get a clue. This town was a dump before the stroller brigade arrived. It’d be a dump again within weeks if the stroller brigade were to disappear. All that would remain would be a handful of shitty college bars, and one or two decent Irish joints tucked back in on 1st Street. All the other businesses? Kaput.

Thanks for your comments about Mile Square Theatre. I’m glad your family loved Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse. Doing theatre for young audiences is part of our mission, but it is not all we do. Doing only children’s theatre would narrow our mission. We also present plays that perhaps the “stroller brigade” will want to see when their kids are older OR when they want to have a local night out without their children. I love taking my 5 year old to the theatre, but I do like to have a real date with my wife, too! You’re right, your 3-year-old will not sit through “Rounding Third,” and it’s not intended for that age (check back with us next fall when we do our next MSTKids show). But we have had plenty of families bring their older kids (10 and up) who have adored the show. We also have a recently launched drama school and have offered classes for Pre-K to high school kids. We are just about to announce our summer program, as well. In response to bmacqueens who said: I saw a “stroller brigade” play at the Monroe theater, with my toddler. It was called “Lily and the Plastic Purse,” although the two main characters were actually a pair of boys who were like modern day Rozencrantz and Guildensterns. The room was fairly packed on that night. The stroller brigade goes to things that cater to the stroller brigade. My 3-yr old isn’t going to sit through “Rounding Third.”… Read more »

That’s my point: the Wellmont was revamped AFTER the ‘stroller brigade’ arrived – long after Montclair was ‘gentrified’.