At Mr. Wheeler’s, a fast food restaurant in a rundown section of the dying inner city, a ragtag community of determined employees take another run at the Breakfast Shift. Their mundane routine is interrupted when “assistant manager” Ed finds a bag of cash in the basement that is of interest to the local drug trade.
As a teacher and education director I work with a lot of young people. Over time you become aware of various personality types, behaviors, logic, and outlook. You notice the way particular students position themselves in the world and what they are thinking about the future. Some of them can be inspiring. This was my starting point for Mr. Wheeler’s. I also love fast food.
Interestingly enough, there was very little additional script work to do since the filmmakers wanted it to have the look of a play being filmed – complete with live audience. They did a really good job – I mostly sat and watched them work. Watching the film, sitting with all the other movie-goers in a theater in downtown Pittsburgh was strange and exciting. I had a hard time paying attention. I was much more interested in watching the audience watch the movie.
It has been my mission to make what we do here accessible to young people. We’ve created dozens and dozens of programs dealing with all aspects of plays and play production with the goal of getting young people through the doors. Whether it’s seeing a play, getting acting or playwriting instruction seeing a technical theater demonstration, or performing in one of our spaces for family and friends, if they walk out of here having had a good experience and perhaps with a deeper understanding of what and how we do things, that’s a big win for our field.
I came to theater after teaching high school for many years. Once I got in the door, I felt I had a lot of catching up to do. This meant sitting in on production meetings; watching sets go in, costumes added, lights focused; talking to designers; watching rehearsals, being on book, helping in whatever way I could; befriending actors, directors, dramaturgs and visiting playwrights – asking a lot of questions; attending countless preview performances then listening to notes; being a reader at auditions; going to see shows at other theaters; and reading a lot of plays. Then one day, many years into being an arts administrator, it struck me that I really wanted to be part of the art. Telling stories seemed to be the perfect point of entry.
I’m a pretty serious Steelers fan.
♦ A $25 dollar donation will get you a FORUM pass that covers all of the readings.
♦ A $250 donation will get you a rehearsal pass that allows access to all reading rehearsals.
♦ Reservations can be made online at or call (973) 514-1787 X10
Click here to reserve your seat to see MR. WHEELER'S.
You can also find additional information on our website about the entire FORUM reading series.