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Breeders Theater returns with ‘Blood Pudding’

DES MOINES – South King County’s premier professional theater company returns this month with a new show, Blood Pudding.
The show runs Oct. 25-26 and Nov. 1-2 at 7 p.m., and Oct. 27 and Nov. 3 at 2 p.m.
After a two-year break following the closure of BT’s old home at E.B. Foote Winery in Burien, the company returns with a new show about business and vampires.
“The city of Des Moines approached us earlier this year about doing a show at the Beach Park Auditorium,” says founder and playwright T.M. Sell.
“I was finishing up another project, so it seemed like a good opportunity to get back to work,” says Sell.
Company members had suggested something satirical on vampires, so Sell set to work on a new script last spring.
The result is Blood Pudding, which pokes fun at both the business world and at the obsession in vampires in current popular culture.
“I’ve never understood the whole vampire thing, anyway,” Sell said. “There’s something romantic about someone who can bite you and kill you?”
As it turns out, the character of Dracula is likely based on a real person, who wasn’t a vampire.
“But he was an interesting guy, nonetheless,” Sell says.
“You don’t have to know anything about either to appreciate the
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show,” says Sell.
Blood Pudding will be directed by BT veteran J Howard Boyd, and features the acting talents of Adrienne Grieco, Steve Coffey, Martin J. Mackenzie, Amber Rack, Erica McAdams-Roth, Danny Vogt, Lauren Scoville, Matt Johnson, Steven Davis, Amanda Rae, and Kate Moyer.
“We’ll always miss being at the winery,” Sell says, “but we’re excited to begin this new adventure at the Beach Park Auditorium.”
The auditorium is at 22030 Cliff Ave. S., at the northern end of the Beach Park, just past the Des Moines Marina.
“It has parking; it has a stage; and it has heat,” says Sell.
“Although it was sad when the winery closed, it still didn’t feel like we were quite done,” Sell says. “I love working with our company, and I love seeing audiences enjoy our work.”
Tickets are available through, and via the city of Des Moines the Des Moines Field House Recreation Office, M-F, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. 1000 S. 220th St., and via credit card by by phone: M-F, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. 206-870-6527, and at the door.

Featured performer: Marty Mackenzie

Marty Mackenzie returns to BT as yet another somewhat crazy character.
Mackenzie has been acting for more than 40 years, “not counting high school and college.”
Mackenzie studied at St. Martin’s College in Lacey, and now works as a fix-it-all handyman in his own business.
But, he says, his favorite moments remain on the water, where he’s an avid fisherman.
“I know this is not theatrical, but I think my favorite moments are anytime I can spend on my boat: fishing, crabbing, cruising Puget Sound, etc. Every time I go out, it’s like a mini vacation for me,” he says. “It rejuvenates my spirit, and ‘I feel like I’m riding a fine white horse ….’”
Nonetheless, he says he also enjoys his time on stage, including multiple shows with BT.
“I have been blessed with so many great roles in Breeders Theater plays: Ike in Snowbound, Raven T. Crowe in Out of the Nest, Mike in Crazy/Naked, Harold the Herald in Rescues, Inc., Judge Puncheon Judy in Grape Expectations, to name a few.
“But I think Vector in Soap Bubble would have to be my favorite as that was my first. Or maybe it’s this role, N. Ron Hubbert, because I’m still alive.”
Good roles and good times keep Mackenzie coming back.
“I’ve been working with Breeders Theater for about 10 years now, and I have made many very good friends here,” he says.
“This is like a family to me. I get to work with people I love, and trust, and who are tremendously gifted and talented,” Mackenzie says. “Working with these people make the hard work of theater tons o’ fun.
“And T.M.’s plays always make me laugh. I like to laugh, especially with this group of people.”
Mackenzie says he tries to make his characters seem real to the audience.
“I try to make my character as believable as possible,” he says.
“I feel I do not want to be seen as ‘acting’ the role. I need to be seen as ‘being’ the role.
“I have to be honest, and genuine, and truthful to the person that I am playing,” Mackenzie says.
“ In order to do this I like to memorize my lines, get off-book, as soon as possible. Then I can take possession of my role.”
That allows him to become the character.
“By this I mean that the words I am saying are no longer the playwright’s words, but mine. The movements that I am making are no longer the director’s blocking and notes that I have been given, but they are mine.
“And I don’t mean that they are Marty’s, I mean that they are my character’s, and that all the words and movements are coming from my character and define my character.
“Thus, I have taken possession of my role,” he says.
“Or maybe it’s that I want to get the audience to clap when I come out for curtain call. Or throw coins. That would be good, too.”

What’s new?

We’re now able to take credit cards, either through the city of Des Moines or through
Either way, our tickets remain at $20. From this, we cover our expenses, pay the city for the facility and pay the actors. BT is a private business, so we don’t get or seek public donations.
As we are no longer at the winery, wine tasting is no longer included in the ticket price. Wine will be available for sale at most shows (we’re still working out the details with the city). Proceeds from wine sales go to the city to help with the ongoing restoration of the Beach Park complex.
All performances will be festival seating.
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