“Ben Butler” Commands the Stage at Curtain Call Theatre January 24th to February 8th

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“Ben Butler” by Richard Strand is making its Capital Region premiere at Curtain Call Theatre in Latham opening this Friday 1/24 and playing weekends through 2/8. This enormously popular comedy tells the true story of Major General Ben Butler who was chosen in the early weeks of the Civil War, as a friend of Lincoln’s, to command Fort Monroe in recently seceded Virginia. Soon after taking command three runaway slaves show up in the fort seeking sanctuary. Will Butler turn them over to the Confederacy as required by the Fugitive Slave Act or can he find another way…which just might alter the course of the war?

(l-r) Michael A. Lake, James Wild, Chris Foster
Photo by Michael P. Farrell

The New York Times called the debut in 2014 “ part comedy, part historical drama and part biography, often all at once…Just call it splendid…The beauty of the script…is how it approaches thorny topics. In short, it’s a hoot. Rather than dry exposition or long-winded discussions, these men use wordplay that is by turns sarcastic, droll and witty…[Strand’s] comic voice is…clever without being glib, meaningful without being pretentious. It’s a funny and impressive mixture.” 

The Curtain Call Theatre production, produced by Carol Max is directed by Patrick White and features Chris Foster, Michael Lake, Dennis Skiba & James Wild. The set is by William Fritz, lighting design by Lily Fosner, costumes by Beth Ruman, sound design by Alex Dietz-Kest, props by Lynne Skaskiw and stage management by Justine Pascual. There is a Preview 1/23 at 7:30 and the play opens 1/24 at 8 pm running Thursdays through Sunday with one Saturday matinee on 2/1. Tickets are $25. and can be purchased at their website www.curtaincalltheatre.com or by calling (518) 877-7529.

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