Neurotic dreamers, perverse philosophers, booze-ridden angels and sometime fools, mourners of forgotten history, hypochondriac, misogynist and addict bicker, shed their tales and confess their fantasies; all which converge to instruct a younger man on a journey to adulthood.
Funny, often vulgar, perhaps obscene and melancholy, this is David Mamet’s first play where eight men bound by fate and perhaps envy of a kid from a college near Boston working only for this summer, all aboard the T. Harrison, the Lakeboat.
Lakeboat is the first play where I was part the of workshop process of bringing a new play to the stage led by David at Marlboro College in Vermont where he was subbed for the original instructor on Sabbatical. This was 1970 and the department was run as a rep company in those days. Working with him was a defining influence in my personal approach to being an actor and still is.
As to why I am producing Lakeboat, the answer is very simple. I have always had a personal connection to Lakeboat because of the opportunity to be part of a work in progress and the development of a personal vision. I remember David sharing with us his other early works like The Duck Variations. I had to do this play because I was there when his definitive style was nurtured.
Imperial Theatre Live as a brand is producing works written before 1970 and to present them in a manner breaking down the more formal and or standard approach to casting and characterization with respect to gender, age and ethnicity. The cast is multi-racial and gender fluid; Lakeboat was written for eight males and my production has three women, performing their roles without change of gender.
In 1970, Lakeboat was considered controversial for its raw language and misogynistic dialogue. Having women perform in this play, I feel, keeps open the door to the discussion of gender equality, identity and orientation.
Raoul Anderson, a native of Washington, DC, works on camera and in live theatre – his first love. Local productions: “The Bad Job” for Infinity9 Films; “Only Clarke Syndrome” and “Item 35” for Howard University Films. Other films are “The Residency” and as ‘Joe’ in “Margaret”, the comedy-drama short and winner of three jury awards on the festival circuit, domestic and abroad:
Other associations for television and features: “Evil Kin”,” Deadly Affairs”, “House of Cards”, “VEEP”, “Mercy Street”, and “Loving”.
He has worked in live theatre during his college years in Marlboro, Vermont and performed with The Marlboro Theatre Company , “The Three-Penny Opera”, A Funny Happened on the Way to the Forum” (Hero) and summer theatre in Keene, New Hampshire in Sam Shepherd’s “Cowboys 2” and “The Apple Tree” (Snake). While at Marlboro College, he performed in diverse theatre such as “The Country Wife”, “The Duchess of Malfi”, “The Plough and the Stars” even Greek Tragedy, “Orestes” (Pylades). While at Marlboro, he met David Mamet and performed in the workshop presentation of “Lakeboat”. Other favorite roles in “Bad Seed” (Leroy), “The Pirates of Penzance” (Major General) and “North Capital-The Musical” (Willie Brown). This production of “Lakeboat” is his third association with D.C. Capital Fringe – “The Mutualistic Melody” (2014), “Waiting for Godot” (Vladimir) and his first as director.