Lend Me a Tenor
 by Ken Ludwig
 Huron Playhouse, Huron, Ohio
 July 1998

In this play, the head of the Cleveland Grand Opera Company, Saunders, and his assistant Max, are anxiously awaiting the arrival of their guest artist, the great tenor Tito Morelli, who has a reputation as a drunk and womanizer. Max shoulders the burden of caring for Tito until the night's performance of Verdi's Otello. Unfortunately this includes accidentally giving him too many sleeping pills and too much wine. Mistakenly interpreting Tito's unconsciousness as suicide, Saunders forces Max to don Tito's duplicate Otello costume and sing the part for him so they don't have to refund the ticket money. When Tito wakes up, gets into his costume and runs to the theatre, chaos ensues, etc.

This kind of play, with its typical farce elements such as mistaken identity, seduction, coordinated entrances and exits, and slapstick technique, is a challenge for actors and director, since timing must be precise while creating the illusion of chaos.

This was a revival of the 1992 production, which I had previously directed at the Huron Playhouse. It was a great honor to be chosen to direct the show again as part of the Playhouse's 50th anniversary season, which had a "greatest hits of the Playhouse" theme.

Review from the 1998 production
Review from the 1992 production

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Copyright 2003 by Ken McCoy.