Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Bloomington Playwrights Project Offering Fans the Chance to Stream 'The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers'

As the global COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic continuing to keep everyone at home, organizations big and small, national and local are struggling to raise funds to survive the economic downtown.


Since the lockdown, however, theater goers have turned to streaming, with many theaters offering the chance for fans to stream a wealth of shot-from-the-stage plays and musicals. And while some of these productions come from big-budget, high-profile producers, such as London’s National Theatre and Canada’s Stratford Festival, smaller theaters have also gotten into the act, releasing pre-lockdown production tapes.

One such theater is the Bloomington Playwrights Project (BPP) in Bloomington, Indiana, a 40-plus-year-old new-play company who has launched BPPFLIX, a new initiative which has opened up its vault to release 25 hit plays from the past decade for the low, low price of “any donation”!

Amongst the many titles available to stream is The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers, the hit biographical one-man play by Nickelodeon legend and Indiana native Marc Summers (Double Dare)!

During a remarkable career in show business, Marc Summers has hosted, or co-hosted, over 25 television series, having appeared on everything from ABC to Nickelodeon, CBS to Food Network, and Lifetime to FOX. During a multi-faceted career, Summers concurrently became a pop-culture icon, most notably tied into his longtime gig as the host of the hugely popular Nickelodeon TV series Double Dare. He also served as the host of Food Network’s long-running Unwrapped. In addition, Summers established himself as a producer of popular and successful reality TV series, as well as a businessman, author of a self-help book, and a stand-up comic. He was also the producer of two additional, long-running Food Network shows, Dinner: Impossible and Restaurant: Impossible.

Debuting in 2016 as Marc Summers' first-ever one-man show, in The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers, Summers looks back on his life and the “slimes” of his career, and features an informative look at the nature of celebrity. Along the way, Summers reveals how he survived cancer, a near-fatal car crash, and a crippling case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). The play was co-written by Tony Award nominee Alex Brightman, and also features audience participation in game-show segments.

In 2012, Marc Summers decided to “tip his toes back into the waters” of acting in live theatre, and performed for a short time in the role of “Vince Fontaine” in a Long Beach Island (NJ) production of Grease. During the show’s run, Marc became good friends with fellow co-star Drew Gasparini, who in turn introduced him to Alex Brightman (Broadway's School of Rock: The Musical).

The three men became close friends, and for the next two years, Gasparini and Brightman would meet with Marc Summers for countless meals, during which time they would tape record his reminiscences from throughout his life. Marc revealed to them both the funny, offbeat and fortuitous circumstances behind his successful TV career, as well as many deeply personal issues which he’s had to overcome during the past several years.

Following the success of Gasparini/Brightman’s co-written play Make Me Bad, which had been performed in Bloomington, IN (which is also available to stream), Producing Artistic Director Chad Rabinovitz learned that the two men were working with Marc Summers. Rabinovitz bought the proposed new collaborative play from Summers/Gasparini/Brightman sight unseen. Thus, The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers was conceived. The new play was first presented on April Fools Day - April 1, 2016 - in Bloomington, IN, at the Bloomington Playwrights Project.

Following the success of The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers, the play was turned into the feature-length documentary directed by Mathew Klickstein titled On Your Marc in 2017.

To watch The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers, Make Me Bad and 23 other hit shows, simply visit BPPFLIX at https://www.newplays.org/bppflix-landing/ and make a one-time donation of any amount by clicking the donate button!

Please keep in mind that this is a fundraiser for BPP – they've lost a significant sum of income from having to cancel/postpone shows and face an uncertain future ahead of them. Your donation will help the project continue to support their artists and staff, handle the notable loss of income, and weather the storm so that they can be prepared to perform for theater goers LIVE when it is safe to do so. Please donate what you can.

After PayPal notifies the BPP that you’ve made a donation by clicking on the DONATE button, the theater will email you a password (within 24hrs). Click on the link on the BPPFLIX website, enter that password, and you’ll have UNLIMITED access to 25 plays and musicals!

For more information about the Bloomington Playwrights Project and BPPFLIX, visit https://www.newplays.org/bppflix-landing.

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Original source: Indianapolis Monthly.
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