Gahanna Lincoln High School alumnus Alex Kip will star on the Short North Stage in The Little Dog Laughed at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9, and continuing every Friday and Saturday night through Thanksgiving weekend.
The Little Dog Laughed is Douglas Carter Beane's comedy about a rapacious Hollywood agent and a closeted actor. The play was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Play in 2007 and is an adult and funny view of the search for happiness with a Hollywood angle, producer Rick Gore said.
"Alex says this is a radically different type of role for him," Gore said. "He plays a sexually ambivalent New York City hustler who develops a relationship with a closeted movie star, much to the dismay of the star's agent and his girlfriend.
"It's all about Hollywood and is very funny, but also quite poignant," Gore said.
Kip said it's great to be back in Columbus from New York to work on a challenging and funny show like The Little Dog Laughed.
"I've never played a character like this, and it's been an amazing process," he said. "Short North Stage is an exciting opportunity for professional actors who, up until now, didn't have many opportunities in the Columbus theater community."
The Short North Stage is a new professional theater company at the historic Garden Theater that began in late 2010, when a group dedicated to bringing professional theater and performing arts, emphasizing musicals, brought it to the Short North, Gore said.
"We signed a long-term lease on the historic Garden Theater the summer of 2011 and opened our first musical last fall, Stephen Sondheim's Follies, to a sold-out run and great reviews," he said. "We have since performed a series of musicals and cabaret performances, as well as two comedies. We just closed a very successful run of the musical, Cabaret."
Gore said the Short North Stage aims to reinvent historic musicals and present works with an edge.
"We also foster the growth of local cabaret performers in their one-person acts in our second stage, our intimate Green Room," he said. "Last winter, we won a citation from the Central Drama Critics Circle for our work and our efforts at helping revitalize the upper Short North with our work on bringing the old Garden back to life."
The group also won the Short North Alliance's award for best business expansion.
Short North Stage will become the center for the Short North Pole, a communitywide holiday festival in December.
The Little Dog Laughed will be performed at The Green Room of the Short North Stage, 1187 N. High St. A preview will be held at 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8.
Tickets cost $23. For more information, call 614-725-4042 or visit shortnorthstage.org.