Monday, June 21, 2010

Planet Connections Interview - Mark William Butler of Cat Gets Credit Card!

By Byrne Harrison

Name: Mark William Butler
Play: Cat Gets Credit Card!
Relationship to production: Book, Music & Lyrics.

How did you first get involved in theatre?

In fifth grade I played a ham actor who falls asleep on a couch and gets his sandwich stolen - How now, brown cow!. Later on, I went to film school with the idea of becoming the New Jersey Irish-American version of Woody Allen. But then I enrolled in a playwriting workshop, started producing my own stuff, and fell in love with the stage.

Who are your biggest influences?

Screwball comedies, The Beatles, Stephen Sondheim, Frank Capra, Candide, Kander & Ebb, The Marx Brothers, Louis Jordan, Leiber & Stoller, early SNL, SCTV, and of course Woody.

What is your show about?

It's about a cat who gets a credit card, magically transforms into a "person", gets a reality show, and becomes a pop superstar.

What inspired you to write/direct/perform in it (depending on who is answering the question)? A true story I saw on the web.

What made you want to perform in an eco-friendly theatre festival like Planet Connections?

The festival is a great idea, and the people who run it are sincere, passionate, and a whole lot of fun!

Planet Connections is fairly unique in that a portion of the box office for each show is donated to a charity. What charity have you chosen and why?

CityMeals On Wheels. I like the idea of helping out seniors who want to continue to live idependently, in their own apartments, calling their own shots. This program helps them to do that.

What's next for you after Planet Connections?

I'll try to make "Cat" a worldwide sensation! Then hopefully write a brand new musical about working in an office, and maybe a Christmas show.

And finally, if you could go back in time and meet yourself as a kid, what advice would you give your younger self?

It's all right to be insecure. Just find that person within and don't let him out of your sight!

Cat Gets Credit Card!
Book, Music & Lyrics by Mark William Butler
Directed by Richard P. Butler

Running time: 90 minutes, no intermission

Mon 6/21 @ 2pm
Venue: The Robert Moss Theater, 440 Lafayette Street, 3rd floor

Wed 6/23 @ 7pm
Venue: The White Box Theater, 440 Lafayette Street, 3rd floor

Fri 6/25 @ 7pm
Venue: The White Box Theater, 440 Lafayette Street, 3rd floor

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