Planted or The Nutt House - Staged Reading - The Process

By: Casey McDermott

What began as a 38-page comedy banged out over the course of a few days in a Hollywood apartment soon became a real theatrical “first.” After being selected winner of the Stay Thirsty Playwright Contest, Todd McCullough and his submission “Planted” were flown to the Windy City for a workshop hosted by Thirsty and Chicago’s Laboratory Theatre Project. The mission of the Lab, a local nonprofit, is to produce new and groundbreaking work in an extremely intimate setting. So, in signature multi-media fashion, we sent videographer Ruben Cantu and the ThirstyCam along to document the entire process.

The Lab recruited a group of game actors who volunteered their time in exchange for the unique opportunity to work with Todd on his original script. Four days later, “Planted” became “The Nutt House,” a full-length, full-fledged farce replete with empty houses, mistaken identity, a psycho killer and many, many doors. We laughed. A lot. So much that we almost cried. The cast jumped to ten characters; broken cookies and dirty underwear were flying left and right. This month we take you behind the scenes to watch this motley crew take the play from page to stage. Check us out in November for the culmination of this series, featuring new commentary from Todd and highlights from our reading at the Prop Theatre.

What are you waiting for? Get Planted.





(the staged reading)

Written by Todd McCullough
Directed by John David Hall

Presented by Stay Thirsty Media, Inc. & The Laboratory Theatre Project
as part of the Prop Theatre 2007/National New Play Festival

Produced by LTP members Kent Brown, Kevin Carroll & Casey McDermott
Filmed by Ruben Cantu for Stay Thirsty Media, Inc.


Crackerjack – Don Jenkins
Nathan Nutt – Kent Brown
Ruth – Kate Bergeron
Philbert Nutt – Chip Davis
Sandy – Leah Urzendowski
Officer Mudgett – Chris Amos
Dad – John Tomlinson
Phyllis Weinberg – Kathryn Kerosi
Edgar Weinberg – John Keebler
Randy – Cody Wass
Stage direction read by Laura Rook


September 2007: Planted or The Nutt House - from rehearsal to performance

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