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The Fizz-Easy Speakeasy: Corn Stock

Corn Stock Theatre’s Digital Play Series is excited to present another original work, The Fizz-Easy Speakeasy, written by Patrick Bell, which will stream on-demand through OnTheStage in two parts. Part One will stream Friday, April 23rd through Sunday, April 25th and Part Two will stream Friday, April 30th through Sunday, May 2nd. Tickets are $10.00 for an Individual Ticket and $15.00 for a Family Ticket. To purchase your tickets today for both parts, visit http://www.cornstocktickets.com.

The Fizz-Easy Speakeasy is a radio show that is set in Las Vegas, Nevada, in the early 20th century. We are introduced to Veronica Veloria, a lounge singer, who tells the story of the son of a crime boss, Buford Billiard, and the mysterious and exclusive Fizz-Easy Speakeasy! Whether you are a fan of drama, passion, mystery, revenge, and even romance, this show has it all!

When we asked director and playwright, Patrick Bell, how inspiration struck, he said “The original idea for the script came from an imaginary friend who has bothered me for several years, as well as my love for different stories like Vampire the Masquerade Bloodlines, the mafiosos from The Simpsons, the works of Terrence Zdunich, Rocky Horror, etc. I originally wrote this script because I wanted to start writing something since everything else I’d written had been by hand. I completed it and thought I would send it to a new friend for her opinion, but then she immediately rallied other people in Canton to help bring the people to life, and soon everything started happening before I could even know it! From the end of 2019 to March 2020, we were going to put on the show until everything shut down literally one week before opening night. We tried to salvage the project, but it just wasn’t possible given the circumstances. Eventually, I got on a writing streak because I had nothing else to do, and I had a stockpile of scripts and wanted to see what I could do with them. I sent three scripts to the Digital Play Series Taskforce for different show opportunities when they were taking play submissions for their Digital Play Series. I was initially reluctant to pursue this project, but I really wanted to make it into something great because it was one of the few scripts my grandfather read before his death last September, and I really wanted to honor his memory; he also inspired my writing in the first place.”

With about a dozen performances under their belt, Corn Stock Theatre has continued to pivot their shows to a digital streaming format to allow patrons of all ages to enjoy theatre from the safety and comfort of their homes and for people outside the Peoria-area to tune in or to audition and be part of these productions. Amy Rajsky, a Peoria native but now a Chicago-based actress, has been able to participate in a few of Corn Stock’s digital plays, including The Fizz-Easy Speakeasy as Veronica Veloria. Rajsky says “I’m so happy to have the opportunity to continue doing theatre in some form during this pandemic, and I especially appreciate having the opportunity to work with Corn Stock Theatre again, through the use of technology, after I moved out of town. (It will always be my “hometown theatre!”) Rehearsing remotely has gone pretty smoothly, and I’m so thankful for my director and cast for running with this process and welcoming me into the cast. What’s made this experience especially unique is that our director was also the playwright, so any script changes could easily be made on the fly without concern, which was freeing in a way, to have that flexibility.”

With community theatre focusing on community and allowing actors and technicians a chance to safely produce art during this time, Bell says “I could never have brought this forward alone–my brother Cosmo did the artwork; Missi Thomas encouraged me to go as far with it as I possibly could; Debi Land, Kenny Peak, Marlana White, Blaine Micu, James and Carmen Pomeroy, Baylor Carper, Dylan Cowden, my mother and father, and so many others in Canton who went on this ride with me through next year; and then with everyone at Corn Stock, it’s finally coming together. I owe everything to my family, my friends and support team in Canton, and the cast and crew here at Corn Stock for helping bring this to life.”

The cast includes Jerrod Barth, Barry Grimes, Sam Hipp, Erika Johnston-Poch, Rachel McCrea, Amy Rajsky, and Adam Vestal.

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