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NKU Grads Return from New York City to Present New Show

Northern Kentucky University 2012 BFA Acting grads Bradley Evans and Laura Madden are coming home from new lives in New York for Cincinnati Fringe with a new work and a new company and performances of Down Among the Vultures from May 30-June 6. 

Vultures is one of 40-plus shows – international, national, regional and local - in 10 venues in the 12-day festival running May 26-June 6. For a Cincinnati Fringe schedule visit www.cincyfringe.com. (Check it out, quick, buzz shows sell out fast.)

Down Among the Vultures produced by Green Hills Theatre Collective is a “poetic, dark comedy about desperation, decay, and the assassination of an endangered species,” Evans says. 

Synopsis: After an accidental cat litter mogul in a rust belt town kills himself, his fortune is willed to his pet condor, leaving his family to drift.

Vultures was also accepted into Washington, D.C.’s Capitol Fringe – but they turned down the opportunity “right before we found out about Cincy, because we were hoping and praying that we could bring this piece "back home" to share."

“Cincinnati's Fringe is one of the strongest in the country and Down Among the Vultures is set in a fictional, run-down town in Ohio and we thought the audiences there would be able to connect with the themes and ideas of the show more so than any other cities.”

In New York, Evans and Madden have been auditioning “and beating the pavement for a while and we were both working together at a German biergarten in Hell's Kitchen,” Evans continues. “While we were working together, we began toying with the idea of building our own theatre company to create work that would help keep us learning and exploring the type of theatre we wanted to create.”

Their first production was in March 2014.

While Evans and Madden are living in New York, the name of their company celebrates the green grass of Kentucky and Cincinnati as “The City of Seven Hills”.

Green Hills Theatre Collective, “Came from our roots,” Evans says emphatically. And from a passion to be more than “just a troupe or company, but a true collaborative group that focused on helping new artists to the city sharpen their tools and explore their strengths through new and established works.”

Evans and Madden were going to get back to auditioning after their first production, but biergarten co-worker Brandon DiSabatino began bringing them “bits and pieces of some scenes he was writing.”

“His background is in poetry, but there was something so fresh and real about the script he was bringing to us. We pushed him to bring us a full-length script that we could work on. In fall of last year, we cast a staged reading and talk-back after for his first draft of the script to get a reaction from an audience and see what was working and what wasn't.”

The script has been cut from two and one-half hours to 70 minutes. “We're now in the process of finishing rehearsals for the show and getting ready to hit the road at the end of the month for Fringe.”

A little more catch-up: Madden has been auditioning and taking classes with the T. Schreiber studio and working on some film projects. Evans has been auditioning, volunteering with a local animal shelter “in hopes that I can begin to start working full time within a shelter or begin learning to train service dogs.

“All this while working full time at our new bartending jobs and running the company, we're busy nonstop!”

Down Among the Vultures, May 30-June 6. Cincinnati Fringe, 17 E. Court St., Downtown Cincinnati. Tickets $15. 513-300-5669 and www.cincyfringe.com.

Written by Jackie Demaline, RCN Arts

Photo provided

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