Theatre Night: February 5, 2015 – Long Live the Little Knife

On Thursday, February 5, 2015 the BABC hosted Theatre Night with member company Inis Nua, The Off-Broad Street Theatre at the First Baptist Church on Sansom Street in Philadelphia. The house was full, barely an empty seat in the 80 person theater, for the final preview of the US premier of the Scottish show, Long Live the Little Knife. Howard Silverstone, BABC Board President welcomed attendees and introduced Tom Reing, Founder and Artistic Director of Inis Nua Theatre.

Translated from the Irish language, Inis Nua means “New Island.” The theater company’s mission is to produce contemporary, provocative plays from England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales which reflect those cultures’ new identities in today’s world. The organization seeks to cultivate and produce contemporary, provocative work from American playwrights who deal with the Anglo, Scottish, Irish and Welsh-American experiences. Inis Nua opened in 2004, and has most recently received numerous “Outstanding” awards for: Overall Production of a Musical; Direction of a Musical; Leading Actress in a Musical, and Music Direction; as well as the June and Steve Wolfson Award for an “Evolving Theatre Company” given at 2014 Barrymore Awards for Excellence in Theater.

Beginning with one play per year, Tom and his theater company worked up to full seasons which gained and continue to gain national and international attention. Tom’s favorite part of the role is to travel and create and sustain those connections, identifying talented playwrights from here and across the Atlantic. Tom takes great pride in selecting the right show to produce. He provides talented, still rather unknown playwrights who show a lot of potential the opportunity to showcase their artistry. Inis Nua’s productions provide intrigue at every turn.
More than 25 people joined the BABC for dinner and drinks catered by the Victoria Freehouse before the show began. We met Long Live the Little Knife writer, David Leddy, and spoke with him before and after the performance.

Long Live the Little Knife is a tale of trickery and double-cross where a husband and wife set out to become the world’s greatest art forgers. The theater, including audience seats are draped in paint splattered canvas. The stage set encompasses the entire auditorium and audience members feel at times, nearly too close to the action. The play quickly leads you through the adventures of two married con artists Liz (Corinna Burns) and Jim (Tim Dugan) who begin by selling knock-off hand bags and move on to forge famous paintings. Several other felonious themes permeate the fast paced dialogue. The show abruptly ends leaving audiences truly shocked.
Following the production BABC members met and toasted the actors, the writer and producer. This post show party provided our group with the unique opportunity to discuss the genesis of the polemic topics presented. Long Live the Little Knife succeeds in breaking down the barriers often erected to protect the mainstream from deep seeded, underworld issues.

Long Live the Little Knife runs through February 22, 2015 at The Inis Nua Theatre at Off-Broad Street Theater, 1636 Sansom Street. Tickets $25-30. For information contact Inis Nua: 215-454-9776 or

Click here to view pictures from the event.

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