Theatre of Dare kicks off 33rd season with ‘Toil and Trouble’

Published 1:21 pm Monday, September 18, 2023

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A twisted take on a Shakespeare classic is how Theatre of Dare is kicking off a brand new season on a brand new stage.

Toil and Trouble is a darkly comic modern retelling of Macbeth written by playwright Lauren Gunderson, who also wrote last season’s hit Exit, Pursued By A Bear. And you can expect the same type of Shakespearian shenanigans this time around.

“I love the way this play moves a classic tale into the 21st century,” said director Kim Plyler. “You’ve got most of the well-known plot points here, surrounded by a big dose of modern-day humor and angst. Whether or not you know Macbeth, you’ll love Toil and Trouble.

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The play begins with three underemployed millennials doing their best to beat the recession, which involves hatching a plan to take over a small South American island. But when Matt (Emmett Temple) gets a fortune cookie predicting great power, he plots with Beth (Adara Huls) to rid themselves of Adam (James Miller). Of course, not everything goes as planned, with hilarious results.

Toil and Trouble is part of Theatre of Dare’s “Off ToDway” series, in which the community theater leaves the friendly confines of its Kitty Hawk home stage to spread some live theater love around other communities of the Outer Banks. This production will take the stage at the Barn at Keeper’s Galley in Nags Head.

“We made so many great partnerships in the years that we were homeless,” said Theatre of Dare board president Stuart Parks II. “We want to keep those partnerships alive and make new ones, bringing local, live community theater to audiences all across the region.”

Toil and Trouble is the first of seven productions in TOD’s 33rd season. Main stage productions will include The Bad Seed in October, The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical in December, August, Osage County in February, The Drowsy Chaperone in March, and Four Old Broads in April. Season tickets for those productions are on sale on the Theatre of Dare website through September 28.

Another Off ToDway production, Tiny Beautiful Things, will perform at Dare Arts in Manteo in January.

“We couldn’t be more excited for the upcoming season,” said Theatre of Dare business manager Kelsey Thompson. “A thriller, a couple dramas, two musicals and a lot of comedy. There’s something for everyone, and we’re looking forward to entertaining our audiences all season long!”

And it all begins with a little Toil and Trouble Sept. 22.

Toil and Trouble runs Sept. 22, 23, 29 and 30 at 7:30 p.m., with matinees on Sept. 24 and Oct.1 at 2 p.m. in the Barn at Keeper’s Galley (4411 S. Croatan Highway, Nags Head). Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students and are available at The play contains adult content and language, so it’s not appropriate for young children, noted the Theatre of Dare announcement.