March 16, 2022–Were you one of those people who pledged to use the lockdown to create your magnum opus?
David Remschel actually did it. But then, the published playwright/middle school teacher is addicted to writing.
“The whole idea came about at the very beginning of the lockdown,” said the Fredericksburg High School and McMurry University graduate. “The school was shut down just after spring break, and it was quite miserable for me. So I was looking for a purpose. This just kind of clicked and it became the piece I was working on.”
Within two weeks Remschel had finished his draft of They Play A Rigged Game and soon had it ready for read-through. The play is now in production with its world premier set for March 18 at the Point Theater in Ingram.
For this show, as he did with a prior work No Room For A Picture On The Blank Wall, Remschel has tapped into his experience working at an Alzheimer’s clinic for his Servant Leadership class. He emphasizes this is not a sequel, but more of a companion piece that explores the effect dementia has on both the individual experiencing the symptoms, as well as family, friends, and caregivers.
“I always felt like I wasn’t done with the subject,” he said. “This one isn’t nearly the heartbreaking piece that No Room was–this is more about friendship.”
The play revolves around a woman who was a very successful CEO of her own company and is now experiencing the beginning stages of dementia. She sees herself becoming an inconvenience and thinks everybody sees her in the same way.
“But at the very end of the play, you have these two people from different walks of life that are thrust together in the most unlikely of circumstances. They start their friendship, with the uncertainty of it all, but are still willing to go through it together. And I think that’s what’s powerful, is that there are some people you’re willing to go through anything with.”
The show features Ann Reynolds, John Ruth, Wright Roussel, and Crystn Hendrickson.
“You have these several residents of assisted living facilities searching for a purpose. Eventually they find it through the friendship. And though they’re very different people, they find, through necessity, that they need each other.”
One wonders how a person can create award-winning plays (No Room won the Texas Education Theater Association Playfest Award and is published by Dramatic Publishing) while raising a family and teaching middle schoolers. For Remschel, there is no mystery–he is always ready to write.
“I’ll be carrying my little red laptop around with me constantly,” he admitted. “If I’m going to the grocery store waiting for pickup, I’ll have my laptop there. And something will just strike, whether it’s a piece of music, whether it’s a film that I’m thinking of, or it may be completely unrelated, but it’ll just hit me and, boom, I’ll start writing.”
Along with entertaining the audience, Remschel wants They Play A Rigged Game to deliver another message in this time of uncertainty.
“This show is for those people that work in and live in these facilities,” he said. “It’s hard putting up with what these people are going through, and building these connections. This was just my way of saying, thank you.”
The World Premier of They Play A Rigged Game is on Friday, March 18, 7:30pm in the Elizabeth Huth-Coates Indoor Theatre at The Point Theater in Ingram. It runs weekends through April 3, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30, and 2:30 Sunday matinees.
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Wright Roussel, Ann Reynolds, and John Ruth lead the audience through a journey of unexpected friendship in David Remschel’s world premier of They Play A Rigged Game.