Music/Lyrics by Gail Sparlin, Book by Gail Sparlin and Cecelia Gray
“Echoes of Joni Mitchell, Tom Waits, J.D. Souther, and Linda Ronstadt in these heartrending and defiant songs.” Patrick White on Pokegama Hotel
This project was made possible in part through a Community Arts Grant, a program funded by The Arts Center of the Capital Region through the New York State Council on the Arts.
Press: Daily Gazette, Times Union
- Producer-Gail Sparlin
- Director- Leslie Eliashuk
- Music Director- Dennis McCafferty
- Editor, Stage Manager- Cecelia Gray
- Set Design/Photography-Jim Miller
- Score Editor- Daniel Hoke
- Sound Design-Barry Streifert
- Lighting Design-Matt Dembling
- Musicians-Christian Gunn, Frank Novko, Michael Vincent
Synopsis: It is early March on the upper Mississippi River, the year is 1973. The snow is reluctant in its retreat and the eyes of the residents have gone beyond the annual anticipation of spring and into an intense longing for green. Local gathering places are filled with speculations about the first thaw, gardening plans, and the last days of Vietnam. These are the people of the Pokegama Hotel, a municipal bar in the small town of Grand Rapids, Minnesota, and this is an afternoon of their thoughts, desires, heartaches, smart banters, and conversations with each other and Fay, the bartender and central character. Pokegama Hotel is about the people of all towns, and the quest for the extraordinary in the ordinary. The constant vigil for the dozens of fleeting daily joys and small victories we need as fuel for our internal fires and immunities. This is the restless moment, the lifetime in a glance, the short sentence that speaks volumes, the small gesture that opens the heart. This is Pokegama Hotel.
“Try to capture your life like a photograph, save it someplace safe and make it last…”