River Ditty

An invited reading of a new play

RiverDittyFINALWritten by: Matthew Keuter
Directed by: Nathaniel Shaw

Monday, June 24, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
in the Fulton’s fourth floor Studio Theatre

Presented by The Active Theater in cooperation with the Fulton Theatre

Featuring Fulton favorites: Andy Kindig, Abby Mueller, Katie Sina and Chet Williamson


Spanning the 40 years between 1890 and 1930, River Ditty tells the tale of seven souls linked by blood, love, violence, poverty and a mighty river. In 1910 Arlo and Sunshine, posing as brother and sister, jump a midnight boxcar fleeing Mr. Dye who owns the brothel where Arlo plays the piano and Sunshine runs the girls. In an attempt to appease the jealous and volatile Mr. Dye, they leave behind all worldly possession and declare themselves born anew. Hope quickly turns to despair when the feisty Sunshine falls sick leaving the gentle Arlo to defend her from the two rail riders who jumped the same boxcar – a violent father/son team of railroad thieves. Delirious with fever, Sunshine pulls a knife on the two thieves, her courage winning the heart of young Harlan – a mountain of a man and the thieving son – who in turn defends her honor from his vicious father. That’s where River Ditty begins. Introduce the hard-nosed Sheriff, his son who falls in love with our piano player, a steamer trunk of Mr. Dye’s gold, a bloody clawhammer, a shotgun, and Lilly Fair the best earning of Mr. Dye’s girls… and it takes 40 years to sort out.

Tickets are free, but reservations are required in advance.

Reserve Tickets


Active Theater logoAbout the Active Theater:

The Active Theater, now in its fifth season, has developed a reputation for producing and developing thought provoking, contemporary American plays.  Broadway World announced that “For a company that fills the role of the ‘new kid’ on the Indie Theatre scene,The Active Theater may move to the head of the class very quickly.”  Active’s critically acclaimed production history includes Lee Blessing’s Two Rooms, Toni Press Coffman’s Touch, New York Premieres of William Donnelly’s Magnetic North and Tony Dodge’s Venus Flytrap, and two World Premieres developed by the company- Jennie Contuzzi’s Body Language and Matthew Keuter’s Bridgeboy.  First New York Revivals include Romance Romance and Richard Greenberg’s The Violet Hour, which garnered an Innovative Theatre Award Nomination for Best Revival.  In the 2012-2013 season, to better honor their mission and commitment to emerging artists, Active shifted their focus from production to play development, creating an innovative program in which Active dedicates an entire season to the development of each play selected.

Our mission is to discover and develop vital, culturally provocative original American plays and prepare them for fully realized premiere productions.

The Active Theater serves as a safe, yet dynamic, incubator for the development process, shepherding new work through a series of quality readings and workshops. Upon completion of a thorough development process, we present a polished workshop of the play to the New York theater industry to find appropriate producing partners for a future, fully-realized production.

Learn more at the Active Theater’s website.