The West is an ensemble-devised Absurdist Western Music Hall Drama about the last days of Billy the Kid.
The play begins with an auction for two identical antique guns: One is the gun that Pat Garret used to kill Billy the Kid. The other was made in the same factory on the same day, but it did not kill Billy the Kid. The guns get mixed up, and are instantly careened into the past to watch the final days of the infamous outlaw and the law-man who tracked him down and killed him. Simultaneously, we watch the Auctioneer from the first scene come home to his wife leaving him. The cast takes us through an absurd, wildly comedic, intensely physical exploration of truth, fiction, and the stories we tell ourselves and each other.
The West had its world premier at the Off Broad St Theatre on March 26, 2014. The cast and creative team was:
Director: Alex Bechtel
Set Design: Rhada Vakaria
Lighting Design: Dominic Chacon
Costume Design: Jillian Keys
Cast: Scott Sheppard, Nick Gillete, Alice Yorke, Justin Rose, Jennifer Kidwell, Martha Stuckey, Ben Grinberg, Caitlin Antram, Dan Higbee, Lauren Harries, Olivia Jorgensen, Katie Gould
Assistant Director/Stage Manager: Adam Kerbel
"Here’s how the West was won: with toe-tapping music, old-fashioned bravura, and with a slick script.
The show is 70 minutes of fun, worthy of the best works you’d see at the annual Fringe Festival here." - Howard Shapiro, WHYY
"Much of the material inspires laughter, and the original lyrics and music (particularly the title song, charismatically performed by Justin Rose’s Balladeer) would easily find a home on any country music station.
…Bechtel possesses tremendous gifts." - Jim Rutter, The Philadelphia Inquirer