Born Yesterday – Play – Theatre9/12

Elevator Thoughts (aka Tweet): Born Yesterday play w/ Theatre9/12. If Melania stood up to Donald Trump, it could have unfolded this way. Good commentary on political corruption.

Synopsis from the Theatre: Born Yesterday is a scathing comedy about the idealism visualized in the United States Constitution corrupted by greed, ignorance, self-service, and disillusion shortly after World War II. The self-made millionaire, Harry Brock, has thieved his way up the ladder to purchasing Senators. Paul Verral, an international journalist, sidles his way into Brock’s new Washington D.C. circle, endearing himself to the criminal who hires Paul to class up his main squeeze: a “showgirl” of great beauty and no desire to behave properly among the stuffed shirts, nor the effort needed to think. Without altering text or era, Theatre9/12 re-interprets this hysterical play paralleling today’s events.

Reviewed Performance: 3/4/23 Evening on Opening Weekend

Type: Play

World Premiere: No

Several or Few Scenes: Few – Only 3 scenes

Defined Plot/Storyline: Not extensive – There’s only so much that can occur in 3 scenes!

Recommendation: See it if you like supporting small intimate theatre and you’re okay with plays containing few scenes.

Was This the First Time I Attended a Production of this Show: Yes, and this is the first time I’ve attended a production from this theatre company. I was especially curious since they self-described the production as “presented through the Actors’ Equity Association Members’ Project Code,” which I’ve never heard of.

Would I See It Again 3 Years from Now: I’d consider it if a theatre company like Seattle Rep or ACT Theatre presented a full-blown professional equity production

Rating Compared to Other Shows with the Same Production Value:
4.25 Stars (Out of 5 Stars)

Equity Actors: 2

Total Number of Actors: 11

Length (Including Any Intermission): 2 hours

Intermission: Yes

Other Rave(s) Not Mentioned in Elevator Thoughts

  • Trans Visibility: This production uniquely casted a transgender actress in a lead role, which I think Helena Persephone Trolli performed well. It was hilarious when she suddenly used a deeper voice momentarily at the end. It reminded me of when my dad and I saw a recent performance at Teatro Zinanni and my dad didn’t “clock” the performer until they did the same thing at the end.


  • Stage Footprint: The acting space seemed too large for the performance. Maybe place the hotel door closer to the living room. Try moving the bar closer to the living room as well and don’t let the actors turn their back to the audience when pouring drinks.

Other Musing(s) and Observation(s)

  • Comparison Between Acts: In the first act, I needed to try harder to process the actors’ dialogue. The second act felt easier to follow. I’d probably attribute this to the actual script and not the execution itself. But honestly, I feel like most plays and musicals require extra brain power from me for the first quarter of the show to figure out who’s who and their background!

Theatre Company: Theatre9/12

Venue: Trinity Parish Hall

Venue Physical Address: 609 8th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104

Price: Pay-what-you-can based on what you enter on their website

Dates: March 3 to 26, 2023

Seating: General Admission

Parking: There’s free parking at Skyline’s garage at 801 Columbia St, Seattle, WA 98104. Entrance is on Columbia Street. Read the theatre company’s website for more details.

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Other Video +/- Pictures: See pictures in video and under video by Jeff Berryman

Cast and Production Team: See after pictures and video below

@showsiveseen “Born Yesterday” #play w/ Theatre9/12. If Melania stood up to Donald Trump, it could have unfolded this way. Good commentary on political #corruption. Review: Photos by Jeff Berryman. #theatre ♬ Anything Goes – Sutton Foster & Anything Goes New Broadway Company Orchestra
Marvin Grays, Margaret Bicknell, David S. Klein, and Helena Persephone Troilli
Tyler Scowcroft and Helena Persephone Trolli
Helena Persephone Trolli
Helena Persephone Trolli and Eric Smiley
David S. Klein and Helena Persephone Trolli
Tyler Scowcroft and Helena Persephone Trolli
Helena Shelby Schill
Willard Hotel Assistant Manager Jeremy Steckler
Manicurist/Barber/Waiter Mohana Rajagopal
Paul VerrallTyler Scowcroft
EddieAnthony Duckett
Harry BrockDavid S. Klein
Billie DawnHelena Persephone Trolli
Ed DeveryEric Smiley
Bellhop/Shoe-ShinerJames Nove
Senator Norval HedgesMarvin Grays*
Anna HedgesMargaret Bicknell*
DirectorCharles Waxberg
Producing DirectorPaul O’Connell
PlaywrightGarsin Kanin
Artistic Associate Terry Edward Moore
Assistant Director Rowan Gallagher
Hair And Wig MasterEric Smiley/Swing Salon
Lighting Tech Austin Krieg
Costumes, Set Design, Graphics, Music DesignTheatre9/12
* Member Actors’ Equity Association