I have to share something extraordinary that is coming to Muscatine Sept. 17. The Friends of the Muscatine Art Center are hard at work on the production of “Encore for Murder: The New Adventures of Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer,” created by Muscatine’s own Max Allan Collins! That would be enough to get me to rush out to buy a ticket (I will include the online ticketing link at the end of this column) but wait, there’s more! The one and only Gary Sandy, notably of WKRP in Cincinnati, will be playing Mike Hammer! Did I mention this show will be done in a radio show format and that it is the first production of the show in the great state of Iowa?!
I’m borrowing this next section directly from the Muscatine Art Center’s website because I don’t want to get any of it wrong, and it is really fascinating! “The Muscatine production is a special tribute for the 75th anniversary of the publication of the first Mickey Spillane novel, ‘I, the Jury,’ in 1947. Upon Spillane’s death in 2006, Collins developed the unfinished Hammer drafts, including a single page written by Spillane with the plot for this production. Local actors from Muscatine High School, Muscatine Community College, Pearl City Players, and local business personalities will appear on stage.”
I have to thank my friend, Karen Cooney, who is co-directing the production alongside Max Allan Collins. This show will serve as a fundraiser for our Muscatine Art Center and will be held at the Muscatine High School Theatre. Tickets are on sale now for just $15 per person, or you can purchase a “VIP Ticket” for $50 that includes premium seating along with access to the after-party held at The Merrill Hotel in downtown Muscatine.
I know from speaking to folks involved with this production that they are working hard and rehearsing a lot to deliver one heck of a live radio show performance for everyone in attendance! If anything, events like this make me wish I still had my radio show because I would do a lengthy interview with Max Allan Collins, Gary Sandy, and Karen Cooney to dive deep into this process! I think this is perhaps one of the most unique fundraisers that I’ve heard of!
Grab your tickets online before this show is sold out via this link; https://macfriends.booktix.com/. Don’t miss out on what is sure to be a memorable evening, all while supporting our fantastic Muscatine Art Center!