A BRIEF HISTORY OF COLD SOUP
In the beginning there was soup.
Somewhere between the Federalist Theatre of the Great Depression and the “free speech zones” of the Bush Depression, Cold Soup was born.
We were conceived in the heat of anti-war politics and the need to vent the rampant Bush Derangement Syndrome, so common amongst our friends. Our first major effort was, “The Long-awaited, Much Anticipated, Carlrove Goes to Hell.” In case the real Karl Rove noticed, we could deny it was him that we really wanted to send to hell.
Along the way, we covered “Hunting with Dick Cheney,” “Guarding the Queen (two rifle wielding hippies guarding a fourteen-foot sensemellia plant), Beckett, Austin, Murat/Sade, Monte Python, and an original take on Frankenstein (except our monster wore a giant potato suit). The Scottish play’s witches made an appearance as environmental harbingers, and we attempted to demonstrate the French Revolution with a chopped head of cabbage as King Louie. West Side Story was reprised by oldsters on walkers, and Maria danced under our street light.
Staged efforts, or stuff we had a script for, were rare. We started out with more spoken word performers including Alice Lovelace, Rupert Fike, Theresa Davis, Betty Ann Wylie, Deb Hiers, Priscilla Smith, Tony “Paleo Poet” Martin, and Stefen Miko.
Stuff we had a script for was performed by the likes of Joe Kelly, Bob Watkins, Madeline Saint Romain, Greg LoCorto, Melanie Von West to name many. In 2008, Clay Spurz brought full-time music, with real amplification. Craig Rafuse did the “dead” and joined us as a shooting star. Along with these folks came the dancers Mariann Sanderson and Lori Teague.
Most performed on a front porch stage of about six square feet before an abundant audience of 25. Donna (Kitchen Goddess) Rutherford dished a wide variety of cold soups and sweet desserts that would make your pancreas say “howdy.” Lesly Fredman directed this maelstrom of talent and sang like a bird. And I, the Shit-Hammer of Sophomoria, dropped the Cold News.
To date, we’ve developed fans. We haven’t gotten underwear with house keys thrown at us, yet, but over the decade we’ve overcome obscurity, self censorship, and Homeland Security. Mission Acomplished.