Glencoe actor Kurt Schulz’s week started on a high note and promises to end well, too.
Monday night he headed to Okoboji, Iowa, for the private premiere of “Loon Lake,” at Cinemagic Great Lakes 7, a sister theater to Century 9 in Hutchinson.
Word is that all his scenes are intact in the movie, which isn’t always the case. For instance, all Kevin Costner’s scenes in “The Big Chill” ended up on the cutting room floor.
Schulz was cast in the role of Larson in the horror thriller. He spent two days in September last year filming in and around Round Lake, Minnesota.
The movie is the story of Louis Olson, who is eager to escape the grief and nightmares of the city, so he travels to southwest Minnesota seeking the peace of the rural countryside. When he accidentally disturbs the grave of a supposed local “witch,” Mary Jane Terlinden, what began as a peaceful reprieve unravels into a haunting nightmare from which Louis cannot escape — but is it all just in his head?
According to director Ansel Faraj, the film weaves back and forth between the present and Mary Jane’s life in 1880. Schulz’s character appears as part of that 1880 story line.
“The character of Larson is sympathetic to Mary Jane’s persecution, but is ultimately overruled by the town leader, Pastor Owen Janson (David Selby),” Faraj said.
Interested in seeing the film? It’s available to stream on Amazon.
Schulz couldn’t loiter south of the border because he had to be in Litchfield at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday. He was emceeing local talent in “The Ed Sullivan Show” at the Meeker County Senior Expo.
ONE PERFORMANCE ONLY
Next up for the actor is a performance of his one-man show, “Old Herbaceous,” at 7 p.m. Friday at New Journey UCC Church in Hutchinson. Admission is free but a collection will be taken to benefit HOMES, which stands for Housing Options in McLeod for Emergency Shelter.
Schulz originally performed the play in 2015 at the historic Episcopal church in downtown Hutchinson. Since then, he has staged it at private events as well as part of a double feature of plays earlier this year for the FungusAmongus Players of Dassel-Cokato.
The Glencoe native was introduced to the play more than 20 years ago by a friend who was a director at the Old Log Theater.
It’s the story of Herbert Pinnegar, who was born to common folk. The plot turns on the enduring relationship between Pinnegar and Lady Charteris of the manor house. Their time together is revealed through his telling of stories, drinking tea, potting plants and so on. Through humorous and touching anecdotes, Pinnegar recalls his life from boyhood into old age.
The set is simple — an old green house in the gardens of an English manor house.
Unlike most roles that an actor plays, Pinnegar is one that keeps coming around.
As a result, Schulz said he finds the character inhabiting him more.
“I frequently ask myself, ‘What would Old Herbaceous/Herbert Pinnegar do?’” he said. “I think my use and understanding of the language is more acute. That enhances the timing and pacing. It continues to be fun.”
It’s a wonderful play. I’ve seen it several times and Schulz just keeps getting better and better.
Friday night’s performance is an opportunity to get the word out about HOMES, too. In case you’re not familiar with the organization, it’s a local group that provides hope through housing. Its mission is to provide the homeless in McLeod County with short-term housing so they can work with service providers to achieve their goal of self-sufficiency. For more information, visit homesmcleod.org.
Following “Old Herbaceous,” Schulz is heading to the History Theatre in St. Paul on Monday, where he is playing the role of a senator from Virginia in PRIME Productions’s “The City of Conversation.” Tickets are free for this event but must be reserved at bit.ly/30Poak5.