Mark Twain’s Traveling Theatre is bringing you Live Theater at a price that you can afford. Free, maybe. Pay only what you can afford. Nothing?! . No problem, just pass on the good will. A donation? Great, pick a charity. There plenty of worthy ones. And it’s not likely their need is going away anytime soon. Yes, we have a facebook site for our starving actors fund. Check it out or send a check, whatever.
MTTT will bring you six original works that will be performed in the weeks ahead. They involve the fascinating lives of Mark Twain, Frederick Douglass, Ulysses S. Grant and Harriett Beecher Stowe. This is history as it should’ve been written, with plenty of fact and just enough BS. It’s Like the History Channel with a sense of humor.
Don’t know your history then it’s about time you learn. Sit back, enjoy it and laugh. You will find that these are some of the Greatest American Heroes to ever have graced this country but all too human. I challenge you to watch this and separate the fact from the artifact.
We are bringing “His Excellency Mark Twain” And “Stowe’s War” back again in the weeks ahead for those who missed them. Sort of a bonus round. If you missed “Mark Twain 2020”, you are in luck, we will be running that rant live weekly until the we capture the vote of every American who did not vote in the last presidential election (106 million)
For those of you who are convinced this is the worst we have ever seen, join us for “Twain For Our Times”. He has seen worse and survived it. Join us for a message of hope and redemption. Otherwise wallow in your social media pit.
If you haven’t seen any of these shows live, then what are you waiting for? An invitation? OK, so here’s an invitation- just go to Marktwaintravelingtheatre.com and become a subscriber. Find out weeks in advance of shows to come and get access to recordings of your favorite show. You might even get a t-shirt. Worn by one of the actors while performing.
If you are one of our loyal, binge watching Fans then we promise you a new show once a week until hell freezes over. Or we run out of good ideas.
If you are tired of our messages, let us know and we will take you off of our list. You only got on our list by joining us at, one or more, of our shows. Finally, if you have suggestions for future shows then let us know. They can’t be any screwier than what we have planned.
Amazing Grace – Hannah Lee DeFrates
Mark Twain for President 1880. As one of America’s most beloved humorists and authors Twain was a shoo-in, or so he thought. Playwright Rick Bonnette brings Twain together with his closest friends- former president Ulysses S. Grant, Harriet Beecher Stowe and Frederick Douglass into a “War Council” with the intent to seal the deal Twain for President.
Never was there a celebrity with such name recognition. Never were the stars so aligned for a candidate. Never was there such a “War Council”. They covered all of the bases and they were joined in their universal opinion. Hell no to Twain in 1880!!!!
Our play begins at the opulent home of Mark Twain in Hartford, Connecticut. Twain has gathered a cabal of the most influential people in the country. The hard earned reputations of these people span the globe. With them at his side, or in his administration, he was unquestionably unbeatable.
But as it is often said “familiarity breeds….” Raw and raucous by turns the “War Council” disabuse “His Excellency Mark Twain” of his presidential notions and raise “parlor politics” to a new art form
Rick Bonnette (Mark Twain)
Rick was a teacher and coach for ten years and he has been a financial advisor for nearly thirty years more.
Rick became an actor by accident and playwright only of necessity. Rick first appeared as an actor in the play “Big River”with the Haddonfield Plays and Players back at the turn the century (this century). As Pap Finn he performed a forgettable solo number. It was a performance he sincerely hopes the audience will forgive and forget.
This experience prompted him to write a one man show recreating Mark Twain. He would insist that it was a one man show because of his committed business schedule. Others might suggest his ego would not allow room on the stage for anyone else.
Rick has recreated the wit and wisdom of Mark Twain in every non-paying venue imaginable. Rick has donated his time and energy to a wide range of non-profit organizations and he looks forward to expanding those efforts in the years ahead.
Until then he will continue to pursue a healthy (?) obsession with Mark Twain by writing obscure plays which he will perform with his accomplices of the Mark Twain Traveling Theatre Troupe.
This obsession is mercifully tolerated by his wife Toni and three adult children- Eric, Breton and Brittany and their spouses Victoria, Emily and Clayton. He rejects the notion that he should be called Pop Twain by growing brood of grandchildren.
Rick fully expects to continue to mine the genius of Mark Twain and his friends to bring life to history and history to you.
Grover McCants – Frederick Douglass
Born in Detroit, Michigan, Grover began acting at 5 years old as the Talking Christmas Tree at Winterhalter Elementary School in Detroit. Through out elementary, middle and high school Grover has been involved in drama, public speaking and entertainment. Grover was a member of the Clark Players in Atlanta Georgia appearing in theater productions there as well as The Farmington Players in Michigan portraying Reverend Sykes in a production of Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird in 2011. Appearing as an extra in films such as Hoffa, Zebrahead and Renaissance Man in the 90s, Grover was cast as the lead in The House That Broke in 2011 and the rest is history amassing 49 credits in multiple lead, supporting and featured roles in independent features and shorts. In 2016 Grover was cast on TV One’s Fatal Attraction in seasons 5, 8 and 10. In 2017, Grover was cast in a recurring role on ID Discovery’s Murder Chose Me as the lead character’s Grandfather, Grandfather Demery.
With a background in transportation, professional sports working for the Back to Back Bad Boy World Champion Detroit Pistons, Comcast as an on air personality/director producer of local programming and advertising/marketing expert with his own Hollingsworth McCants Media Group which serves entertainment, political, educational, legal, medical and business clients Grover is a well rounded experienced individual who is a current Doctoral candidate and also holds a Bachelor of Science in Marketing, Master degrees in both Psychology as well as Business Administration from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona. The combination of versatility in film, theater and television as well as a wealth of life experience make Grover an actor who brings it by the second. Grover has been married to Karen McCants for 27 years, they have three children, Tiffany, Thurgood, Jacqueline, one granddaughter Skylar and a 2 year old Grandson Jaxon Andre.
Brian Wayman – Ulysses S. Grant
Brian is making his Zoom Debut in Dinner with Sam. Brian, a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, is a stay-at-home dad (quarantine humor), voice actor, and ready to go outside.
His credits include Dracula, The Elephant Man, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The Shadow Box, and Wuthering Heights.
He’s loved having his lovely wife, Jeanne, and two bright sons, Zach and Matt, as audience members but knows they’re ready for him to leave the house.
He expects to soon find a razor.
Hannah Lee DeFrates -Harriett Beecher Stowe
Hannah is an actress and singer from South Jersey. This is her first production with Mark Twain’s Traveling Theatre and she is so stoked to be able to portray Harriet Beecher Stowe. She is currently in the process of studying theatre and dance at Muhlenberg College. Some of her favorite past credits include The Library (Student), Muhlenberg College; Footloose (Vi Moore), HTHS; and Our Town (Mrs.Webb), HTHS. Shout out to everyone involved in this production: Thank you!