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Puppy love: Dog stars in Williamsburg theater festival

The dog star: Canine actor Boscoe Barles will star in five short plays on Aug. 10 to raise money for an animal shelter.
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This actor is the shihtzu!

An adorable Williamsburg doggy will star in a series of short plays this weekend to raise money for the shelter from which he was adopted. The “Boscoe Barles Bestival,” at the Brick on Aug. 10, will feature five short tails written to showcase their protagonist pup, who is “the most special puppy in the whole world,” according to his owner.

“He just lights up any room he’s in,” said Charles Quittner. “I’m so surprised I got this perfect shihtzu, who is so wonderful and perfect.”

Quittner, a theater director and producer, adopted Boscoe Barles last year, and the (probably) two-year-old former stray has since embarked on an acting career, with roles in several Off-Off Broadway shows, including playing a Roman senator in “Their food tastes better when they see us starve, or Coriolanus,” at the Brick, and a dog named Barker in “Interabang” at Loading Dock Theatre. The canine cutie was born for the spotlight, said Quittner.

“Boscoe loves people — he actually loves being out,” he said. “And he loves theater.”

The festival on Aug. 10 will feature five fuzzy sketches, each six to 10 minutes long, showing that Boscoe is up fur anything.

“In one of the plays, Boscoe plays a small-time mayor who has to whip two Washington-wannabe interns into shape,” said Quittner. “He really shows his range — in one, he plays a chinchilla!”

Boscoe does not do tricks, said Quittner, although he can stand on his hind legs. His most valuable skill — in addition to being adorable — is his ability to remain calm during action scenes.

The human actors have a back-up plan in case Boscoe gets distracted, said Quittner.

“Just in case, all the actors have treats, so he’ll be extra responsive,” he said.

All proceeds from the show will go to the Brooklyn Animal Resource Coalition, the Williamsburg shelter where Boscoe was adopted. The theater will also feature pictures of currently adoptable dogs, in hopes of inspiring the audience, said Quittner.

“I’m hoping that after seeing Boscoe Barles do his thing, they will think ‘I want my own superstar dog,’ ” he said.

“Boscoe Barles Bestival” at the Brick (575 Metropolitan Ave. between Union and Lorimer streets in Williamsburg, (718) 907–6189, www.bricktheater.com). Aug. 10 at 2 p.m. $15–$25.

Reach arts editor Bill Roundy at broundy@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–4507.
Updated 2:42 pm, August 8, 2019
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