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'A Streetcar Named Desire' set to open June 3 at YourTheatre

M&D Productions presents a classic masterpiece

June 03, 2010
"This isn't an easy show to do properly," says Director, Rich Russo. "Months of work have transpired even before we cast the show."

With only five weeks of rehearsals to reconstruct such a complex masterpiece of American literature, film and finally Broadway, and two revivals, M&D Productions is finally ready to share its vision of this masterpiece with you. The show opens Thursday, June 3, and runs June 4, 5, 10 - 12, and 17 - 19. All performances are at 8 p.m.

"This is the kind of evening you want to urge people to see, to remind them of theater's illuminating range, its ability to force you out of your resistant natural skepticism, to assess, reflect and feel," says Executive Director Mark DeLancey. "Tennessee Williams has created a piece of work that covers it all."

The play deals with a contest of wills and an attraction of opposing forces. When delicate Blanche DuBois arrives to stay with her sister, Stella, and brutal brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski, in their New Orleans tenement, the stark realities of both their worlds collide. Blanche's self-deceptive illusions — fueled by alcoholism — turn to madness when confronted with Stanley's savagery and the reality of life. From the classic scene of Stanley screaming "STELLA!" to the subtle choices of Blanches slow decline, M&D Productions proves that they are the smart choice for your entertainment dollar.

Renowned set designer Deb Jasien has created a world of post WWII New Orleans with great detail. She finds in the piece both poetry and unexpected humor. Her stark approach — Stella's dingy apartment, with its bare light bulbs and chipped tiles, has rarely appeared so cramped and shabby — departs from some other productions of "Streetcar" in their attempts to embroider the play with the intoxicating colors of New Orleans in the 1940s.

The stellar cast includes some of the area's most talented actors. Ryan Sturgis of Tamworth plays the lead, Stanley Kowalski, and his wife Heather Hamilton — through serendipity — plays his wife, Stella. The part of Blanche DuBois is creatively played by Christine Thompson. Mitch's best friend, Mitch, is played by Adam Kee, who has never performed with M&D Productions before. The upstairs neighbors, Eunice and Steve, who seemingly always argue, are being played by Jane Duggan and Rob Clark. Then to round out the cast is the Mexican poker buddy, played by Duggy Collomy, the collector played by Billy Cavanaugh, the nurse played by Deb Lyons and the role of the doctor is taken on by Gary Wilkinson.

"The show takes on a cadence all its own. Pacing, timing, and stage pictures reflect not only the motivation of the actors but drive home the tiniest of miracles that Williams has written into the script," says M&D's Artistic Director Ken Martin. "That is one of the reasons we chose this play. Every moment has the potential to create such deep interpretations."

But if the play isn't enough to entice you to come see it, M&D Productions has three other ways to bring you in to enjoy quality theater. If you have a friend who is a "Theater Virgin," bring them on June 3 and one of your tickets is free. This deal is offered on a first-come basis only, so the early bird gets the worm, so to speak. The box office will distribute a free ticket to the first 30 ticket holders who qualify.

Another discount M&D is offering is a "Pay What You Can Night" on June 4. M&D knows that the economy is hard on everyone, but they have a solution. This "Pay What You Can" night is simple. You make a reservation or show up at the door and they will not turn anyone away (unless they are sold out). See — M&D cares more about having you enjoy the show and becoming part of its growing family than making a quick buck. The third concept is simple! If they sell out on June 5, everyone present at that performance will receive a ticket to another of M&D's 2010 remaining performances for free.

And if all this doesn't convince you that M&D Productions is quickly becoming one of the best local theaters to provide value, quality theater, and the smart choice to make, there is one other reason to see "A Streetcar Named Desire." A rare Yousaf Karsh photograph of "A Streetcar Named Desire" playwright Tennessee Williams has been donated by Vince Pelote. Vintage Frameworks has graciously donated its talents to have this one-of-a-kind masterpiece matted and framed in a silk matting and a "marquee-looking" frame from the Larson Juhl's Biltmore (TM) Collection, a line of frame designs inspired by the quality, elegance and craftsmanship of America's greatest home, The Biltmore.

This masterpiece (valued at well over $450) will be raffled off for $5 a ticket and three for $10 at M&D Productions. The winner will be announced at the final performance night of June 19. Anyone wishing to purchase raffle tickets for this one-of-a- kind piece can do so by calling 662-7591.

If you would like to see what will quickly become one of the most talked- about performances in the Valley, tickets are $15 for groups of 10 or more, $18 for Members and $25 for general admission. You can also make reservations online by emailing info@your theatre.com.

Martin Lord Osman
Brewster Academy
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