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Wednesday, 20 March 2013 12:34

The soul of Wit'

PTC presents Pulitzer Prize-winning drama

BANGOR There are few things as powerful as live theater.

Seeing stories unfold right in front of us is a beautiful thing. We are separate from the action onstage, yet the performers are undeniably present. That combination makes theater capable of telling tales in a way that impacts us in a way that is unlike any other art form. And even then, some pieces achieve more so much more. 

Published in Buzz

PTC production offers weird, wild trip to the Florida swamps

BANGOR We are not alone in the universe at least, not according to some eccentrics living in the swamps of Florida.

That's part of the story behind 'The Sugar Bean Sisters,' a play by Nathan Sanders. Penobscot Theatre Company is presenting their production of the show a Maine premiere through Feb. 17 at the Bangor Opera House.

It's the tale of the Nettles sisters, two spinsters living out their days in their deceased father's shack in the town of Sugar Bean, Florida. There's Willie May (Irene Dennis), a born-again Mormon who supports their little family by way of her 'grapefruit fortune,' a settlement for an injury she received while working at a citrus plant. And then there's Faye Clementine (A.J. Mooney), a woman whose main claim to fame is an appearance on the cover of 'The Weekly World News' after a UFO sighting 20 years ago.

Published in Happenings
Thursday, 13 December 2012 12:20

Bet your bottom dollar on Annie'

PTC presents modern musical favorite

BANGOR One of the most wonderful artistic traditions here in Bangor is the annual holiday production at Penobscot Theatre. It has become a vital part of this celebratory time for many area families.

For a long time, we got various and sundry adaptations of the Charles Dickens classic 'A Christmas Carol' the occasional 'Gift of the Magi' notwithstanding. In recent years, however, the offerings have diversified. We've gotten to spend time with Crumpet the Elf in David Sedaris's 'Santaland Diaries.' We've gotten the musical stylings of 'Plaid Tidings,' and we've watched Ralphie pine for a Red Ryder BB gun in 'A Christmas Story.'

Published in Happenings
Wednesday, 05 December 2012 11:47

The sun will come out

PTC bringing Annie' to life in Bangor

BANGOR - This holiday season, Penobscot Theatre Company is undertaking one of its most ambitious projects to date.

The musical classic 'Annie' will be gracing the stage at the Bangor Opera House this December, with performances running from Dec. 5 through 29.

'Annie' is based on the long-running comic strip 'Little Orphan Annie' by Harold Gray. The strip ran for over 85 years, inspiring film adaptations and a radio show (a show that made an appearance of its own in last year's PTC holiday production of 'A Christmas Story'). However, it is the 1977 stage musical not to mention the 1982 film version of that musical that is the 'Annie' that holds the most meaning for us.

Published in Cover Story
Wednesday, 24 October 2012 13:37

You'll want to test-drive Becky's New Car'

BANGOR  Becky (Stacey Scott) is a middle-aged wife and mother who has sunk into the tepid routine of her life with her loving but average husband, Joe (Ron Lisnet), and her 26-year-old perpetual student son, Chris (Brad LaBree). Though she isn't looking for it, temptation for a new life literally walks in while she is working late one evening and Walter Flood (Ken Stack), a rich and absent-minded widower bumbles into her life.

Flood assumes that Becky's spouse has also passed away and begins making romantic overtures toward her. Flattered and confused, Becky doesn't deflect them as well as she could have and finds her simple life becoming more interesting and much more complicated in turns.

Published in Happenings
Wednesday, 12 September 2012 14:22

Patsy Cline reborn at Penobscot Theatre

AlwaysPatsy Cline' a portrait of music, love and friendship

BANGOR Penobscot Theatre Company has kicked off its 39th season with its production of 'AlwaysPatsy Cline,' written by Ted Swindley.

'AlwaysPatsy Cline' tells the story of the legendary singer's relationship and ongoing correspondence with an ardently admiring fan. Louise Seger is a lonely Houston housewife, a divorced mother of two who absolutely falls in love with Patsy's voice the moment she first hears it on a television variety show. Before long, Louise is calling her local radio station every day, making multiple requests for Patsy Cline songs.

Published in Happenings
Wednesday, 05 September 2012 14:05

The play is the thing

A preview of the 2012-13 PTC season

BANGOR The 2012-2013 season from Penobscot Theatre Company is upon us.

This year marks the 39th season for Bangor's professional theatre, as well as the first full season for new Artistic Director Bari Newport, who has been at the helm since January of this year.

It's a vast and varied collection of plays, with Maine premieres and classics, madcap comedies and challenging dramas. There really is something for all tastes.

Published in Happenings

BANGOR - Penobscot Theatre Company will present its popular Northern Writes Festival from June 18 to June 23 at the historic Bangor Opera House and at venues around downtown.

With a special eye towards the best new plays sprouting up right here in Maine, PTC's Northern Writes New Works festival continues to be a creative hotbed for new plays nationwide. PTC received over 100 new plays from writers across the country. PTC's staff read them all and chose a select few to workshop via a series of developmental workshops and readings.

"Audience participation is a key component of the Northern Writes development process," said Artistic Director Bari Newport, "and in 38 seasons we have developed perceptive audiences who know a thing or two about how to help a writer. At Northern Writes, audiences provide thoughtful feedback in structured environment. It couldn't be done without them!"

Published in Happenings
Wednesday, 06 June 2012 14:50

Don't change a thing

I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change' at PTC

BANGOR Love matters.

Once we grow past the 'girls/boys are icky' stage, love is one of our primary fixations as humans. It's one of the few journeys in life that every one of us has embarked upon. Love is a battlefield; engaging in that battle of the sexes can be scary, sure, but it's also one of the most meaningful parts of our lives.

'I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change,' a musical written by Jimmy Roberts and Joe DiPietro, is the sort of show that springs up as a response to the humor and heartbreak of romance not to mention the absurdity of love. Penobscot Theatre is producing the show through June 17 at the Bangor Opera House.

The show consists of a series of musical vignettes, songs and sketches that all share the same basic focal point love. Moments all along love's timeline are explored. There's a look at the complicated world of dating both early on and late in life. Couples are drawn close by passion, only to slowly cool due to familiarity. There are beginnings and endings and everything in between. The wins and losses pile up, but through it all love. 'ILYYPNC' manages to make a stop at all of love's various checkpoints, illustrating truths that are sweet and poignant.

Published in Happenings
Thursday, 05 April 2012 15:14

Ink' leaves interesting impression

PTC presents world premiere play

BANGOR Penobscot Theatre has brought the first world premiere in the organization's long history with their current production of the play 'Ink' by Alice van Buren. The show is running through April 15 at the Bangor Opera House.

'Ink' is the story of Mary Rowlandson, a minister's wife in New England. In 1676, at the height of the now mostly forgotten King Philip's War, Rowlandson was kidnapped by a band of Native American warriors. For 82 days, she was their captive. Finally, she was ransomed and released.

After trying and failing to move past the trauma of the experience, Mary was eventually persuaded by community leaders to write down her story. This captivity narrative would become the first true literary sensation in the United States.

Published in Happenings
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