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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
Wednesday, 23 May 2012 14:13

New theater company debuts in Belfast

Mid Coast Actors' Studio to present Hedda Gabler'

BELFAST One of the wonderful things about living in a lush creative environment such as ours is the steady appearance of new and interesting projects and organizations. People with passion tend to find a way.

The latest outbreak of that passion can be found in Belfast, where the newly-formed Mid Coast Actors' Studio is preparing to mount their inaugural production. The group is tackling one of the true classics of dramatic literature, Henrik Ibsen's 'Hedda Gabler.'

Jason Bannister, a performing arts teacher in Belfast, founded the group and proposed this piece as their first production.

'MCAS is a group that I started this winter,' said Bannister. 'We are trying to focus on older plays in the public domain, classics that don't get produced often in this area.

Published in Happenings
Wednesday, 16 May 2012 13:13

Running Wilde in Ellsworth

The Grand, Ten Bucks Theatre present 'The Importance of Being Earnest'

ELLSWORTH What's in a name?

It's a question asked by Shakespeare, but English poet, playwright and wit Oscar Wilde took a stab at answering it with 'The Importance of Being Earnest,' considered by many to be the author's masterpiece.

The Grand, in collaboration with Ten Bucks Theatre, is presenting a production of 'The Importance of Being Earnest' at the Grand in Ellsworth. The show is running through May 20.

'Earnest' is the story of one Jack Worthing (Greg Mihalik). Jack goes to London to pay a visit to his good friend Algernon Moncrief (Nathan Roach) with the intent of proposing to Algernon's cousin Gwendolyn (Amelia Forman-Stiles). There's just one small problem everyone in London thinks Jack's name is Ernest.

Published in Happenings
Thursday, 26 April 2012 08:30

A killer show

Winterport Open Stage presents murderous comedy

WINTERPORT Marriage can be murder. And as presented by one local theater company, said murder can be very, very funny.

Winterport Open Stage is presenting 'The Smell of the Kill,' a play by Michele Lowe and directed by Dominick Varney, through April 29 at the Wagner Middle School in Winterport.

Nicky (Brianne Beck), Debra (Jenny Hart) and Molly (Christie Robinson) are three women whose relationships with one another are built almost entirely around the fact that their respective husbands have been friends since college. The men meet up monthly for cards, cigars and dining room golf (no really) while their wives retire quietly to the kitchen for chat, cards and Chardonnay.

Published in Happenings

LEWISTON/AUBURN The Public Theatre, Lewiston/Auburn's Professional Theatre, ends its 2011-12 season with the heartwarming and poignant comedy 'On Golden Pond,' running May 4 through 13. Featuring real life couple Ellen Crawford and Mike Genovese (from NBC's E.R.), tickets for this popular, much-loved play are already in high demand, and an additional 2 p.m. matinee performance has been added on Saturday, May 12.

The loons are back on Golden Pond, and so are Norman and Ethel Thayer, a retired professor and his feisty wife. Returning to their annual lakeside cottage in Maine, their summer is unexpectedly transformed by a visit from their middle-aged daughter, her fianc and his 13-year-old son.

The play explores the triumphs and difficulties faced by a couple in the twilight years of a long marriage as well as the complicated relationship between a daughter and her hard-to-please father. Along the way, a comical and touching bond develops between the young boy and the old man. Many people may be familiar with the much-loved film based on the play starring Henry Fonda and Kathryn Hepburn. According to Director Christopher Schario, "The play is somewhat similar to the film, with a touch more humor, and it's easy to understand why Maine audiences have fallen in love with the story." In fact, author Ernest Thompson spent his summers along the shores of Great Pond, located in Belgrade, Maine, where the play is based.

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

BANGOR - While most people will be avoiding black cats, walking under ladders or stepping on cracks on Friday the 13th of April, the Husson University student run theater group will be engrossing itself in superstition as it prepares for its three-day performance of 'Dracula' at the Gracie Theatre on campus.

The play is being director by senior Christine White.

"One of my biggest things going into this performance is knowing that people know the character Dracula, but they don't know the context at all," explained White. "This is a great opportunity to get a little of the back story out there."

The theater group, which is made up of students from both Husson University and The New England School of Communications, has been rehearsing its lines for this blood-sucking vampire classic since January.

Published in Buzz
Wednesday, 21 March 2012 12:36

Ink' to take its first bow

Penobscot Theatre to present world premiere

BANGOR Penobscot Theatre Company has given audiences a lot to appreciate in recent years. We have seen harmonic musicals, door-slamming farces and modern classics grace the Bangor Opera House Stage. However, what we haven't seen is a world premiere.

Until now, that is.

PTC will be presenting the world premiere of the play 'Ink' by Alice Van Buren. The play, which originally appeared at the 2010 Northern Writes New Play Festival (and was voted audience favorite), is receiving the full stage treatment. Previews of the show begin on March 28, with the official opening night taking place on March 30.

It's the story of Mary Rowlandson, the first female author to be published in America. In February of 1676, preacher's wife Rowlandson was taken from her home in Lancaster, MA by Native Americans. She was their captive for nearly three months before finally being ransomed and returned to her husband.

Published in Happenings
Thursday, 16 February 2012 15:34

Love is in the air - Boeing Boeing'

PTC presents frantic farce

BANGOR - Love is a complicated thing. Finding the time to balance your own needs with the needs of your loved one can be difficult. Trying to balance the needs of three different loved ones? That's when things get crazy.

And hilarious.

Penobscot Theatre is presenting 'Boeing Boeing,' by Marc Camoletti, through Feb. 26 at the Bangor Opera House. It's a debut on multiple levels for PTC newcomer Bari Newport. Not only is this the first show of her tenure as the new artistic director of the theatre, but it's also her directorial debut here in Bangor.

Published in Happenings
UMaine presents a grown-up puppet musical
ORONO - From childhood, I've had an affinity for puppets. There's a wonderful anarchy that puppets seem to inspire that can result in moments that are engaging and absurd at the same time. Throw in the element of music and the potential for joyful chaos is maximized. It's the chance to create work that tells a story in a very unique way.

'Avenue Q,' the musical by Robert Lopez, Jeff Marz and Jeff Whitty, is that sort of work. A production of the Tony-winning show is currently being mounted by the University of Maine's School of Performing Arts. The show is directed by Sandra Hardy and musically directed by Danny Williams; it is being performed in Hauck Auditorium and runs through Feb. 19.


Published in Happenings
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