What is it like to experience the wonder the northern lights from a remote section of the state of Maine near the Canadian border?
Essex Theatre Company in Essex, New York, will explore this in John Cariani’s romantic comedy, Almost, Maine, in a pay-what-you-can preview on Friday, July 8 at 7 pm, and then July 9, 15, and 16 at 7 pm and July 10 and 17 at 5 pm at the historic Masonic Lodge, located at 2756 Essex Road in Essex.
The author points out, “Almost, Maine takes place over a period of about ten minutes. Each scene starts at around 8:50 pm and ends a little after 9 pm on a Friday night in the middle of winter. The plot of each scene in Almost, Maine includes some sort of ‘magical moment’. These magical moments are all happening at exactly the same time – at 9 pm. The northern lights and the magical moments give rise to one another.”
The moments are enhanced by Julian Fleisher’s interstitial music provided through Dramatists Play Service, Inc.
Actors Gina Lindsey, Da’Ron Allen, Lee Ann Thomas, Andrew Murphy, and Maria Murphy bring twenty characters to life in this surprising, metaphorical piece, designed/directed by Kathy Poppino, with technical assistance from Vicky Sloan, Butch Wardell, Jeremy Clifford and other assistance from Peggy Harris and Mike George.
As The New York Times says, “ALMOST, MAINE is a series of nine amiably absurdist vignettes about love, with a touch of good-natured magic realism… witty, romantic, unsentimental. A beautifully structured play, with nifty surprise endings (most but not all of them happy).”
All tickets are $12 except for the July 8 preview, which is pay-what-you-can.
For more information and to order tickets, please visit: www.essextheatre.org.
Almost, Maine is made possible, in part, by the Essex County Arts Council’s Cultural Assistance Program (CAP) Grant provided by Essex County, NY, and by grants from the Adirondack Foundation, and the Live Lively Foundation and is performed with permission from Dramatists Play Service, Inc.
The Essex Theatre Company, a long-time grantee of ECAC, was formed in 1993 to serve the community of Essex and the surrounding towns by using local talent to act, direct, work behind the scenes, write, and sing in theatrical and musical productions in the summer months and occasionally year-round. To date, they have produced a total of 76 shows – 28 musicals and 48 plays.
—Kathryn Poppino and Susan Hughes
Photo at top: Essex Theatre Company website photo.