Office of Public Affairs

(315) 312-2265

Feb. 18, 2004

CONTACT: Kelly Cullinan, 312-3097


    OSWEGO -- A surreal set plus an alternately frightening and touching story should make the upcoming production of two Ray Bradbury stories, "The Traveler" and "The April Witch," at SUNY Oswego a compelling experience, director Mark Cole said.

    Cole, professor and chair of theatre at SUNY Oswego, created the original adaptation of two Bradbury short stories about the teen-aged Cecy Elliot. What seems normal is not, Cole said, as Cecy and her eccentric family have supernatural powers.

    The unusual storyline -- which Cole described to "'Our Town' filtered through 'The Twilight Zone'" -- called for an innovative set. Cole says that the central theme for the set design is a mixture of painter Norman Rockwell, famous for his depictions of everyday Americana, and Joseph Cornell, known for his surreal designs of boxes.

    The designs of the set are constructed to match the mood of the story. Since "The Traveler" is a chilling, suspenseful story, Cole said, the lighting and the setting support this mood. "The energy of 'The April Witch' is more joyous and romantic, however, and that's reflected in the costuming and the lighting," the director said. "The April Witch" also includes dance numbers that contribute to a lighter atmosphere.

    The costume designers are adding their own touches to enhance the production. Judith McCabe, the costume shop supervisor, explained that 1940s-style outfits, which tend to appear plain, dominate the show's wardrobe. This choice contributes to the normal exterior against which the supernatural tale unfolds.

    Sara F. Rodbourne, the production's assistant costume designer, said the team decided that a Norman Rockwell and Middle America style would be best for this show. Subdued colors and pastels also play a big part in clothing the characters because they help add to the mood and occasional darkness of the production, she added.

    A preview performance of "The Traveler" and "The April Witch" will be staged at 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 26, with all seats priced at $5. The show will continue with 8 p.m. performances Feb. 27 and 28 and March 5 and 6 and a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee March 7. Tickets for the main run cost $10, $9 for seniors and students, $7 for SUNY Oswego students.

    For reservations, call the Tyler Hall box office at 312-2141.

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Rehearsal image from Bradbury production

THREE'S A CROWD -- A bizarre love triangle develops between, from left, Ann Leary (Erin Naughton), Tom (Michael Climek) and Cecy Elliott (Heather Berg), a teen-ager with supernatural powers, in the upcoming SUNY Oswego theatre production of "The Traveler" and "The April Witch." Director Mark Cole, professor and chair of theatre, adapted two Ray Bradbury short stories for the stage. Cole described the idea for the production's look and feel as "'Our Town' filtered through 'The Twilight Zone.'" "The Traveler" and "The April Witch" will have five performances between Feb. 27 and March 7. For information or reservations, call the Tyler Hall box office at 312-2141.

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