'Our Town' to open theatre season

cast members of Our TownSUNY Oswego’s theatre department will start its season with “Our Town,” Thornton Wilder’s classic study of the magic of life’s everyday moments.

Mark Cole, professor and chair of theatre at SUNY Oswego, directs the story that follows the small-town lives of the Webb and Gibbs families in the early 20th century. The production opens Friday, Oct. 19, in Tyler Hall’s Waterman Theatre.

Act one presents a day in the life of the New Hampshire town of Grover’s Corners and introduces the budding romance between Emily Webb and George Gibbs. As the plot follows the lives of Emily, George, their families and the townspeople through subsequent acts, audiences are reminded of the brevity and beauty of human life, Cole explained.

The character of the Stage Manager (played by Nathaniel Angstrom) guides the audience through everyday events. Residents include Dr. Gibbs (Greg Salmon) and Mrs. Gibbs (Megan McGarvey) and their children Rebecca (Nicole Arbes) and George (Trevor Franklin). Their neighbors include Mr. Webb (Ryan Sprague), Mrs. Webb (Deva Holub) and their children Emily (Lucaya Luckey-Bethany) and Wally (Billy Darvill).

Other townspeople include paperboy Joe Crowell Jr. (Mike Racioppa) and his brother Si (Kris Vincencio), milkman Howie Newsome (Mike Kiley), church choir director Simon Stimson (Ryan Powers), Constable Warren (Steven Screws) and busybody Mrs. Soames (Samantha Mason).

Members of the church choir and additional characters are played by Jessica Bauer, Jodi Costello, Joshua Gadek, Kathryn Kobos, Gina Mazzoli, Steve Mazzoccone, Ian Ramsey, Danielle Valeriano, Dan Williams and Jessica Weiss.

“Wilder had spent time during summers teaching and studying in New Hampshire,” Cole said. “The Grover’s Corners of the play is a composite of his observations about the locales and people of the towns he visited. He wrote that ‘the writing of the play . . . sprang from a deep admiration for those little white towns in the hills.’”

The production’s actual stage manager is sophomore theatre major Megan Myerov. Senior theatre major Christopher Cherkis oversees scene design. Faculty designers on the production team include Joe Rial for lighting, Kitty Macey for costumes and Michael De Almeida for sound. Julie Pretzat, professor and chair of the music department, leads the musical preparation of the production.

A preview performance of “Our Town” will begin at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18, with all seats $5. Subsequent curtains will rise at 8 p.m. Oct. 19 to 22, with a 2:30 p.m. Sunday matinee on Oct. 23.

For the regular run, tickets cost $10, $9 for seniors and students, and $7 for SUNY Oswego students.

For reservations or information, call the Tyler Hall box office at 312-2141 or e-mail tickets@oswego.edu.

- END -

(Posted: Sep 14, 2005)