Sunday, February 24, 2013

Eunice Players' Theatre Opens 44th Season With A Comedy

As the Eunice Players’ Theatre opens its 44th season, Jody L. Powell brings to the stage “The Glass  Mendacity”, written by Maureen Morley and Tom Willmorth.  The two-act comedy is a spoof of Tennessee Williams’ most famous plays, "The Glass Menagerie", "A Streetcar Named Desire", and "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof"

Williams’ plays are family dramas, and as such, they are filled with fragile and damaged Southern characters who are driven to madness, alcoholism, deceit, and fantasy. Thus, they are easy targets for lampooning and parody, which is just what the authors of this play have done with them. In addition, the authors have taken family members from each play, mixed them up, and created an entirely new outrageous brood. Audiences with a strong familiarity of Williams’ plays will get the most out of the show, but the humor of "The Glass Mendacity" is broad enough to make it appealing to all.

In this mingling of characters where families are merged and relationships are shifted, Big Daddy Dubois is played by Kevin Miller of Eunice.  He is well known on the Eunice stage for dramatic and comedic roles from “The Subject Was Roses”, all of the “abridged” and “Tuna” plays, and more.  In Lafayette, he was most recently seen in “The Rehearsal” and he is a member of Acadiana Repertory Theatre, having recently been in their production of “CAROL: A Broken Chain”.

Big Daddy’s wife, Amanda Dubois, who still recounts the number of gentlemen callers she had in her youth, is played by Mary Gail Lamonte DeVillier of Opelousas.  Mary Gail has been seen on the Eunice stage in many roles including that of Amanda Wingfield (from whom her current character is drawn) in “The Glass Menagerie”, Daisy in “Driving Miss Daisy” and Louise in “Always…Patsy Cline”.

Together, they are the parents of Brick, so rendered catatonic by self-pity and alcohol that he comes across as a real stiff.  He is played by a certain gentleman from Tennessee, whom the audience must see to appreciate.

Blanche Kowalski, the tragic nut case, is played by Deborah D. Ardoin of Eunice.  Debbi is a long time member of EPT, and a current member of Acadiana Repertory Theatre.  She was most recently seen in “The Murder Room” and “A Nice Family Gathering” in Eunice, and “Buried Child” in Lafayette.

In this twisted reality, Blanche is now married to the working-class brute Stanley Kowalski, played by John Snyder of Opelousas.  John has studied contemporary theatre at ULL and The American Theatre for Actors in New York City, as well as classical theatre at The British American Drama Academy at Oxford. Eunice audiences may remember him from years past in “Lend Me a Tenor” and “Playing Doctor”.

Maggie the Cat, the scheming seductress, is played by Katryn Schmidt of Lafayette.  No stranger to the stage, Katryn’s work includes roles in “Lost in Yonkers”, “Our Town”, and “The Vagina Monologues”.  Her film work includes “Lord Byron”, which was screened at the Sundance Festival in 2011.

Erin Segura of Lafayette plays Laura Dubois, keeper of a glass menagerie and the dreamer whose shyness is underscored by her limp. Erin has an extensive theatrical resume throughout Acadiana including the roles of Shelby in “Steel Magnolias” at Teche Theatre in Franklin, Rita in “Educating Rita” at Iberia Performing Arts League in New Iberia, and Lucy Harker in “Dracula” in Lafayette. 

Rounding out the cast is Allen Higginbotham of Eunice, playing Mitch, a combination of the gentleman caller and the lawyer acquaintance who properly greases the wheels and can’t keep his eyes off of Blanche.  Allen joined the cast of “Rumours” on the EPT stage 20 years ago, and made his way back to the boards in last season’s “On Golden Pond”.

Evening performances will be held March 14, 15, 21, 22, and 23 at 7:00 p.m.  A matinee will be held Sunday, March 17 at 2:00 p.m.  Dinner theatre (with steak and trimmings) is scheduled for Wednesday, March 20 at 6:00 p.m. at Ruby's on Second St., with the performance immediately following.  Individual tickets for the show will be on sale soon.  More information can be found on EPT’s Facebook page.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Eunice Players’ Theatre to Hold Auditions For "The Glass Mendacity"

The Eunice Players’ Theatre will hold auditions for their opening play of the 44th season, “The Glass Mendacity" by Maureen Morley and Tom Willmorth, on Monday, February 4 at 6:30 p.m. at the theatre at 121 S. Second St. in Eunice (between Ruby’s on Second St. and Bertrand’s Office Supplies).  Director Jody L. Powell needs 3 adult men and 4 adult women to fill the cast.  More people are needed to assist with set decoration, backstage duties, costuming, etc.  Rehearsals for the Tennessee Williams-based comedy will be held throughout February and March with production scheduled for mid- to late-March.  Auditions are open to everyone who wants to get involved with their local community theatre.  FMI, or to schedule an audition time, call Jody L. Powell at 337-580-1787.