Rock River Players Present David Mamet’s “Oleanna”

Oleanna

WILLIAMSVILLE – The Rock River Players (RRP) offer four performances in May of David Mamet’s Oleanna. Written in 1992, inspired by the Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill Senate hearings yet well before the #MeToo era, the succinct three-act play detonates the fury of sexual politics through a power struggle between a male college professor and a female student. Twenty-seven years later, the subject could not be more relevant.

According to director Bahman Mahdavi, “As with all great works of art, nothing is simple in this story. The characters are complex and flawed, sincere and manipulative. The playwright has been quoted as saying he wants to make his audience members choose as they squirm and hyperventilate over the onstage fireworks. The goal is ultimately to create debate and discussion.”

There is much in Oleanna that rings frighteningly true: a smug professor, enamored with his own oratory prowess, dismissive of a struggling student; students trying to shut down a class because the professor’s reading list is “questionable,” and, most notably, a shift in the balance of power between the generations and the sexes, using language as their ammunition and tool for winning power over one and another.

Mahdavi explains, “For my directorial debut, I chose a play with only two characters depicting human conflicts and exploring how we act when we are put in a situation where we have no control. The play is not a code for some deeper feelings; it’s not an elaborate attempt to say anything other than what it says. It’s primarily about language –its power, its limitations, and who controls it. David Mamet, one of the greatest American playwrights, has a clipped, precisely-crafted style of diction leaving no room for error nor improvisation. Like a classical music score where everything is in the execution.”

Oleanna features Jon Mack and Rebecca Musgrove. Dody Riggs assists, Miles Keefe is on lights.

Performances are May 17-18, 8pm, at the Williamsville Hall, Dover Road, Williamsville, VT and May 24-25, 8pm at the Hooker-Dunham Theatre, 139 Main St., Brattleboro.

Tickets–$10, $8 for students and seniors–will be available at the door, or order on line now:


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Rock River Players, a 501c3 non-profit theatre collaborative, grows on the inspiration and initiative of those who wish to see the lively arts thrive in the West River Valley.

For more information contact verbatimvt@gmail.com or call 802-348-7156.

Oleanna

Open Auditions for Rock River Players’

WILLIAMSVILLE – The Rock River Players’, Williamsville Hall’s resident theatre group, announces open auditions for Nickel and Dimed by Joan Holden, based on book Nickel and Dimed, on (Not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenriech.

Auditions are
Sunday, March 10, 11:30 AM – 2 PM;
Wednesday, March13, 6 – 8:30 PM;
Sunday, March 17, 11:30 AM – 2 PM
All at the Williamsville Hall, Dover Rad, Williamsville, VT.

The play dramatizes the attempt of an established writer to survive in America while employed in minimum wage jobs. Set in three locations, Florida, Maine and Minnesota, Barbara, the protagonist, works with low-wage employees (mostly women) in a restaurant, a motel, a nursing home, in house cleaning, and at a mall-mart setting. What comes across in the play is the courage, wit, sincerity, and hard work of these real-life characters trying to support themselves and their children. The play is in three parts and has a variety of roles to be filled (some overlapping.): Barbara, protagonist, full role throughout the play; wait staff, cooks, bus boy, boss, customers, editor, boyfriend, daughter, supermarket manager, K-Mart cashier, stock boy, maids, nanny, wealthy woman, boss, Mall-mart associates, interviewer-manager, social worker, and timid man.

Production dates are August 1-4, 2019.

The Rock River Players’ production is open to all who are interested (with or without acting experience) and to non-actors who would like to be part of the production in any way. For more information, contact RRP director, John Moran at johnmoranvt@gmail.com or 802-896-9408

Rock River Players Present Annual Cabaret February 15 & 16

WILLIAMSVILLE The Rock River Players (RRP) present What’s Love Got to Do with It?!–A Valentine’s Cabaret, Friday and Saturday, February 15 and 16 at 7:30 PM at the Williamsville Hall, Dover Rd., Williamsville, Vt.

Cabaret brings to mind a dark and intimate night club and an evening full of songs, laughter, scenes, and surprises. Williamsville Hall will be transformed into just such a place with cafe tables, flickering candles and a tempting array of sweets and savories. In a wry nod to Valentine’s Day, “What’s Love Got to Do with It?! A Valentine’s Cabaret” will feature music and comedy presented by Rock River Players known to area audiences from past RRP productions: Miriam Allbee, Mike Kelly, Stewart McDermet, Bill Lincoln, Annie Landenberger, T. Breeze Verdant, David Roberts, and, from Leland and Gray Union High School’s performing arts programs, Fairen Stark, Caroline Mehner, Ben Kelly, and others.

Admission is $10 and includes savory and sweet snacks. Cabaret goers are asked to bring their own beverages. For reservations text or call 802-451-6283 or write verbatimvt@gmail.com.