LEWISTON — Revisiting the past changes the future when a high school reunion unexpectedly turns an old classmate into a new love. Don’t miss the Maine premiere of the charming and thought-provoking romantic comedy “The Midvale High School 50th Reunion”, playing May 4-13, at The Public Theatre in Lewison.
As Bettina, the class valedictorian, and Tom, an unpopular loner, weave their way through the party, their paths cross, and a new road for both of them appears as they fill in the blanks in each other’s lives. Included in the plot is a series of flashbacks woven through the real time of their high school reunion. Watching an ambitious young Bettina pursue a career in science only to collide with a “glass ceiling”, or seeing an earnest young Tom struggling to articulate his emotional life, one can’t help but wonder how many things have and haven’t changed in fifty years.
Director Christopher Schario says, “This play is an unsentimental look at the roads we do and don’t take in our lives, and a hopeful reminder that it’s never too late to make new choices, or even to fall in love”. Schario also notes that, “having such a delightful, smart and desirable older women as a central character in the play, definitely makes this a great show to bring your mom to for Mother’s Day”.
Voted the “Best theatre in Maine” five years in a row by Down East Magazine, The Public Theatre brings the best talent from Broadway and beyond to Lewiston. All four of the actors are New York based professionals. The role of Bettina will be played by Joyce Cohen. Joyce has appeared on television, Broadway, Off-Broadway, and film, with her most recognizable role in the Disney movie High School Musical. The role of Tom, her former classmate, will be played by Mel Shrawder. Mel recently completed a two-year tour of West Side Story throughout Europe. His television and film work include appearances on Law and Order, Miami Vice and Critical Condition with Richard Pryor. The role of Young Bettina, etc. will be played by Nisi Sturgis. Aside from her acting work in New York and with numerous regional theatres, Nisi appeared for 5 seasons as June Thompson on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. The role of Young Tom, etc. will be played by Torsten Hillhouse. Torsten has extensive experience in New York and regional theatres and was seen last season at The Public Theatre in Ripcord.
The Public Theatre’s annual silent auction will be held in the lobby during the run of the production. The Opening-Night Brew Ha Ha performance featuring a free pre-show beer sampling hosted by Baxter Brewing will start at 6:30 p.m. Friday, May 4, in the theater’s lobby. The Wine-Down Thursday performance, featuring a free pre-show wine sampling hosted by Rails Restaurant, will start at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 10. A free post-show discussion featuring the cast and director will directly follow the Sunday, May 6, performance.
The Midvale High School 50th Reunion runs May 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, with a Saturday matinee at 3 p.m. May 12. Tickets are $20 for adults and $5 for anyone 18 and under. For tickets, call 782-3200 or visit www.thepublictheatre.org.