BY RUTH RICE
The characters in this drama are as fragile as glass.
Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie” will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday in Alumni Hall on the campus of Mount Aloysius College, Cresson.
The classic play will be the second production for director Nathan Magee, who is in his first semester on the Mount Aloysius College staff.
“I chose the entire season with some college input, based on the students I had and what they had done,” Magee said.
“I thought this play was applicable and doable. All the plays I picked have a small cast.”
“The Glass Menagerie,” a four-character memory play by Williams, is a play Magee has wanted to direct for a long time.
“It’s a good play, challenging to the students and the audience,” Magee said.
“If you want quality literature, there’s not much higher than Tennessee Williams. It’s a beautiful play, and there are few who won’t be touched by the story.”
The play is set in 1937 in the living room of a small St. Louis apartment.
“The scenery is more impressionistic, and we tried to make the costumes as accurate to the time period as possible,” Magee said.
“This play has to have the correct time period because there are some references. You can’t change it around. It’s autobiographical, based on Williams’ life. Literature and history buffs will like it a lot.”
Magee chose his cast at the beginning of October, with rehearsals off and on at first and more intense in the past few weeks.
At first glance, he said, the students didn’t understand how the older play relates to today’s world, but with a family in tough economic times not knowing how they will make it, he believes the play’s plot is still relatable nearly 70 years after it was written.
Kolby Wasnick of Summerhill will play Amanda Wingfield, a faded Southern belle abandoned by her husband who is trying to raise her two children under harsh financial conditions.
Tim Michrina of Portage will play Amanda’s son, Tom, the narrator and protagonist of the play who works at a shoe warehouse to support his family and aspires to be a poet.
Pam Young of Gaithersburg, Md., will play Amanda’s daughter, Laura, who suffers from a limp and an inferiority complex that has caused her to be isolated from the outside world, creating her own world symbolized by her collection of glass figurines.
Todd Craig of Portage will play Jim, Laura’s gentleman caller, an old high school acquaintance.
The play was reworked from one of Williams’ short stories, “Portrait of a Girl in Glass,” which was published in 1948.
While there is no controversial subject matter in the play, Magee said there are in-depth issues and does not recommend it for anyone younger than age 10.
What: Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie.”
When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.
Where: Alumni Hall, Mount Aloysius College, Cresson.
Tickets: $5 for adults at the door. Students admitted free.
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