Community College of Aurora Presents ALMOST, MAINE, Now thru 3/22
Community College of Aurora's staging of Almost, Maine is a warm, funny and candid glimpse into nine disparate couples ranging from the "butterflies" stage of first attraction to long-term pairs standing the test of time.
Director Stacey D'Angelo called the show a "great little date night," describing the tone of the play "very funny, sweet and quirky."
Almost, Maine provides a stark contrast from some recent college productions - Glimpses, Eurydice and The Little Prince -- that often ventured into heavy, raw, dark, and real material covering such aspects as sadness and loss. This production is lighthearted, featuring 18 student actors portraying the couples at these various stages within their relationships.
"This isn't about bells and whistles, ensembles, dances or special effects," D'Angelo said. "It's all in the acting chops and creating comedy and touching moments through the acting and writing."
All of the couples featured in this adaptation of John Cariani's work find themselves at a turning point or magical moment in their relationships at exactly the same time: 9 p.m. on a Friday, as the Aurora Borealis appears in the night sky in northern Maine.
"Anyone who's been in a relationship with someone else, whether it be a romantic relationship, or an intimate, close friendship is going to relate to those tender, awkward and comical, absurd moments," D'Angelo said. "Things that come out of the characters' mouths you have said once upon a time. And it gives you chance to laugh at the moments that have been challenging in your relationship. It also gives you a chance to reminisce about the early days. It just brings you back. And it's really, really funny."
There is a down-to-earth feel to the characters portrayed in "Almost, Maine" but "they're not simple by any means," D'Angelo added.
The core message in featuring different ages, definitions of couples, and stages of connection is to define what relationships mean and resemble in this day and age. There are hearts broken and egos bruised, so not everyone escapes free and clear.
Still, that's also part of the humor. "You just need a good laugh sometimes," D'Angelo said.
Another tweak relating to this particular production is that the admission price has been waived for all CCA students with valid identification. Only the first 30 in attendance previously received free tickets for the last several plays held at the Larry D. Carter Theater on the college's CentreTech campus.
"We want more students to come out, knowing they have a guaranteed seat," D'Angelo said.
The show runs 7:30 p.m. nightly tonight, March 13-15 and March 20-22. General admission is $10; $7 for non-CCA students and seniors. Admission is free for CCA students with valid identification. For more information and to purchase advance tickets, please visit www.ccaurora.edu/almostmaine or call 303-340-7529.