BWW Interviews: Pulitzer Prize-Winning RABBIT HOLE Opens at Players Guild of Dearborn, 3/7

BWW Interviews: Pulitzer Prize-Winning RABBIT HOLE Opens at Players Guild of Dearborn, 3/7

David Lindsay-Abaire's "Rabbit Hole" opens a three-weekend run March 7 at the Players Guild of Dearborn, 21730 Madison in Dearborn. For tickets or more information call 313-561-TKTS or go to

"Rabbit Hole" received five Tony Award nominations in 2006, including Best Play, and won a Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play Tony for Cynthia Nixon.

Director Lindel Salow said the show, the recipient of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, explores how family members deal with loss, with comic moments interspersed within the drama.

The cast includes Sarah Zakaria of Dearborn as Becca, Jeff Flannery of Southgate as Howie, Kori Bielaniec of Westland as Izzy, Roberta Shortt of Livonia as Nat and Kevin Talanges of Dearborn as Jason.

Salow, who was eager to direct a relatively new play, said getting a cast to present grief without it becoming overbearing presents a challenge.

"When you are talking about grief, it frightens people, because it is an emotion we don't like to bear, especially in front of other people," Salow said.

Bielaniec, who plays Izzy, an irresponsible, single and pregnant younger sister, said the show is something to which audiences can relate.

"There are plenty of funny moments," Bielaniec said. "Izzy provides some of them. She is a brassy broad, a little more rough around the edges. I usually play giggly and bubbly and fun."

Zakaria, who plays Becca, Izzy's steady, responsible older sister, said the show makes people think.

"There are tender moments and snappy comebacks," Zakaria said. "Families know each other, and they make fun of each other and it can be kind of funny at times."

Flannery, who plays Howie, Becca's husband, said he was attracted to the role of because it demanded variations and emotions he said he has never had to portray before.

"It's very thoughtful, and it is very thought-inspiring," Flannery said. "It's a very intelligent script. It is not all spelled out for you, so you have to pay attention."

Talanges, who plays Jason, said he draws on emotion from times when he has hurt people, which he finds challenging.

"It is a very sweet story, with some heartbreak in it," Talanges said. "I have dealt with grief in life, but not this deep before, and hurting an entire family is different from hurting one person."

Assistant director Shardai Davis said the show's realism is appealing.

"You will go through the journey with the characters," Davis said. "Audiences should feel free to laugh at the moments that are funny. They have a lot of good one-liners that lighten up all of the drama in the play."

Info provided by PGD.

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BWW Interviews: Pulitzer Prize-Winning RABBIT HOLE Opens at Players Guild of Dearborn, 3/7
Howie, played by Jeff Flannery (left) of Southgate confronts Jason, played by Kevin Talanges (right) of Dearborn, while Becca, played by Sarah Zakaria (second from left) of Dearborn watches as they rehearse a scene from David Lindsay-Abaire's Rabbit Hole

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Anton Anderssen Dr. Anton Anderssen is a cultural anthropologist, specializing in "high culture." Visit his web page at Anton is a member of several high IQ societies, including Mensa, Triple 9, ISPE and Prometheus. He has seasonal residency on the Italian Riviera, The Alps, Hawaii, Michigan and elsewhere world-wide covering cultural events. Dr. Anderssen's articles are included in the United States Library of Congress as part of their Official Performing Arts Historical Web Archives.

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