Palm Beach Dramaworks to Present John Steinbeck's OF MICE AND MEN, Begin. 10/11

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Palm Beach Dramaworks to Present John Steinbeck's OF MICE AND MEN, Begin. 10/11

Of Mice and Men, a searing work by John Steinbeck about friendship and responsibility set against the backdrop of the Great Depression, launches Palm Beach Dramaworks' 2013-2014 season on Friday, October 11 (8pm) at the Don & Ann Brown Theatre (201 Clematis Street). Performances continue through November 10, with specially priced previews on October 9 and 10.

Set in Steinbeck's hometown of Salinas, California, Of Mice and Men is the story of George and Lennie, two drifters who dream of a better life. George takes care of and protects sweet but simple-minded Lennie, who is unaware of his own brute strength. After Lennie unintentionally commits a terrible act, George must determine his friend's fate. The play is inspired by Steinbeck's days as a manual laborer; Lennie is based on a real person.

Palm Beach Dramaworks' production is directed by J. Barry Lewis and features John Leonard Thompson(George), Brendan Titley (Lennie), Paul Bodie, Cliff Burgess, Frank Converse, Dennis Creaghan, Betsy Graver, Christopher Halladay, Wayne Steadman, and Ricky Waugh. Scenic design is by Michael Amico, costume design by Leslye Menshouse, lighting design byJohn Hall, and sound design by Matt Corey.

The original production of Of Mice and Men was directed by George S. Kaufman, and opened on Broadway in November, 1937. The novel on which the play was based was published earlier that year, and quickly became a best seller. Steinbeck had conceived of the book as an experiment - "a play to be read," he called it - and constructed it with scenes, which is why he was able to adapt it so quickly for the stage.

Steinbeck (1902-1968) was one of the most socially and politically conscious American writers of the twentieth century, and his works reflect his concerns for the less fortunate, the downtrodden, the forgotten. He received the 1940 Pulitzer Prize for fiction for his most critically acclaimed novel, "The Grapes of Wrath," about the plight of the Joad family during the Great Depression. Among his other well-known books are "Tortilla Flat," "Cannery Row," and "East of Eden." Steinbeck was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962.

Palm Beach Dramaworks is a non-profit, professional theatre and is a member of the Theatre Communications Group, the South Florida Theatre League, Southeastern Theatre Conference, Florida Professional Theatres Association, Florida Theatre Conference, and the Palm Beach County Cultural Council. For fourteen years, West Palm Beach's only professional, multi-award-winning resident theatre has brought to the Palm Beaches a distinguished roster of plays under the guidance of Producing Artistic Director William Hayes.

The performance schedule is as follows: Evening performances are Wednesday through Saturday at 8PM and Sunday at 7PM. Matinee performances are on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday at 2PM. Individual tickets are $60 for all performances. Preview performances are $52 and Opening Night tickets are $75. Student tickets are available for $10. Group rates for 20 or more and discounted season subscriptions are also available.

The Don & Ann Brown Theatre is located in the heart of downtown West Palm Beach, at 201 Clematis Street. For ticket information contact the box office at (561) 514-4042, open Monday from 10AM to 5PM, Tuesday through Saturday from 10AM to 6PM, and Sunday from 11AM to 5PM, or visit www.palmbeachdramaworks.org

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