Acorn Productions' THE DYBBUK OF PARK SLOPE to Run 12/6-29
Acorn Productions, a non-profit theater company based in the Dana Warp Mill in downtown Westbrook, produces the company's fourth Jewish-themed holiday production this December in the Acorn Studio Theater. Acorn's founder and Board member Michael Levine wrote the script, which takes a humorous look at a very common dilemma faced by modern couples: how to reconcile a fast-paced twenty-first century life with spiritual needs. Charlene and David lead a fast-paced urban lifestyle that leaves Little Room for their spiritual life. While Charlene and her mother busy themselves planning a wedding right out of "Modern Bride" magazine, David decides to meet with a rabbi to discover his roots. An unexpected encounter with a restless spirit helps them discover what lies within their souls.
Performances of "The Dybbuk of Park Slope" take place Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30pm, and Sundays at 2pm from December 6th to December 29th. Tickets cost $15 for adults and $12 for students and seniors, and they may be purchased on-line at www.acorn-productions.org or by calling Acorn at 854-0065.
There will also be a special benefit performance on Sunday, December 22nd at 6pm replacing the matinee on that day at the Congregation Bet Ha'am, 81 Westbrook St., So. Portland. Tickets to this special benefit are $15 and can also be purchased online or by calling Acorn. All proceeds to benefit Congregation Bet Ha'am and Acorn Productions.
In his new script, playwright Michael Levine draws on Jewish folklore to spin a tale of a dybbuk, a soul with unfinished business on this earth, who helps a couple come to terms with their heritage through their choices around their wedding ceremony. Along the way, audiences will encounter a few unexpected surprises in a heart-warming production full of comedy and familiar characters. This is the second year in a row Levine premieres one of his original full-length plays at the company he founded sixteen years ago. Levine, who is Jewish, wrote the play as a result of his fascination with rituals and the marriage traditions of his faith. "I have always loved Jewish folklore, and the dybbuk is a classic creature that has spawned many stories new and old." Levine said, "It seemed a perfect vehicle to examine issues of what it means to be a younger generation Jew in contemporary America." This year's holiday show not only tackles concerns about how to remain connected to one's religious and cultural roots in the middle of our assimilated world, but also tackles an age-old issue of how to balance the competing needs of mother and daughter when planning a wedding.
The artistic staff includes Guest Director Al D'Andrea from Snowlion Repertory Theater. D'Andrea is a former co-founder of New York's Third Step Theatre Company and Los Angeles' WordzWorth Productions and this is his first time directing at Acorn. Set Designer is Craig Robinson, a regular designer from Portland's Good Theater, and Costume Designer Desiray Roy. This holiday tale features the talents of Acorn regulars Beth Chasse, HAl Cohen, David Handwerker, Pat Mew, as well as guest artists Christopher Davis and Erika Thompson.
Acorn Productions' mission is to invigorate the community of performing artists in Southern Maine. Acorn seeks to nurture new performance pieces, develop artist collaborations, train new talent, and make the arts accessible to a wide spectrum of the general public. Acorn accomplishes these goals by mounting annual festivals that are open to a variety of artists as well as professional performances by local actors in both traditional and non-traditional venues. Ticket prices for these performances are maintained at an affordable level in order to lower economic barriers for potential audience members. Acorn also offers educational programs, including acting classes and workshops, and acts as an umbrella 501(c)3 organization for grassroots organizations or individual artists seeking to become more active members of the performing arts community.