Photo Flash: Meet the Cast of AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY, Opening Tonight at Actors' NET
Tracy Letts' Pulitzer Prize winning play August: Osage County dominates the Heritage Center stage in Morrisville for a month-long run, promising to shine light on this acclaimed tragi-comedy. Performing weekends tonight, February 28 - March 23, August: Osage County is the memorable tale of the dysfunctional Weston family as they assemble during a family crisis. They bring with them all the excess baggage of past grudges and grievances, airing all their dirty laundry amid barbs and often devastatingly funny, snide comments. Scroll down for a first look at the cast!
Despite movie mega-stars, the recently released film version of Letts' play garnered almost as much negative criticism as praise. "Scripts often work best in the medium in which they were originally conceived," explained NET General Manager Joe Doyle. "When Hollywood takes a tale meant for the stage and expands it to the big screen, the intimacy and nuance are often lost. Our Heritage Center Theatre is the perfect venue for presenting this work. It's 'fly on the wall theatre': our audiences feel as if they're present during a real family clash. And director Delarme Landes has assembled an amazing cast to bring this ensemble show to life."
Landes, a resident of Doylestown, describes the show as "a prickly piece of theater --equal parts profane and profound, ugly and beautiful, tragic and funny. The language and themes are brutally, unflinchingly honest. The things it has to say about us -- as individuals, partners, parents, lovers, humans -- are not always pleasant to contemplate."
"The spectacle of smart people behaving badly is often entertaining and amusing, if not outright hilarious," Landes observes, "but Mr. Letts elevates this theater of cruelty to something more elegant and beautiful than its language and tone might suggest ... Yet, even as Mr. Letts presses some very sore points, he offers a ray of hope, a suggestion that things could be different. Some of these damaged people achieve a kind of happiness, maybe even peace."
August: Osage County stars Susan Blair of Philadelphia as Violet Weston, the razor-tongued, pill-popping family matriarch; Giz Coughlin of Doylestown as Barbara Fordham, the strong-willed eldest daughter; Cathy Liebars of Langhorne as Ivy, the mousy daughter with an unexpected secret relationship; and Maryalice Rubins-Topoleski of Langhorne as Karen, the self-help platitude-spouting daughter who arrives late to the gathering with her oily businessman fiancé.
The cast also includes (alphabetically) Ken Ammerman of Morrisville; James Banar of Newtown; Matthew Cassidy of Morrisville; Linda Cunningham and Alexa Gutter of Yardley; Amanda Hinkle of Levittown; Marco Newton of Yardley; Tim Tolen of Doylestown and Wren Workman of Morrisville. Cat Miller of Bristol is the show's producer, assistant director, costume coordinator and fight choreographer. Set design is by James, Joanne and Brielle Cordingley of Lawrenceville, NJ; Maryalice Rubins-Topoleski handles the lighting design.
Show times all four weeks are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Admission is $20 for adults, $17 for seniors 62 and up, $15 for WHYY card members, and $10 for children age 12 and younger. Parental discretion strongly advised due to adult language and themes. To reserve, phone 215-295-3694 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The company's website is www.actorsnetbucks.org; its Facebook page is at www.facebook.com/theactorsnet and the Twitter name is @actorsnet.
The Heritage Center Theatre is located at 635 N. Delmorr Avenue (Route 32), Morrisville, near the Calhoun Street Bridge. August: Osage County is presented through special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc.