People's Light & Theatre Presents ABSENCE 10/14-11/8 At The Steinbright Stage

People's Light & Theatre presents the World Premiere of ABSENCE by Wendy Hammond. ABSENCE runs from October 14 - November 8, 2009 on the Steinbright Stage. People's Light founder Ken Marini directs. People's Light & Theatre is located at 39 Conestoga Road, Malvern. For tickets call 610-644-3500 or visit

In ABSENCE, Peter and Mary are a young Mormon couple. He is a brilliant Harvard grad, recruited into the CIA in 1945, which leads him into an increasingly secretive and dangerous life. We follow the rocky landscape of their marriage through 1993, as Peter's career, and the shifting terrain of American foreign policy, leak poison into their marriage.
ABSENCE was developed under the title THE HOLE, which premiered at Purple Rose Theatre in Michigan in 1998. The show has changed significantly since then. "The themes and the characters are the same," says playwright Wendy Hammond, "but the scene structure, dialogue and plot have all been reworked."

Ms. Hammond draws from personal experience in ABSENCE. She was raised a Mormon, and her father worked for The Rand Corporation. "He did a lot of confidential work that he couldn't talk about," says Hammond, "and was often in other countries for reasons we didn't know. I think his Mormon faith and his job created a constant conflict in his life."
With this production People's Light continues its new program for the 6-Play Series called The Scoop: History, Context, and Gossip, a lively discussion before every performance. A member of the cast or artistic staff will discuss the world of the play, how and why it was chosen, as well as how it was cast, designed, and rehearsed. Refreshments will be available in the lobby before The Scoop begins and before the performance. The program will start one hour before the curtain and will take place in the theatre. No reservations are necessary.
ABSENCE previews on Wednesday, October 14th and Thursday, October 15th at 7:30pm. The show opens on Friday, October 16th at 8pm and runs through November 8th. Tickets are now on sale and cost $29-$48, with special discounts available for youth, seniors, and groups of 10 or more.

Subscription tickets are also available. In addition to ABSENCE, shows on the 5-Play series include SNOW WHITE: A Musical Panto (November 18 - January 3, 2010), KING LEAR (March 3 - March 28, 2010), STRETCH, A Fantasia (March 31 - April 25, 2010), and THE SECRET OF SHERLOCK HOLMES (July 7 - August 8, 2010).

Special performances and discounts, in addition to discount meal packages and talk-backs with the artists, are available for groups of 10 or more. For more information or to purchase group tickets, call 610.647.1900, ext. 134 or email

Wendy Hammond (Playwright) has written plays that have been produced by New York City theatres, regional theatres, and in London, Tel Aviv, Milan and Rome. Her work has received many awards. Her plays include Julie Johnson, Family Life: 3 Brutal Comedies, Jersey City, The Ghostman, Wendy in the Wacko Ward, and Road Rage: A Love Story. Her screenplays include Julie Johnson, produced by Shooting Gallery Films, and A Beautiful Life produced by Calla productions. Currently she is working on True Magic: an Historical Fantasy of Joseph Smith, Founder of the Mormon Church, and Suzy, Psychopath. Ms. Hammond has taught playwriting and screenwriting in many universities. She now teaches international writers at TischAsia in Singapore where she lives with her husband and son.

Ken Marini (Director) is a co-founder of PLTC and has directed over 30 productions, including A Tale of Two Cities, The Glass Menagerie, Six Characters in Search of an Author, Humble Boy, Man from Nebraska, The Problem and How We Talk in South Boston for 30Fest, Around the World in 80 Days, Born Yesterday, A Delicate Balance, Dimly Perceived Threats to the System, Sacco and Vanzetti: A Vaudeville, and Sign of the Lizard. Other PLTC credits include The Life of Galileo and an internationally acclaimed production of Louis Lippa's adaptation of Theodore Dreiser's Sister Carrie. He was the Artistic Director of the Cheltenham Center for the Arts for six seasons, directing Kindertransport, The Glass Menagerie and many others. Other credits include How His Bride Came to Abraham at Playwrights' Theatre of New Jersey, When Real Life Begins at Chain Lightning Theatre, Richard III for the National Shakespeare Company, Amadeus, Sleuth and Romeo & Juliet for Hedgerow Theatre, Pete ‘n Keely at Act II Playhouse and All's Well that Ends Well for the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival. He has directed A View from the Bridge in Russia and Psycho Drama in Edinburgh.

Greg Wood (Peter) was last seen at People's Light as Marvin in Falsettos. Other roles at PLTC include Johnny in Misalliance and Tartuffe in Tartuffe. Recent credits include: Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac, and Antony in Antony & Cleopatra for the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Mr. Lockhart in The Seafarer with the Arden Theatre Co., and Senator Hedges in Born Yesterday at the Walnut Street Theatre. Film and television credits include: The Sixth Sense, Signs, The Happening, The Answer Man, Bereavement, Bottleworld, Killing Emmett Young, A Gentlemen's Game, Law & Order, Ed, Hack, and Homicide.

Judith Lightfoot Clarke (Mary) has performed Off-Broadway in numerous productions, including: Three Travelers (Theatre at St. Clement's), The Normal Heart (Public Theatre), Eve-olution (Cherry Lane), Communicating Doors (Variety Arts), SacrifIce To Eros (York). GMHC/Anyone Can Whistle Benefit/Carnegie Hall. Regional: The Old Globe (Hayfever), Shakespeare Theatre of NJ (R&J), Alley (Misalliance), Wilma (Cloud 9), Cincinnati Playhouse (Closer), Indiana Rep (Blithe Spirit), Syracuse Stage (Three Tall Women), Capital Rep (Nora, Medea in Jerusalem), Merrimack Rep (The Homecoming, Three Days of Rain) and Soho Rep (Measure for Measure) Television includes: Law & Order, As the World Turns, What Goes On (recurring). Graduate of The College of William & Mary in Virginia.

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