Award-winning playwright and director Jayne Decker presents two new plays on April 26

first_imgFARMINGTON – Staged performance readings from two original plays by award-winning playwright and director Jayne Decker will be presented on Friday, April 26 at the University of Maine at Farmington’s Alumni Theater, featuring a number of UMF graduates, former actors and crew members from as far away as Chicago, Ill.Uninvited, a one-act play about a hungry man who enters a house to escape the rain and confronts the woman who comes home, will begin at 7 p.m. BUTTER, set in a small rural town in the 1970s, a time before parents had cell phones and kids still walked to the corner store alone, will follow at 7:30 p.m. Both performances are free and open to the public. After BUTTER, there will be a post-play reception with playwright and actors.“My new plays will be presented in a staged performance reading with some intensive rehearsals,” Decker said. “Because most of the actors are traveling a distance to get here, we’ve had many discussions about the characters prior to rehearsals early in the workshop process.”For Decker, a significant part of the event is bringing actors that have previous experience with Decker back to work with some of her current students. Mandi Favreau and Jesse Manson worked together years ago and were both part of other workshop productions for some of Decker’s earlier work. Decker said that she was “thrilled” to have them back on the Alumni stage.Favreau, class of 2001, and fellow alum Austin Hayes, class of 2015, both hold theater director positions at Messalonski High School and have helped their students connect to the theatre arts program at UMF.“The Theatre UMF alumni are significant in so many ways,” said Decker. “They continue to be connected to the campus through their love for theatre and memories of performing in this particular place.”Other returning alumni include Manson, class of 2003, of Chicago, Ill.; Zack Peercy, class of 2017, also of Chicago; Nathan Sylvester, class of 2015, of Portland. Current students involved in the performance include Hailey Craig, of Trenton; and Steffon Gales, of Roxbury, Mass.; and the voice of 10-year-old Adelaide Minton.Nicole R. Clark, class of 2015, is returning to the stage manager’s booth to work with current stage manager Hope Lash (Waldoboro.) Dan “Tree” Robbins is also returning to the UMF stage for this performance. Tree is well known for his roles in Decker’s plays over the years, and he has also been involved as a dialect coach for UMF Theatre productions.The event coincides with a fundraising campaign to improve areas in the existing theatre space to enhance the learning environment for UMF students and help bring the appearance of Alumni Theatre in line with the quality of the performances staged in this historic venue.Decker has directed numerous productions at UMF Alumni Theater. Her production, “Coyote on a Fence,” was awarded a Moss Hart Memorial Award by the New England Theatre Conference—New England’s oldest and largest regional theatre association. Her other directorial work includes Martin McDonagh’s “The Cripple of Inishmaan,” George Brant’s “Elephant’s Graveyard,” the musicals “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Oliver!” and productions of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”She has also presented workshop productions of her original plays “Good Medicine;” “Stars Falling,” winner of the 2002 Maine Playwriting Award; “Jelly Moonshine;” and “Songbird,” a touring play about the Iraq War. “Cracked Shells,” an original play by Decker about domestic violence, was commissioned by Franklin County Network’s Peace in Our Families and was featured again at the 2009 Maine Women’s Studies Conference.This Theatre UMF production is sponsored by the UMF Division of the Arts.Please note that BUTTER contains adult content and language.last_img read more