Tuesday, May 10, 2016

FAMILY ONSTAGE AND OFF IN THE BERGEN COUNTY PLAYERS PRODUCTION OF ARTHUR MILLER'S “A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE”

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A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE
by Arthur Miller

WHEN: through May 22; Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm, and Sundays at 2 pm
WHERE:
Little Firehouse Theatre at 298 Kinderkamack Road in Oradell
TICKETS:  $21 for Friday/Saturday performances and $17 for Sunday matinees, and can be purchased online at www.bcplayers.org, by calling 201-261-4200 or by visiting the box office at 298 Kinderkamack Road in Oradell during regular box office hours. Visa, Master Card, and American Express are accepted.
Those interested in Group Sales of 20 or more tickets can email groups@bcplayers.org or call the main number and press #6.

The play, first mounted in 1956, has been an award-winner for best revival of a play here and in London in 1998, 2010 and just last year. [Above: (front, l-r) Rich Ciero, Anthony Ventola, Director Jackie McElroy-Poquette, Ted Odell, Meg Renton, Andrew Lionetti, Sarah Mason and (rear, l-r) Thomas Hoesly and David Luke. Photo by Michael Smith]

It’s the story of Brooklyn longshoreman Eddie Carbone (Andrew Lionetti of Westwood) and his personal turmoil as he grapples with his attraction to, some might say obsession with, his orphaned young niece Catherine (Sarah Mason of North Caldwell) who lives with him and his wife, Beatrice (Meg Renton of Ringwood). Taking a cue from ancient Greek drama, Miller creates the character of Mr. Alfieri (Ted Odell of Warwick, NY), a lawyer who serves as an on-stage narrator. The play gains momentum as Eddie’s initially fatherly feelings toward Catherine change. Tension mounts with the arrival of her cousins Marco (Anthony Ventola of Oradell) and Rodolpho (Thomas Hoesly of Wyckoff), who are illegal immigrants from Italy, especially when Rodolpho begin dating Catherine without Eddie’s permission. Others in the talented cast include Mike (Richard Field of Cliffside Park), Louis (Ron Siclari of Oradell), and the Immigration Officers (David Luke of Mahwah and Richard Ciero of Oradell).

At the heart of the play is the theme of justice. Standard, by-the-book American justice comes face-to-face with the old-fashioned Italian “we’ll handle it ourselves” brand. According to Director McElroy-Poquette, audiences will be made to both think and feel and are likely to leave the theater with their heads spinning.

The family connection off-stage is between veteran director Jackie McElroy-Poquette and the leading actor, Andrew Lionetti, who is her son-in law. (Her husband, Ray Poquette, is also there behind the scenes as the lighting designer.) According to Jackie, and contrary to any pre-conceptions we all share about mothers-in-law, their working relationship couldn’t be better. “Of course,” she says, “it helps that Andrew is as professional an actor as you’ll find in any community theater production.”

In addition to director McElroy-Poquette, the production team includes Rhea Smith (Producer, Set Décor and Program Notes), Margie McDonough (Assistant to the Director), Paul Reitnauer III (Stage Manager), Richard Field, David Luke, Richard Ciero and Ron Siclari (Crew), Michael Smith (Set Designer and Construction), Robin Johnson (Scenic Painting), Marisa Dolkart and Michelle Roth (Costumes), Joe Halajian (Sound Design), Ray Poquette (Lighting Design), Sandra Conklin and Marisa Dolkart (Lighting Operation) Rachel Alt (Props), James Dolan (Sound Operation), Michael Smith (Photography), and Ed Gross (Publicity).

SPECIAL SEATING:

  • Row K, Seats #1 and #2 are held to accommodate people with disabilities. They can be purchased by calling the box office at 201-261-4200. These seats will be released for public sale two weeks prior to performance.
  • Advance discount tickets for students age 25 and under with proper ID are available for $14 by phone or walk-up only, and student rush seats can be purchased for $5 (cash only) starting 30 minutes before curtain at every performance, pending seat availability. There is a limit of one rush ticket per student.

Parking is free at the Park Avenue municipal lot, across the street, one-half block north of the theater.

The Bergen County Players has grown tremendously from its roots as a small community theater when it was founded in 1932; today, nearly 300 volunteer members, working on and off stage, make possible the nine productions presented each season. The remaining Second Stage productions is An Evening of One Act Plays (June 4th and 5th).

Further information can be found at www.bcplayers.org.