'Our Town' in Portola Valley | February 29, 2012 | Almanac | Almanac Online |



Arts & Entertainment - February 29, 2012

'Our Town' in Portola Valley

Actors from the Woodside Community Theatre are joining with the Portola Valley Theatre Conservatory in its production of "Our Town," which runs March 2-4 and March 9-11 at Lane Hall Theatre, 945 Portola Road in Portola Valley. There will be a preview show on March 1.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning drama was written by Thornton Wilder in 1938. "It's a fresh telling that makes the play as crisp and relevant today as it was when Wilder wrote it," says Portola Valley Theatre Conservatory director Cheryl Goodman-Morris.

The cast of 20 includes many local residents.

"In addition, Mark Bowles, one of the producers of the Woodside Community Theatre, and Darlene Batchelder, who has carried a number of leads with WCT, along with her husband, Darrell, are joining us to make a terrific cast for 'Our Town.' Matt Waters, who is a math teacher at Woodside Elementary, plays the lead of George Gibbs," says Ms. Goodman-Morris.

"Our Town" is set in 1901 in the fictional town of Grover's Corners, New Hampshire. It is a love story about George and Emily, the boy and girl next door.

Guiding the audience on their visit to Grover's Corners is the Stage Manager. "He sets every scene and in doing so, gets us to think about things that are real and important by showing us the very things that make life worth living," says Ms. Goodman-Morris.

Although the three-act play is set in 1901, the actors wear modern-day dress. "Our Town" is a love letter from the past that packs a powerful wallop for the present," says Ms. Goodman-Morris.

In addition to Matt Waters of San Carlos playing George Gibbs, other leading players are Claire Jungleib of Portola Valley playing Emily Webb and Joe Khirallah of Redwood City playing the Stage Manager.

Other local residents in the cast are Dorian Dunne, Owen Crevelt, and George Comstock of Portola Valley; Darrell and Darlene Batchelder, Carter Murphy, and Liz Matchett of Woodside; and Geoff Moyer of Ladera. Deborah Rosas of La Honda is costume designer.

Mr. Comstock, a former mayor of Portola Valley, is appearing in his first play at age 88.

Performances of "Our Town" are at 7:30 p.m. on March 1, 2, 3, 9 and 10; and 2 p.m. on March 4 and 11. There will be an opening night champagne toast celebration on March 2.

Visit pvtc-ca.org or call 851-8282, ext. 105, to purchase tickets. Tickets range in price from $10-40.