The cast of “Almost, Maine” has a lot of love to go around. They love each other like a family, they love the play they’re in, and the stories they’re acting out are all about love.
“[The play’s] a series of nine vignettes, about 10 minutes each,” said Director Dulcie Willis. “There’s two to three people in each scene, all taking place in the same town at the same time.”
And according to Willis, they’re all about love.
“They’re about all different kinds of love,” she explained. “Falling in love, falling out of love, discovering love, being surprised by love.”
The play, written for 19 actors, is performed by four.
“We have four really amazing young actors. They do a good job of making the characters very different,” said Willis.
Having rehearsed together since mid-October, the actors have all become very close.
“With the four of us we create such a strong level of intimacy that it is natural, it’s completely effortless,” said actor Cary Klataske.
“The show shows every piece of the love cycle,” he said. “Everyone experiences affection and love and everyone can relate to at least one scene if not all of them, which is why it’s so easy for us to get into character.”
“It’s a very accessible show,” said Willis.
Actor Jessica Lipman confirmed, “Theres so many different degrees of love in this show. There’s she’s never done it before and there’s 11 years of love. No matter what stage you’re in, you can relate.”
“I’ve seen this show four times, and they all have some threads that tie them together,” said actor Heather Johnson, “but I would say that John Cariani’s writing is so beautiful that it’s interesting to see the characters played differently. The characters are so real, and as long as the actors are open then it is a great show.”
Bas Bleu put on this performance last year as well, but that doesn’t mean it won’t appeal to people who attended then.
“They’re two completely different shows,” said another actor, Dan Tschirhart, referring to the previous year’s performance. “It seems like every actor that takes on these scenes takes it in their own way. There’s a lot of differences that you wouldn’t think there would be.”
The actors each bring something to the table and to their presentation of the five or so characters they each play.
“I brought my own interest and enthusiasm in exploring different relationships and how people work. That’s a passion of mine, knowing how people tick,” said Klataske.
“I really liked Steve because he has an innocent sweetness to him,” said Tschirhart about one of the characters he plays. Of another, he said, “I really like Dave because he does everything he possibly can, I like his tenacity.”
All four actors agree unanimously that this is the most fun of a show they have been in.
Learn more at www.basbleu.org