The Rainmaker

Show Sponsor

Bea and Bayard Waring

July 14 – August 5

The Rainmaker

by N. Richard Nash | Directed by Robert Walsh°

About the Play

Set in a time of a paralyzing drought in Depression-era America, The Rainmaker tells the story of a pivotal hot summer day in the life of spinsterish Lizzie Curry, whose father and two brothers are worried as much about her marriage prospects as they are about their dying cattle. Enter Starbuck, the consummate con man, who promises to solve all their problems, for a fee. The Rainmaker is a captivating classic, guaranteed to break your heart and then fill it with hope.

The Rainmaker was written by N. Richard Nash in the early 1950s. It premiered on October 28, 1954, at the Cort Theatre in New York City, and ran for 125 performances.

Run Time: 2 hrs 20 mins (including intermission)

This production makes brief use of a strobe light & an herbal cigar.

Saturday, July 22
immediately following the 2pm matinee

Costume Design from Conception to Stage
Learn how designers contribute to the story of the play & the vision of the director.

A Conversation with Costume Designers Linda Ross and Chelsea Kerl for a behind-the-scenes look at designing, building, and procuring costumes for period and contemporary plays. How to manage multiple costumes, fast changes and, often, incredible wear and tear on a very modest budget.

Sunday, July 23 & July 30
immediately following the 2pm matinee

While tickets to talkbacks & the Making Theater Series are not required, seating is limited and preference will be given to those who have purchased tickets to the preceding performance.

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David DeBeck

David DeBeck* (H. C. Curry)
David DeBeck is thrilled to be working in a production at Gloucester Stage and with Robert Walsh, for the first time. He recently played Ian in The Other Place at the Nora Theatre, Cambridge, MA. Favorite theater credits include, Strange Snow at Theatreworks, Hartford; Dinner With Friends, The Lonesome West and Hamlet, at The Virginia Stage Company; Hosanna, both at The Walnut Street Theatre (Phila, PA.) and The Actor’s Theater, Off B’way.

David plays Sargent Shriver in the soon to be released movie, Chappaquiddick (John Curran). Other film roles include, Roger Wheeler, Black Mass (Scott Cooper) and Paul Hansen, The Company Men (John Wells). Favorite television credits include guest starring roles in Olive Kitteridge (HBO), Brotherhood (Showtime), Law & Order, Criminal Intent and Special Victims Unit.

David is associated with the Drama Desk Award winning Off-Off B’way company, the Barrow Group.

Joe Short* (Noah Curry)

Joe Short

Joe is a professional actor, teacher, and theatre technician.

Recent acting roles include Brutus in Julius Caesar and Richard in The Lover for Bridge Rep of Boston; George Tesman in Hedda Gabler, Man #3 in The Big Meal, Ray Dooley in The Beauty Queen of Leenane, William Tyndale/George Villiers in Anne Boleyn, Lars in Festen and Guildenstern/Francisco in Hamlet at the Gamm Theatre; Henry in Rich Girl at the Lyric Stage; Tom in These Shining Lives at Stoneham Theatre; Gordon in Strange Interlude at Shakespeare Theatre of DC; Lord Dumaine in All’s Well That Ends Well at Commonwealth Shakespeare Company; Balthasar in The Merchant of Venice at Public Theatre/New York Shakespeare Festival; Bob Cratchit in A Christmas Carol at Trinity Rep; Andrew Jackson in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and Padraic in The Lieutenant of Inishmore at The Wilbury Theatre Group.

Joe is a founding artistic associate of Bridge Rep of Boston and Providence’s The Wilbury Theatre Group. He is an adjunct instructor of acting, voice, and movement at the University of Rhode Island. Directing credits include columbinus at URI, The Winter’s Tale at RIC, and Marie Antoinette:The Color of Flesh at Providence College. His technical theatre work includes production technician at Harvard University, as well as four seasons as production manager for Gloucester Stage. Joe is an M.F.A. graduate of the Brown/Trinity Rep Consortium and earned a B.F.A. at the University of Rhode Island.

Sean McCoy

Sean McCoy (Jim Curry)
Sean McCoy is excited to be making his post graduate debut in Gloucester Stage Company’s production of the The Rainmaker. A recent graduate of Boston University’s BFA Acting Class of 2017, Sean’s previous university credits include Priam in Tiger at the Gates, Yasha in The Cherry Orchard, Roelf Visagie in The Train Driver, and Carthage Killbride in By the Bog of Cats. Hailing from Washington D.C, Sean has performed with Shakespeare Theatre Company, Ford’s Theater, and Roundhouse Theatre.

Aside from theatre, Sean just finished a half marathon in June at Yellowstone National Park. Sean would like to thank his family, his girlfriend and his friends for their endless support. Please visit seancmccoy.com for more.

Jessica Bates

Jessica Bates* (Lizzie Curry)
Jessica is thrilled to be performing at Gloucester Stage. Originally from Washington D.C., she is an actress, teacher and songwriter now living in California. Over her career, she has worked in many incredible theaters including; Milwaukee Rep, The Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre, The Hangar Theatre, The Idaho Shakespeare Festival, The Riverside Theatre, The Women’s Project, Lincoln Center Theatre, New York Theatre Workshop, The National Shakespeare Company, The Acting Company, Capital Stage, The Aurora Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, SF Playhouse, and Brava Theatre. Abroad, she performed at the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival, The Edinburgh Festival, and the London Fringe Festival. She produced an original show of her own music in New York called Love in the Time of Unemployment. TV; May Peace Prevail on Earth (CBS), Love Kills (Discovery ID). Films include: The Far Near Shore (soon to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival). Special thanks to my parents for supporting me on this wild ride!

Dave Rich

Dave Rich (File)
Dave Rich is thrilled to make his Gloucester Stage debut. Other theater credits in the Cape Ann area include Becky Shaw, Leading Ladies, and An Inspector Calls with the Cape Ann Theatre Collaborative and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged and The Boor with the Cape Ann Shakespeare Troupe. Additional theatre credits include Francis Hardy in Faith Healer and Pato in The Beauty Queen of Leenane with Newton Nomadic Theatre Company, Macbeth in MacBeth with FUDGE Theatre Company (best actor IRNE nomination 2014 ), Guy in God’s Ear with the Actors’ Shakespeare Project (IRNE and Eliot Norton Awards for best Boston theater production 2015), as well as Roy Cohn in Angels in America, John Proctor in The Crucible, Joseph Garcin in No Exit, Gordon in Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Reed McAllister in Shooting Star and Caliban in The Tempest, with the Salem Theatre Company. He remains ever grateful to Jennifer for all of her love and support.

Norman Jones (Sheriff Thomas)

Norm Jones

Norm is delighted to return to Gloucester Stage to perform in The Rainmaker under the direction of Bob Walsh.  Norm previously appeared as Badger in the Gloucester Stage production of The Wind in the Willows.  Other favorite roles include Salter in A Number, Harold in Orphans, Duke Vincentio in Measure for Measure and Nathaniel Hawthorne in Inspired, a script he created based on the life of the Salem author.

Norm is a Professor of Theatre Arts at Gordon College where he has directed forty-nine productions over the past thirty-two years.

Brian Homer* (Bill Starbuck)

Brian Homer

Brian Homer is overjoyed to be performing for the first time at Gloucester Stage. A native Bostonian who now lives & works as an actor in NYC. He has enjoyed performing in numerous Off-Broadway productions, including Theater for a New Audience’s repertory production of Richard II/Richard III, Seattle Repertory Theater’s premiere of Rebecca Gilman’s Spinning Into Butter, and the New Repertory Theater’s world premiere of Stephen Belber’s Drifting Elegant. Brian holds an MFA in Acting from Brandies University and brings a wealth of experience as an actor and theater arts educator. Many thanks to his wife and two boys for all their love and support.

Robert Walsh

Robert Walsh° (Director/Artistic Director)
GSC: Songs For A New World, The New Electric Ballroom, North Shore Fish, Fighting Over Beverley, The Widow’s Blind Date, The Primary English Class, Our Town. GSC (Actor): Gloucester Blue, Sins of the Mother, The Subject Was Roses, The Barking Sharks, Two for the Seesaw.  Producing Artistic Director, American Stage Festival: Bus Stop, Intimate Exchanges, Jacques Brel…, and Lend Me a Tenor, among others.  Artistic Associate: Actors’ Shakespeare Project: As You Like It, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Coriolanus, Twelfth Night, Measure For Measure. Other productions directed include: Othello (Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey); Round and Round The Garden, Table Manners, K2, Later Life, Holiday Memories (Merrimack Rep); Rancho Mirage, Race, Speed-The-Plow, True West (New Repertory Theatre); The Secret of Sherlock Holmes, The Goatwoman of Corvis County (Shakespeare & Co.); Misalliance, A Life in the Theatre (Two River Theatre Co.); I Hate Hamlet (StageWest); The Little Foxes (Barter Theatre); and Of Mice and Men (Stoneham Theatre), among others. Roles in recent feature films include Black Mass, Patriot’s Day and the upcoming, Altar Rock.  Robert directed the on-field ceremonies for the ’99 All-Star Game at Fenway Park.  He is on the faculty at Brandeis University, where he also serves as Artistic Director.

Eric Levenson (Set Design)

Eric Levenson

Eric Levenson (Set Designer) is pleased to be returning to Gloucester Stage, where his most recent set designs were The Last of the Red Hot Lovers and The Goat, or Who is Sylvia in 2009.  Other Gloucester set designs have included Ponies (2007), Wind in the Willows (2006) and A Streetcar Named Desire (1991).  Eric’s recent designs include sets for Actor’s Shakespeare Project’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Henry VI, Part 2 and Othello, and sets for Violet and The Scottsboro Boys (IRNE Design Award) at SpeakEasy Stage,.  Eric is proud to be an All-Categories member of United Scenic Artists Local 829.

Eric would like to dedicate his work on this show to the memory of Galen Gibson, a member of the Streetcar Named Desire crew.

Jenna Worden

Jenna Worden (Properties Design)
Jenna Worden is delighted to return for her third season with Gloucester Stage. Favorite GSC credits include Out of Sterno, The Flick, and The Totalitarians. In addition, Jenna has worked with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (Our American Hamlet), WGBH (A Christmas Celtic Sojourn), Childsplay AZ, and Phoenix Theatre. She recently signed on as Programs Coordinator of Brighter Boston, a non-profit partnership providing teenagers with professional internships in technical theatre and event production. Jenna earned both her BA in Theatre Studies and BSEd in History from Northern Arizona University.

Russ Swift† (Lighting Design)
GSC: Resident Lighting Designer for the past 11 years. Productions include: Sweet and Sad; Out of SternoThe New Electric Ballroom; The Flick; Jacques Brel; Fences; Spring Awakening; North Shore Fish; Carnival; “Master Harold” . . . and the Boys; The Most Happy Fella; Fighting Over Beverley; Table Manners; Trying; The Breath of Life; Sins of the Mother; Billy Bishop Goes to War; Going to St. Ives; Dear Liar; The Belle of Amherst; Ponies; The Widow’s Blind Date; The Secret of Mme. Bonnard’s Bath; The Price; The Heidi Chronicles, Long Day’s Journey Into Night; My Old Lady; Spinning into Butter. Boston-area (select): The Hobbit (Wheelock Family Theatre); Scarlett Letter (Worcester Foothills); It’s All True (Lyric Stage Company of Boston); Rags (The Boston Conservatory); A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, 2010 and 1012 Gala (Boston Arts Academy). Other: Mr. Swift has designed for Tri-Cities Opera, the Jewish Theatre of New England, the Publick Theatre, Chamber Theatre Productions, Boston Lyric Opera, the Worcester Forum Theatre, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, the Theatre of Newburyport, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, Bristol Riverside Theatre, American Ensemble Theatre, Stephan Petronio Dance Company, the Caldwell Theatre, KewPee Corporation and the Trinidad Theatre Workshop. Mr. Swift has been on the faculty or staff at Northeastern University, Emerson College, Endicott College, Westfield State University, Eastern Connecticut State University, Salem State University, Community College of Rhode Island, and Groton School. He is currently the production manager for the Theatre Department at Boston College. Russ resides in Wilbraham with his wife, Mayre, and daughter, Michaela.

Linda Ross

Linda Ross† (Costume Design)
Linda Ross is delighted to be designing her first show at GSC. She has designed costumes for Salem Theatre Company and Marblehead’s Mugford Street Players, including favorite productions A Picasso, Alphabetical Order, The Crucible, and The Normal Heart. She has been a member of the drama faculty at Tufts University since 2007, where she designs costumes, hair and makeup for most of the department productions and currently serves as the director of undergraduate studies for drama and dance. Linda’s costume designs have been seen on New York stages and at regional theatres around the country, including 2econd Stage, The Alley Theatre, and Hartford Stage. While primarily focusing on costume design for theater, she has also designed lighting, and has designed costumes for dance, film, television, and web series. Her work can be seen at www.lindarossdesigns.com.

David Reiffel† (Sound Design)
At Gloucester Stage: Man in Snow, Gloucester Blue. Recent national: Shakespeare in Love (national premiere), Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet (Oregon Shakespeare Festival); Cymbeline (Shakespeare & Company). Selected recent Boston area: Blackberry Winter, The Elephant Man, Chesapeake [IRNE nominee] (New Repertory); Brilliant Adventures, Hamlet A Beautiful Day… [Norton award], Blood Wedding, Stupid Fucking Bird [Norton award] (Apollinaire); A Midsummer Night’s DreamOthello, Measure for Measure, As You Like It, Middletown (Actors Shakespeare Project); Blasted (Off the Grid); Coolsville, The Way of the World (The Boston Conservatory); Songs for a New World, Conference of the Birds (Brandeis); A Disappearing Number [IRNE nominee] (Underground Railway); The Bridges of Madison County, Dogfight, Big Fish, Carrie, The Color Purple (SpeakEasy). Listen to his musicals at souncloud.com/davidreiffel.

Marsha Smith* (Stage Manager)
GSC: Songs for a New World, Man in Snow, Fences, Jacques Brel…, This is Our Youth, Spring Awakening, Round and Round the Garden, Fighting Over Beverly, Living Together, An Ideal Husband,Tender, Sins of the Mother, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, Doubt, Widow’s Blind Date, Ponies, The Price.

Regional: School for Scandal, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Actors’ Shakespeare Project; Big Fish, Violet SpeakEasy Stage Co; On The Town, Lyric Stage Company; Reconcidering Hana(h), Franklin, Burning, The Company We Keep, The Farm, 5 Down 1 Across, Little Black Dress, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre; 9 Circles, Entertaining Mr Sloane, The Publick Theatre; Einstien’s Dreams, Underground Railway Theatre.

Education: BFA in Stage Management Emerson College. Marsha Lives on her family’s farm in Hudson NH and is glad to be back at GSC.

Let it rain

“The Rainmaker is about the willingness to take a leap of faith and the unexpected power of looking at familiar things in a new way.”
Mark Sardella, Wakefield Daily Item

Bates is Luminous in GSC’s Powerful ‘Rainmaker’

“Director Robert Walsh, artistic director of GSC, is one of the finest directors in the Boston area and his casting – and the direction – just feels right from beginning to end”
Rich Fahey’s On Boston Stages

Stars Illuminate GSC’s ‘THE RAINMAKER’

“The cast is terrific, Eric Levenson’s folksy set, outstanding, and Russ Swift’s lighting and David Reiffel’s sound effects are dramatically enhancing.”
The Revere Journal

From other productions:

“Nash’s 1954 play about Lizzie Curry, a woman just this side of spinsterdom whose romantic hopes are reignited when grifter/dreamer Starbuck shows up on the parched cattle ranch owned by her father and run by her two brothers, occupies its own cozy niche in mid-century American drama. Despite the backdrop of economic and environmental hardship, it’s not an Arthur Miller-like exercise in realism and social commentary. Nor is it as fraught with psychosexual tension as Tennessee Williams — no one would mistake sensible Lizzie for Blanche DuBois or any of Williams’ histrionic heroines. But in his own way, Nash is just as concerned as Williams and Miller about the effect of dreams — deferred and otherwise — as they begin to dry up with age, or at least go into hiding behind weathered wooden walls.”

“Nash’s play is really about the tricky – and very American – balancing act between pragmatism and idealism.”

–Kerry Reid, Chicago Tribune 




* Member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA)
° Member of Stage Directors & Choreographers Society (SDC)
† Represented by United Scenic Artists, Local USA-829 of the IATSE (USA)

Performances are Wednesday through Saturday at 7:30pm with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2:00pm. In the final week of the run there will be an additional Tuesday evening performance at 7:30pm.

Pill Hill Stories
Written and performed by Jay O’Callahan

Tuesday, July 18, 7:30pm

On the Cover of Time: A Memoir with Songs
Book and lyrics by Harriet Reisen, music by Jeanie Stahl, performed by Anne Gottlieb and Jeanie Stahl

Tuesday, July 25, 7:30pm

My Station in Life
A reading of a new play by Kenneth Riaf

Sunday, July 30, 7:30pm
FREE no reservations required