October 22–November 1
By Lucas Baisch
Directed by David R. Gammons
Developed as part of the Gloucester Stage
2015 Apprentice PlaywritingProgram
Lost youth and lost souls struggle to find meaning amid dingy basements, vanishing malls, and a bleak Midwestern summer.
“We need plays written by American writers, emerging out of our social fabric, that speak to our national community.”
Tim Sanford, Artistic Director, Playwrights Horizons
ABOUT THE PLAY
In an empty midwestern mini-mall food court, nineteen-year-old Casey Calloway works at a burrito stand while her entrepreneurial cousin Ari runs a shifty business. When the new hire Gus arrives, secrets within this stagnant community are slowly unveiled. Rife with cartoons, balloon animals, raps, and hallucinogenic gecko feces, this dark comedy questions what it means to be “normal” in a place of overwhelming simplicity. Ages 15 and up. Strong language and some adult situations.
WHY IT’S FOR YOU
Today, most adults can claim a childhood awash with memories of cartoons and blind happiness. For some, these memories give way to an obsession with nostalgia, a slowed-down life that prevents growth or being honest with one’s self. Pushing against a model of television storytelling, A Measure of Normalcy addresses a generation who has been told they either need to succeed or fade into the background, pursue delusional enterprise or try to reinvent who they are in an effort to feel adequate in society. This play is an anthem for those uncomfortable with the skin they live in, as they search for salvation in a time when it feels like there is none.
Lydia Barnett-Mulligan* (Casey) Lydia is delighted to make her Gloucester Stage debut. She has trained and performed at Shakespeare and Company in Lenox, MA, since the age of 15, where selected credits include Les Liaisons Dangereuses and Ice Glen, both directed by Tina Packer, The Servant of Two Masters, The Tamer Tamed, Dibbledance, and Twelfth Night. She is a seasonal actor with Actors’ Shakespeare Project, where plays include Measure for Measure, The Cherry Orchard (Anya), Macbeth, and The Merry Wives of Windsor (Dr. Caius/Ann Page). Selected other regional credits include The Physicists (with Roger Rees) at Williamstown Theatre Festival, Pericles at Elm Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet (Juliet) at the Putney Gardens, Steel Magnolias and Miracle on 34th Street at Stoneham Theatre, 123 and Outlaw Jean with Fresh Ink Theatre, Shakespeare On Love (Juliet) at Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo and Juliet, and Macbeth with Shakespeare Now. Directing credits: King John, The Tempest, and Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, all at Williams College. Summer 2015: Kitty in Saving Kitty at the Nora Theatre, and Viola in Twelfth Night at Elm Shakespeare Company. www.lydiabarnettmulligan.com
Ellen Colton* (Ms. Leland) is delighted to be at Gloucester Stage for this world premiere. She is a two-time winner of the IRNE award (Independent Reviewers of New England). She has been part of Shear Madness at the Charles Playhouse in Boston since 1997, and also performed in the show at the Lake George Dinner Theatre in New York. Other credits: Tale of the Allergist’s Wife, Over the River and Through the Woods, Kong’s Night Out, Beyond Belief (Lyric Stage Company of Boston), Good People, Well, Morning’s at Seven, Light Up The Sky, Kong’s Night Out, Tale of the Allergist’s Wife (New Century Theatre, Northampton, MA), The Last Jews (Boston Playwright’s Theatre),The Porch, (Stoneham Theatre, Majestic theatre, West Springfield, City Stage, Springfield), The Misanthrope (New Repertory Theatre), Divine Sister, The Women, Brooklyn Boy (SpeakEasy Stage Company). For the last 28 years in the New England area, she has served as secretary of the Screen Actors’ Guild, treasurer of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and now, proudly, she continues as secretary of the newly merged union, SAG-AFTRA. Since 1987, she continues to serve, also proudly, as the vice-chair of the local branch of Actors’ Equity Association.
Sarah Elizabeth Bedard (Ari) is thrilled to make her Gloucester Stage debut. Some favorite previous credits include Company One’s Shockheaded Peter, Actors’ Shakespeare Project’s Phèdre (Ismene), Berkshire Theatre Festival’s A Christmas Carol (Belle/Mrs. Cratchit), Shakespeare & Company’s Dibbledance SWAY, Mettawee River Theatre’s Taliesin, Boston Public Works’ Three (Jenni), Bad Habit Productions’ Translations (Maire) and Arcadia (Hannah). This year, Sarah participated in The Boston Theatre Marathon’s Warm-Up Lap (Huntington Theatre Company’s Hair of the Dog), workshops at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre as well as the Mad Dash. Sarah is a freelance fight choreographer (Company One, Brown Box Theatre Project, Brandeis University), a director at Stoneham Theatre’s Young Company, and a theatre educator with the Massachusetts Educational Theatre Guild. She holds an M.F.A. in Acting from Brandeis University. sarahelizabethbedard.com
Gabriel Graetz (Gus) is thrilled to be making his debut with Gloucester Stage. Previous roles include Yepikhodov in The Cherry Orchard, Witch/Fleance/Angus in Macbeth, and Fabian/Ensemble in Twelfth Night (Actors Shakespeare Project), Manus in Translations and Carson in Gross Indecency (Bad Habit Productions), Sam/Nick/ Ensemble in It’s a Wonderful Life (Stoneham Theatre), Rev. Canon Chasuble in The Importance of Being Earnest (Moonbox Productions), Francis Flute in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Brown Box Theatre Project) and Puck/Demetrius in Shit-faced Shakespeare (Magnificent Bastard Productions). Additionally, Gabriel leads tours as the painter John Singleton Copley through the Freedom Trail Foundation. Gabriel would like to thank his family and friends for their love and support, and dedicates this performance to the indomitable, brilliant and beautiful Chelsea Schmidt.
Eliott Purcell (Duncan) is delighted to make his Gloucester Stage debut. Regional credits include: Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s Romeo and Juliet (Romeo), King Lear, Two Gentlemen of Verona; Huntington Theatre Company’s Our Town (Wally); Stoneham Theatre’s Meet Me in St. Louis; Happy Medium Theatre’s Language of Angels and Newton Theatre Company’s The Song of Achilles (Patroclus). Eliott is a graduate of Boston College and is a proud Equity Membership Candidate.
Lucas Baisch (Playwright) is a playwright, performer, and visual artist originally from San Francisco, based in Chicago, now working as the inaugural Playwright Apprentice at Gloucester Stage Company during their 2015 season. His work has been read and developed at Chicago Dramatists, InFusion Theatre Company, Salonathon, Victory Gardens Theater, Links Hall, American Theatre Company, The Wulfden, The DeYoung Museum, SF Playground, and DePaul University’s annual Wrights of Spring. Productions: The Scavengers (The Healy Theater at Depaul University, dir. Bonnie Metzgar), A Measure of Normalcy (Gloucester Stage Company, dir. David R. Gammons), and Zipped & Pelted (The Wulfden/Chicago Fringe, dir. Katrina Dion). Literary/Public Programs Assistance: Rest, The Testament of Mary, Samsara (Victory Gardens Theater). Education: BFA Playwriting, Depaul University. www.lucasbaisch.com
David R. Gammons (Director) is a director, designer, and theatre educator. He is thrilled to be working at Gloucester Stage for the first time. Recent productions include the world premiere of John Kuntz’s Necessary Monsters and the New England premieres of The Whale, The Motherf**ker with the Hat (2013 Elliot Norton Awards for Outstanding Production and Outstanding Actress), Red (2012 Elliot Norton Awards for Outstanding Production and Outstanding Actor), and Blackbird at SpeakEasy Stage Company; Cherry Docs, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, and My Name is Rachel Corrie at the New Repertory Theatre; the world premieres of Walt McGough’s The Farm and John Kuntz’s The Salt Girl at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre; The Winter’s Tale as part of the Shakespeare Exploded Festival at the American Repertory Theatre; and The Comedy of Errors, Medea, The Hotel Nepenthe, The Duchess of Malfi, and Titus Andronicus (2007 Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Director) for Actors’ Shakespeare Project. Mr. Gammons is on the Theatre Arts Faculty at MIT and The Boston Conservatory, and has directed productions there and at Harvard University, Brandeis University, Boston College, and Suffolk University, among others. For more information, please visit davidrgammons.com.
Chelsea Kerl (Costume Designer) is so pleased to be working with Gloucester Stage. She recently graduated from Boston University with an MFA in Costume Design, having previously attended the University of Maryland, where she received degrees in both Theatre and English. She has been working as a freelance designer in the Boston area for four years, and her work has been previously seen at Brown Box Theatre Project (Taming of the Shrew, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo and Juliet), Stoneham Theatre (Luna Gale, Walking the Tightrope), and Stoneham’s young company (Godspell, Comedy of Errors, Piggy Nation, Spamalot, Little Mermaid Jr), Groton School (A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum), and New Repertory Theatre (The Little Prince, Assassins, Tongue of a Bird), among other places. She has also worked sewing in the costume shops of several local theatres, including Boston Conservatory and American Repertory Theater. More of her work can be seen at www.chelseakerl.com.
Courtney Nelson (Set Design) Recent credits include: Las Meninas (NYC Premier), Rachel (NYC), Vişne Baçhesi/The Cherry Orchard (Istanbul, Turkey) and An Enemy of the People (Charleston, West Virginia) with New Brooklyn Theatre; La Boheme (Faneuil Hall, Boston) with NEMPAC Opera; Song Cycle (Peabody Essex Museum) with Encounters Ensemble; Uncle Jack (Boston, MA) with Boston Center for American Performance; Pattern of Life (Boston), Our Lady, and Tongue of a Bird (Watertown, MA)with New Repertory Theatre.
Allison Schneider (Lighting Designer) Allison Schneider got into lighting design while avoiding classwork at MIT but then it became a whole thing. She likes magic and realism and magical realism. Most recently she worked on the lighting design for the workshop of Profound Little Beasts, a piece by Anna Kohler traveling to the Wooster Group’s Performing Garage in January. Other lighting designs include The Clytemnestriad with Fresh Ink Theatre, Equal Writes and Restricted with Boston University/Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat with Lyric First Stage, Human Contact with Unreliable Narrator, Margo Veil with MIT Dramashop, Reefer Madness with the MIT Musical Theater Guild, and The Taming of the Shrew, The Cocktail Party, and The Tempest with the MIT Shakespeare Ensemble. Pictures of her stuff are at aschneidesign.com.
David Wilson† (Sound Design) has designed lighting or sound for over 350 productions of opera, theater, concert and dance. He has served on the faculty of Brandeis University, heading the graduate program in sound design, and has designed and taught at Boston College, Boston Conservatory of Music, Bowdoin, Emerson, New England Conservatory, Tufts, Suffolk University, and UMASS-Lowell. He is the resident lighting designer at Reagle Music Theater, and his designs for theater at other companies include Actors’ Shakespeare Project, Boston Playwrights, Central City Opera, Company One, Dibble Dance, Harwich Junior Theater, Merrimack Rep, Moonbox, New Rep, Nora, North Shore Music Theater, Stoneham, Shakespeare and Co, and WHAT. Recent designs include sound and music for The Comedy of Errors at Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (Elliot Norton Award); lighting and sound design for Windowmen at Boston Playwrights (IRNE nomination, best design) , lighting design for Pinocchio at Wheelock Family Theater, sound design for That Hopey Changey Thing at Stoneham Theater, and City of Angels at Lyric Stage. dw-design.com
“Playwrights may deliver the essential ingredient for any theater production—the script.” —The New York Times
Gloucester Stage’s inaugural professional apprenticeship program will culminate with a World Premiere of a play written by our playwriting apprentice. Audiences will witness the birth of a next-generation playwright in this production—and do their bit to support young theatre makers.
The Workshop is designed around a playwriting apprentice who works throughout the season to author a new play. The play will be workshopped in readings with audience talkbacks. The playwriting apprentice will meet regularly with select professionals to work through the play, addressing issues, deepening characters, and working toward a final draft. The World Premiere of the playwright’s work will be presented as a fully-staged, Equity production as part of our Mainstage season.
* Member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA)