"A Year Down Yonder" premieres at Open Eye

Margaretville — “A Year Down Yonder,” in this new comedy premiering at The Open Eye Theater, 960 Main Street, Margaretville on Thursday, April 8 at 7 p.m. The year is 1937, and Mary Alice Dowdel’s father has lost his job. The family moves from their Chicago apartment into a very small housekeeping room, and 15-year-old Mary Alice is sent to the country to live with Grandma. “Better you than me,” says her mother, as Mary Alice boards the train for “A Year Down Yonder.”
John Dilworth Newman has adapted “A Year Down Yonder” from the Newberry Award-winning book by Richard Peck. Richard De Genaro directs this new play for family audiences set against the backdrop of the Great Depression. Barbara Morrow plays the central character Mary Alice, who suddenly finds herself in Grandma’s “hick town” for a year-long stay filled with humorous adventures and misadventures.
Grandma Dowdel (Amie Brockway) wastes no time taking Mary Alice to meet Mr. August Fluke (Roy Moses), the school principal, janitor, basketball coach, and shop teacher who enrolls her as a high school junior. She soon meets her new best buddy Ina- Rae (Megan Passarelli), Mildred the bully (Katie Fairbairn), Carleen the flirt (Melissa Day) and Augie Fluke, Jr. (Cameron Pass- arelli). Playing multiple roles are Terri Mateer as Mother, Miss Butler, Mrs. Abernathy, and Mrs. Lovejoy; John Exter as Old Man Nyquist and the New York artist Mr. Green; and Philip Misner as Mary Alice’s brother Joey and Royce, the new boy in town. Roy Moses who plays Mr. Fluke, also plays the banker Mr. Weidenbach and Rev. Lutz. Patricia Brannen is Stage Manager.
Designers for the set is Harry Kirn; lighting is by Adrienne J. Brockway; costumes are by Virginia Chapman and Bonnie Walker.
Performances of “A Year Down Yonder” at The Open Eye Theater, 960 Main Street, Margaretville, are Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7 p.m., Sundays at 3 p.m., April 8-18.
Tickets are Adults $15; Seniors $12; Students and Children $7. Phone reservations and information: 845 586-1660, or e-mail openeye@catskill.net or order tickets online at www.theopeneye.org.