In the Summer Houseby Jane Bowles
This workshop production was directed by the Festival Curator, David Kaplan, and starred some of our favorite actors from past years.
directed by David Kaplan
A Festival Workshop ProductionProvincetown, MA and New York, NY
Event Sponsored By:
in memory of Bill Tchakirides
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I'm just a weak, ordinary, very ordinary woman in her middle years, but I've been able to wipe all the petty details from my life... all of them.
About the Play
What happened a year ago on the rocks by the summer house? Did Mrs. Constable’s daughter slip or did Mrs. Eastman’s daughter push her? A year after Mrs. Constable’s daughter Vivien died they both hang around the Lobster Bowl Restaurant (impersonated in Provincetown by the Boatslip).Did Vivien fall? Or was she pushed by Mrs. Eastman’s daughter, Molly? When Mrs. Eastman returns from Mexico will she break up her daughter’s marriage? What about oyster-shucking Ines who seems to know something about slavery?
This workshop production was directed by the Festival Curator, David Kaplan, and starred some of our favorite actors from past years. Williams thought it was “not only the most original play I have ever read, I think it also the oddest and funniest and one of the most touching.”
Adding to the melodrama, another question hangs over the text: Tennessee Williams loved this play. He read the first act in 1940, recommended it for a grant to get the second act written, traveled in1956 to Ann Arbor, Michigan to see the play performed, gave it blurbs and consistent praise in interviews and in his Memoirs. Why?
This production tried to answer those questions by picking up the story after Vivien’s
death and doubling back to the scene on the
What Williams read in Mexico (right after he finished his first summer in Provincetown) echoes in his later plays: The Glass Menagerie’s dominating mother and child-like daughter, The Night of the Iguana’s exuberant Mexican assault on Anglo repression, the Camino Real’s dead-end humor. Bowles, a cult novelist and short story writer, unwraps her theme with panache: the need to step back in order to move on.
This workshop production, followed by a discussion of the play’s many connections to
Williams, took place around a swimming pool and featured stars from Orpheus Descending (TW Fest 2010,2011): Irene
Glezos as Mrs. Eastman-Cuevas, Brenda Currin as
Mrs. Constable, Beth Bartley as Ines.
About the Creative Team
Irene Glezos (Mrs. Eastman-Cuevas)New York and Regional credits include: Joyce/Isabella Bird in Top Girls (dir. April Shawhan), Anna Prager in Shauna Kanter’s The Gift, Fairouz in Naomi Wallace’s In the Heart of America (dir. Tony Kushner), Collette in Four Dogs and a Bone, Bo in Criminal Minds, Sally in A Lie of the Mind, Anna in Ron Elisha’s Two (with Mark Hammer), Shirl the Pearl in Criminal Genius, Serafina in The Rose Tattoo, Antigone inAntigone (performed in the crypt at St. John the Divine!) and Marilyn Monroe in her solo play, Y (dir. Brad Calcaterra). Irene has appeared in numerous films including Woody Allen’s “Celebrity” and TV series including "Law & Order,” “Conviction,” “Law & Order: Criminal Intent,” and "Sex and the City." She is a graduate of Catholic University in Washington, D.C.
Brenda Currin (Mrs. Constable) played the daughter in the film of In Cold Blood. Other films: Reds, Taps, The World According to Garp (Pooh), Life with Mikey, and the cult classic, C.H.U.D. Plays in New York: Wendy Kesselman’s My Sister in This House (Obie Award), Threepenny Opera, Stages, Museum, The Art of Dining, Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All for You, What the Sparrow Said among many. Regional theater: The Cherry Orchard (Hartford Stage), The Ghost Sonata (Yale Rep), The Envoi Messages (Indiana Rep), Voice of the Prairie (Hartford Stage), Arms and the Man (Chautauqua). Collaborations on original pieces and adaptations: Vienna: Lusthaus and The Hunger Artist with Martha Clarke, Sister and Miss Lexie, David Kaplan’s and Currin’s homage to Eudora Welty’s work, ”A Fire Was in My Head,” Kaplan’s adaptation of Welty’s “Music From Spain.” Recently, Brenda played Charlotte in Lucy Thurber’s new play, Derivations.
Beth Bartley (Ines) performed on Broadway with the late great Sir Alan Bates in Tony nominated Fortune's Fool (dir. Arthur Penn). Other credits include the film Kinsey (dir. Bill Condon), TV series Mercy, a regional production of The Beauty Queen of Leenane (dir. John Burke), a national tour with The Acting Company in Comedy of Errors (dir. John Rando) & the upcoming feature film The Daymakers (dir. Anthony Arkin). She has contributed to the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theater Festival for 3 consecutive years, making her Provincetown debut in The Hotel Plays in The Lady of Larkspur Lotion (dir. Andrew McGinn). Beth is a graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy and The Juilliard School.
David Kaplan (director) stages plays around the world with professional companies in indigenous languages and settings. Mr. Kaplan is curator and co-founder of the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival. He has staged Williams' plays worldwide. In 2003 Mr. Kaplan directed Tennessee Williams’ The Eccentricities of a Nightingale in Cantonese at the Hong Kong Repertory Theater. In 1993 he directed and designed the Russian premiere of Suddenly Last Summer, and in 2008 in Chicago, the world premiere of Williams' The Day on Which a Man Dies. Seasons past include:a Sufi King Learin Tashkent, Uzbekistan, performed in the Uzbek language; Genet’s The Maids in Ulaan Baator, Mongolia, performed in Mongolian; A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Buryatia, performed in the Buryat language with shamans. In Russia Mr. Kaplan staged the first Russian productions of Auntie Mameand Eugene O'Neill's Ah, Wilderness!Also in Russia: Macbeth.