Runs: 09/27/12 — 10/14/12
Opening Night: 09/28/12
Event Time: 7:30pm Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays; 2:00pm Sunday Matinees
Tickets: $26 for adults, $18 for students (age 18 and under, or will valid college ID) and seniors (age 65 and over)
As powerful today as when it was first produced on Broadway in 1937, Of Mice and Men is a moving, heart-wrenching and profoundly beautiful tale of love, friendship and struggle. One of the great classics of American literature AND great classic of the American stage! George and Lenny, and their haunting friendship, are at the heart of this timely tale of two men struggling to live in the dustbowl of California during the Great Depression.
Directed by Artistic Director Scott Palmer, our version promises to be both visually and emotionally stunning!
Performances are at The Venetian Theatre, located at 253 E. Main Street, Hillsboro, OR 97123.
OREGON HISTORICAL SOCIETY EVENT
Of Mice and Men is set during the Great Depression. Check out this OHS event about the history of that time here in the Pacific NW, Commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the Bonneville Power Administration: An Evening with Pulitzer Prize Winning Historian David Kennedy “The Great Depression and the Creation of the Bonneville Power Administration” Thursday, November 1, 7 PM At the First Congregational Church Admission: $15, $10 for OHS members. For more details, click here.
Peter Schuyler – George
This is Peter’s second show with B&B, having appeared as Doc Porter in Crimes of the Heart in 2011. Since he moved to Portland from NYC a year ago, he has appeared as Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing for Northwest Classical Theatre Company, Laertes in Hamlet for Portland Actors Ensemble, Friedrich/Father Elm in Rapunzel Uncut!for Northwest Children’s Theater, and directed Robosaurus for Post5’sDeath/Sex: Portland. In 2013, he’ll be playing Macduff for Post5’s production of Macbeth. In NY: Titus X: The Punk Rock Musical (NYIT nominee), Strom Thurmond is Not a Racist (NYIT nominee), Titus Andronicus, Romeo and Juliet, The Eight: Reindeer Monologues, Arsenic and Old Lace, Orestes 2.0,The Maid’s Tragedy, The Front Page, All in The Timing, and Frankenstein. Regional: The King and I, My Fair Lady, Lonestar, Comedy of Errors, Twelfth Night, The Tempest, and Macbeth. Film/TV: Leverage, Grimm, Discord, Potty Talk, From Date to Mate, unREAL, Synapse, and Spare Change. Peter is an alumnus of Northern Arizona University. He would like to thank Scott Palmer for trusting him with this role; extra special thanks to his amazing wife, Dawn.
Colin Wood – Lennie
Originally from Montana, Colin holds an MFA in Acting from Minnesota State University and has worked as an actor with professional theatre companies in Montana, Michigan, Minnesota and Oregon. Locally, he has performed with the Beaverton Civic Theatre, Live On Stage, Tapestry Theatre, the Classic Greek Theatre of Oregon, Lakewood Theatre, and Staged!. He has also performed at the Theatre Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland and is an Equity Membership Candidate. Favorite show credits include Jesus Christ Superstar, Oklahoma!, The Fantasticks, The Wild Party, Guys and Dolls, The Taming of the Shrew, and The Rainmaker. He would like to thank Shannon for her incredible support and understanding.
Edward Williams – Candy
Edward is happy to be making his Portland area debut in this production. He recently moved to Lake Oswego from McMinnville after having spent 16 years there as a Theatre and Language Arts teacher at McMinnville High School. Among his favorites that he directed at MHS are On The Razzle, The Musical Comedy Murders, and Noises Off. Edward also appeared in a number of productions at McMinnville’s Gallery Theatre, including RP McMurphey in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Edmund in King Lear, and Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet. He also directed Jane Martin’s play, Middle-Age White Guys. Edward received a BA in Theatre and Speech from Oregon State University and a MFA in Theatre Arts from Temple University. Upon graduation from Temple, he spent one summer as a company member of The Virginia Shakespeare Festival, where he appeared as Vincenzo in Taming of the Shrew and as York in King Richard II. Later this year Edward will be appearing as Agrippa in Anthony and Cleopatra at Northwest Classical Theatre.
Nathan Dunkin – Slim
Nathan is a Portland based actor trained at London’s prestigious East 15 Acting School. He recorded the voice of Dad for The Hallmark Channel’s Jingle All Wayand the upcoming sequel. He has a leading role in Chel White’s indie featureBucksville, which is currently making the film festival circuit, as well as recently landing a small Role on TNT’s Leverage. Nathan is a highly trained singer and performs in musicals in Portland. Recently he was seen as Chief Dwight Grackle in JANE: A Theatre Company’s November and played the title role in Portland Actor Ensemble’s Richard III.
Adam Syron – Curley
Adam is thrilled to be appearing in his first show with Bag&Baggage. After living in the Portland area all his life, Adam spent four years at Western Washington University where he received his BA in theatre in 2011. College credits includePirates of Penzance (Frederic), Two Gentlemen of Verona (Proteus), and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Lysander). Professional credits include Our Town(Joe Crowell) and The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Riff-Raff). Adam would like to thank his ridiculously goofy family, his constantly supportive friends, and his somewhat overweight cat. Adam would also like to thank Scott, Audra, his fellow cast and crew mates, and you (the audience) for coming to the show.
Cassie Greer – Curley’s Wife
Cassie is excited to be returning to the B&B stage for Of Mice and Men after appearing in last season’s Dangerous Liaisons, Crimes of the Heart, and The Tempest. Cassie trained in the BA Theatre program at Goshen College, the MFA Acting program at Florida Atlantic University, and is a certified Assistant Teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework®. Favorite credits include Jean in David’s Redhaired Death, Sarah in Company, Hester in Hello & Goodbye, Bertha in After Mrs. Rochester, the title character in Lysistrata, and the world premieres of Fear/Falling and KOLO. Cassie is thrilled to have had opportunities not only to act, but also to teach acting, movement, and voice to students across the country, and is incredibly grateful to her family and friends for their continual love, support and energy.
Ian Armstrong – Carlson
Ian is a Bag&Baggage company member who has most recently been seen on the Venetian stage in A Christmas Carol as Bob Cratchit and in The Wizard of Oz as the Tin Man for B&B at the Washington County Fair. Ian holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from the University of Oregon. He is afraid of heights, costumed characters, and aliens.
David Heath – The Boss
This is David’s third production with Bag&Baggage, having previously been seen as Charley in Death of a Salesmanand Gremio in Taming of the Shrew. He was a long-time member of the New Rose Theatre ensemble, where he appeared as Ed Devery in Born Yesterday, Norman inThe Norman Conquests, James Joyce inTravesties, Richard Rowan in Joyce’s Exiles, and the Sheriff of Nottingham inThe Adventures of Robin Hood, to name but a few of his favorites. He has also appeared at Artists Repertory Theatre (including The Crucible, Season’s Greetings, and Passion), Storefront (Ten November), Lakewood, Portland Repertory, Portland Civic, Northwest Classical Theatre, and Profile Theatre Project. He has also appeared in an episode each of the locally filmed Portlandia and Leverage.
Luke Armstrong – Whit
Luke is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting from Western Oregon University. Of Mice and Men is Luke’s first theater experience outside of the college setting. At Western, he was seen as Jimmy Smith in Thoroughly Modern Millie, Cliton in The Liar, Chad and Jimmy inAlmost, Maine, Rod in Lysistrata, and the Man in Samuel Beckett’s “Play”. In his spare hours he likes to read Batman comics, spend time with family, and study Shakespeare. Luke is thrilled to be working with Bag&Baggage and would like to thank his parents, family and friends for their continual support.
Emery John Frazier – Crooks
A proud 2012 graduate of The Portland Actors Conservatory, Emery is elated to make his first appearance in a Bag&Baggage production and also his professional debut.
Scott Palmer – Director
Scott is the founding Artistic Director of Bag&Baggage and has directed and produced critically acclaimed theatrical productions in the United Kingdom, New Zealand and the United States (including Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit and Private Lives, Ben Jonson’s The Silent Woman, the Reduced Shakespeare Company’s The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), the North American premiere of Adrian Osmand’s Just One More Dance for OSU’s Holocaust Memorial Week and the world premieres of original adaptations of Romeo and Juliet,Macbeth, Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night, The Tempest, or the Enchanted Isle, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and A Christmas Carol. Scott is a Hillsboro native, a graduate of Hillsboro High School, has a B.S. from the University of Oregon, an M.A.I.S. from Oregon State University and studied for his PhD in Contemporary Theatre Practice at the University of Glasgow, Scotland. Scott is the founding Artistic Director of Glasgow Repertory Company, and is a member of the Westside Cultural Alliance.
Melissa Heller – Costume Designer
With a lifelong interest in apparel, Melissa always knew that her life would be devoted to fashion. It wasn’t until college that her interest in costuming was born. She worked as assistant costume designer at Oregon State University Theatres before graduating in 2008 with a B.S. in Apparel Design. She then re-located Portland to pursue her career in apparel design. After mucking about a bit, she began work with Oregon Ballet Theater, where she helped to create costumes for several productions for the stage during their 2010/2011 season. Recently, she designed and created costumes for Bag&Baggage’s production of A Christmas Carol, Dangerous Liaisons, and Kabuki Titus. Melissa will continue her partnership with Bag&Baggage in their 5th season as resident costume designer.
Demetri Pavlatos – Scenic Designer and Technical Director
This is Demetri’s first set design project with Bag&Baggage, and his third season as technical director. Previous scenic design credits include Fools at Profile Theatre Company, The Last of the Boys and Penelope at Third Rail Repertory Theatre, and Nine Parts of Desire at Coho. He is also the technical director for Third Rail Repertory Theatre and builds the sets for Profile Theatre Company, works with the theatre students at St. Mary’s Academy, and is the owner of Lunar Theatrical, a set construction and technical services company. He has recently worked with Broadway Rose, Pixie Dust Productions, Live Onstage, and Stumptown Stages.
Jennifer Lin – Lighting Designer
Jennifer is a freelance lighting designer, stage technician, and founding member of the Quick and Dirty Art Project. Recent design projects include QDART’s 24 Hour Project with CoHo andExpulsion with Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre. Upcoming projects include A Noble Failure with Third Rail Repertory Theatre andInternational Falls at CoHo.
Audra Petrie – Props Master
Audra has been B&B’s Production Manager since the start of the 2008-2009 season and the Company Manager since January 2011. She has also stage managed numerous Bag&Baggage shows in the past – most recently Kabuki Titus, Shakespeare’s R&J and The Tempest, or the Enchanted Isle. Audra has done other stage management work for CoHo Productions, Salem Repertory Theatre, and Willamette University. Audra also enjoys dabbling in props work. Besides this show, somer of her most recent prop credits at Bag&Baggage include: Kabuki Titus,Dangerous Liaisons, Shakespeare’s R&J, A Christmas Carol(both the 2009 and 2011 productions), and Crimes of the Heart, among others.
Becci Swearingen – Stage Manager
Two years ago, when Becci Stage Managed her first production with Bag& Baggage (The Glass Menagerie), she didn’t know that it was the beginning of a relationship with a theatre company that would eventually feel like family to her. She is blessed and lucky to be a member of such a creative, thoughtful and talented company. Becci holds both a Bachelor’s and a Master’s Degree in Theatre Arts and eventually plans to go on to pursue a PhD. In the meantime, however, she is appreciating all that she is learning during this season in her life. Among all Bag&Baggage shows Becci has been a part of – both in the audience, and behind the scenes – her favorites include: (watching) Death of a Salesman, Educating Rita, Macbeth, Shakespeare’s R&J and A Christmas Carol and (working) Crimes of the Heart, The Tempest: Or Enchanted Isle, The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge and Love Letters. Endless thanks and love to the most supportive and amazing group of friends a girl could ever ask for!
Kirk Webster – Assistant Stage Manager
Starting when he was eleven with a summer program, Kirk has been working in, with and for theatres for the last 14 years. His experience and curiosity has taken him from onstage to backstage, from stage hand to House Manager, and to lighting design and sound. Kirk served as a Technical Director for the Corvallis School District while, as Assistant Technical Director of the Majestic Theatre in Corvallis, he oversaw the operational details of a myriad of live performances, adding his lighting and sound expertise to many productions. For Bag&Baggage Productions, Kirk served as Stage Manager for A Christmas Caroland was Assistant Stage Manager for Kabuki Titus,Shakespeare’s R&J, The Tempest, or the Enchanted Isle, The Mystery of Irma Vep, The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge, and The Glass Menagerie.
John Armour – Fight Choreographer
John has been choreographing violence for more than 20 years. He is based in Portland, Oregon where he choreographs for many local theater companies and teaches throughout the region at colleges, high schools and middle schools. John’s work was last seen at Bag&Baggage in Kabuki Titus, Dangerous Liaisons,Shakespeare’s R&J, and Macbeth. He regularly choreographs for Portland Opera, Portland Center Stage, Oregon Children’s Theater, Miracle Theater and many others in the Portland/Vancouver metropolitan area. John’s work has twice been recognized within the Portland theater community for best fight design.
Playwright – John Steinbeck
John Steinbeck (1902-1968) was born in the little town of Salinas, California, a few miles from the Pacific coast near the fertile Salinas Valley. This locality forms the background for many of his descriptions of the common man’s everyday life. He was raised in moderate circumstances, yet he was on equal terms with the workers’ families in this rather diversified area. He worked on ranches to put himself through college at Stanford University, but left Stanford without graduating.
In 1925 he went to New York, where he tried for a few years to establish himself as a freelance writer, but he failed and returned to California. After publishing some novels and short stories, Steinbeck first became widely known with Tortilla Flat (1935), a series of humorous stories about Monterey paisanos – asocial individuals who, in their wild revels, are almost caricatures of King Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table. It has been said that in the United States this book came as a welcome antidote to the gloom of the then prevailing depression. The laugh was now on Steinbeck’s side.
Steinbeck’s novels can all be classified as social novels dealing with the economic problems of rural labour, but there is also a streak of worship of the soil in his books, which does not always agree with his matter-of-fact sociological approach. After the rough and earthy humour of Tortilla Flat, he moved on to more serious fiction, often aggressive in its social criticism, to In Dubious Battle (1936), which deals with the strikes of the migratory fruit pickers on California plantations. This was followed by Of Mice and Men (1937), the story of the imbecile giant Lennie (who, out of tenderness alone, squeezes the life out of every living creature that comes into his hands), and a series of admirable short stories collected in the volume The Long Valley (1938). In 1939 he published what is considered his best work, Pulitzer Prize-winning The Grapes of Wrath, the story of Oklahoma tenant farmers who, unable to earn a living from the land, moved to California where they became migratory workers.
Among his later works should be mentioned East of Eden (1952),The Winter of Our Discontent (1961), and Travels with Charley(1962), a travelogue in which Steinbeck wrote about his impressions during a three-month tour in a truck that led him through forty American states.
The Nobel Prize in Literature 1962 was awarded to John Steinbeck “for his realistic and imaginative writings, combining as they do sympathetic humour and keen social perception”. In his Presentation Speech, Anders Österling (Permanent Secretary of the Swedish Academy, which awards the Nobel Prize) noted that in Steinbeck, there is “a strain of grim humour which, to some extent, redeems his often cruel and crude motif. His sympathies always go out to the oppressed, to the misfits and the distressed; he likes to contrast the simple joy of life with the brutal and cynical craving for money. But in him we find the American temperament also in his great feeling for nature, for the tilled soil, the wasteland, the mountains, and the ocean coasts, all an inexhaustible source of inspiration to Steinbeck in the midst of, and beyond, the world of human beings.”
Steinbeck died in New York City in December of 1968.
SOURCES: “John Steinbeck – Biography”. Nobelprize.org. 11 Jul 2012 http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1962/steinbeckbio. html, “Nobelprize.org”. Nobelprize.org. 11 Jul 2012 http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1962/press.html, “The Nobel Prize in Literature 1962”. Nobelprize.org. 11 Jul 2012 http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1962/
MORE ON JOHN STEINBECK: The Steinbeck Center at San Jose State University: http://as.sjsu.edu/steinbeck/, The National Steinbeck Center: http://www.steinbeck.org/, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Steinbeck
“Of Mice and Men” Notes for Parents
What Parents Need To Know:
Written in 1937, Of Mice and Men contains slang and colloquialisms of the time period that may be offensive to some audience members today. Keep in mind that the language has to do with the authenticity of these characters, and not any kind of vulgar agenda. This play is recommended for high school-aged students and older.
What Parents and Families Can Discuss:
Of Mice and Men captures an important era in the history of America. George and Lennie’s friendship was extremely rare and unique in 1937 – can you imagine if such friendship was as rare today? It’s interesting to observe the effect that isolation and loneliness have on human beings. Are there particular things in our society today that isolate us from each other? Our culture has changed so much in the past 75 years – in terms of Civil Rights, economics, women’s rights, and the idea of the American Dream – but we maintains strong ties to the places from which we’ve come. For more information and background on the show, please refer to our Curriculum Guide.