Photos courtesy of Mark Garvin Photography
People’s Light continues its 40th Anniversary Season with the regional premiere of Jessica Dickey’s Row After Row running now through November 9th, 2014 on the Steinbright Stage. David Bradley directs.
Playwright Jessica Dickey grew up just outside of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and knew from an early age that she was surrounded by a complicated history. On the roads outside her home were signs marking where the Union and Confederate troops had marched. Downtown were buildings flecked with bullet holes. Jessica says “I was always so intrigued by the idea of the presence of the past, the ghosts of the past. Having grown up next door from Gettysburg and the Mason Dixon Line, the Civil War has always loomed large for me. I wrote Row After Row because I felt the need to explore the themes of the Civil War without the clichés of the political or historical, but through the personal&$8212;the lens of these characters. “
Row After Row is the story of Tom (Kevin Bergen) and Cal (William Zielinski), two hardcore Civil War re-enactors who have known each other since the sixth grade. Cal takes on the role of Confederate General Longstreet. Tom inhabits the role of a Union deserter. Every year they meet, re-enact Pickett’s Charge, and then head to a specific table at a local bar for beers. This year they find Leah (Teri Lamm) at their table when they arrive. She is a newcomer to Gettysburg and to re-enacting, and she disrupts their traditions in more ways than one. Throughout, the play jumps between isolated exchanges within Pickett’s Charge during the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863 and an old pub in Gettysburg, PA today.
Director David Bradley adds, “I was drawn to Jessica’s writing six years ago when I read her solo piece The Amish Project, inspired by the shooting in Nickel Mines, PA. Jessie creates stories that join fact and imagination, past and present, the intimate and the expansive. She’s got a great sense of theatricality.” Producing Director Zak Berkman agrees, “Jessie explores notions of bravery and healing, be they personal or national, with such humor, fierce wisdom, and poetry. I’m thrilled we can produce the regional premiere here at People’s Light.”
Row After Row previews on Wednesday, October 15 and Thursday, October 16 at 7:30 pm and Friday, October 17 at 8 pm. The play opens on Saturday, October 18 and runs through Sunday, November 9. Audiences are encouraged to join the artists for a conversation about the production after the Thursday performances on October 23, 30 and November 6.
Single tickets: $27 – $47. For tickets, call the Box Office at 610.644.3500. Special discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. For more information or to purchase group tickets, call 610.647.1900 x111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.