For Immediate Release
September 17, 2012
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Brockport, NY – When an offhand comment causes the breakup of a relationship, it may indicate that things were shaky at the start. The reactions of the couple and their best friends are at the heart of Neil LaBute’s reasons to be pretty, produced by The College at Brockport’s Department of Theatre and Music Studies beginning on Friday, October 5, 2012 at 7:30 in the Tower Fine Arts Center Mainstage, 180 Holley Street, Brockport.
LaBute has chronicled modern lives in his plays for years, usually without shielding the harshness of reality from the audience. In reasons to be pretty, he softens his focus a bit to include a more hopeful, more romanticized view of love. Oh, it wouldn’t be a LaBute play without cocky, self-assured men on stage, even engaging in a brawl at one point. But Greg, the young man whose girlfriend leaves him, retains a more idealized view of relationships than one usually sees from the playwright. He becomes incensed when Kent, his best friend, cheats on his own wife without any apparent repercussions because he feels that his buddy’s transgression is much more serious than his own. Throughout the play, the two couples, complacent in their dead-end jobs, engage in heated discourses about our country’s obsession with physical beauty, the meaning of love and the power of friendship.
reasons to be pretty marks the third LaBute play that Ruth Childs has directed at the College. “What I find so refreshing about this play is that it is probably the closest to people’s everyday lives. Some of LaBute’s male characters have reputations as being prigs or worse, and some of his women are thought of as doormats, or worse. Even though they take two different paths – and occasionally clash – in this piece we have two men trying to figure out how to be good men, and we have female LaBute characters who are much more three dimensional and assertive. I am also thrilled that a recent alumna, Samantha Valkenier, will be back to design costumes for the production.”
reasons to be pretty kicks off a season of very recent plays for the department. Other plays being produced include Mauritius (November/December), and The Fox on the Fairway (April/May). Mauritius, Theresa Rebeck’s 2007 drama revolves around an inherited stamp collection, its value, and the double crossing that ensues between two sisters and the stamp dealers from whom they seek advice. The Fox on the Fairway, which premiered in 2010, continues Ken Ludwig’s string of farces, which also includes Lend Me a Tenor and Moon Over Buffalo. This time he skewers the tony country club set where golf tournaments prevail. Of course, the eighth biannual Festival of Ten (March), will feature recent musings of ten playwrights in during an evening of ten 10-minute plays.
Performances of reasons to be pretty are October 5, 6, 18, 19 and 20 at 7:30 pm. There is also a matinee on Sunday, Ocotber 7 at 2 pm, which will be sign language interpreted. Tickets for reasons to be pretty are $15, $10 (Seniors and College at Brockport Alumni, Faculty and Staff) and $8 (Students) and are available by calling (585) 395-2787 or at the Tower Fine Arts Center Box Office.
More information on the 2012-13 Fine Arts Series at The College at Brockport can be found at www.brockport.edu/finearts. -end- Photo: Photo 1: Daniel Rivera as “Kent” and John Cummings as “Greg” duke it out in reasons to be pretty, opening at The College at Brockport’s Tower Fine Arts Center Mainstage on Friday, October 5
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