Shows rate 10 out of Tenn

Gabrielle Bejarano, Staff writer

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This weekend welcomed The One-Acts of Tennessee Williams with excitement and enthusiasm, all four performances resulting in a sold-out theater.
The Mercyhurst Theatre program presented the show in a new and up close perspective with audience members prompted to sit on the stage with characters weaving in and out of the aisles, a modern experience adding to the brilliance of Mercyhurst students’ depictions of Williams’ work.
Each piece did a fabulous job showcasing the talents of each of its student directors.
“This Property is Condemned, directed by Alexis Webb, told the story of Willie, a 13-year-old girl from Mississippi played by Maria Dombrowski, and 16-year-old Tom played by Chance Wandler.
The plot of the play was revealed through deliberate exposition, primarily Tom asking questions, with Willie answering, bit by bit revealing the dismal circumstances she has been in since the death of her family.
“I Can’t Imagine Tomorrow,” directed by Monica Tinsley, showed us the lives of “One” and “Two,” each a lone friend to the other, who execute the same habit of playing cards and watching the TV in hopes of steering clear of any legitimate conflict.
One was played by Grace Sloop and Two by John Hetrick, both successfully portraying needy people avoiding their problems.
One struggled with her physical condition and waited for inevitable death.
“The Case of the Crushed Petunias,” directed by Jacob Tretinik, told the story of Miss Dorothy Simple, a woman trapped in her job at a prim and proper shop in Massachusetts.
Miss Dorothy Simple was played by Jenna Rosciszewski and the young man who unfortunately trampled her petunias was played by Jon Reddinger.
Supporting characters Police Officer and Mrs. Dull were played by Carlena Bressanelli and Amelia Miguez, respectively.
“Hello from Bertha,” directed by Abby Whitman, had Abby Larimore play Bertha, a suffering and delusional woman remembering her many past lovers whilst waiting for eviction and a slow but sure death.
Bethany Sulecki played Goldie, Rachele Heasley played Lena and Darby Shafron played Girl.
“Lord Byron’s Love Letter,” directed by Tessa Sayre, was about an old woman played by Emma Kleinmann and a spinster played by Ella Santillano living in a decaying house who claimed to possess a love letter from Lord Byron.
Nina Hollopeter played a curious visitor and Justice Alleruzzo played her less than intrigued husband.
“Auto-da-Fé,” directed by Elizabeth Shewan, is about Eloi, a young postal worker who resides in New Orleans with his mother, Mme. Duevenet, who was played by Alexandra Newton.
Carroll did a fantastic job of portraying the frustration and pent up fire his character saw as necessary for the purification of his city.
Tennessee Williams’ work is remarkable in how he conveyed all of this information, and the Mercyhurst students did a wonderful job carrying out his vision.
The creative team behind the scenes included Madeleine Steineck, lighting designer; Rebecca Holt, production stage manager; and Allison Christopher, assistant stage manager.

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