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KSC Students Restage Eleemosynary

KEENE, N.H., 01/21/10 - Keene State College students will restage Lee Blessing’s Eleemosynary to help the cast raise funds to attend the Region I Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. Directed by PeggyRae Johnson, the play will be staged Saturday, January 23, at 7:30 p.m. in the Mabel Brown Room of the Student Center. Admission is free, but donations will be accepted at the door and are greatly appreciated. For more information, call the Theatre and Dance Department at 603-358-2162.

In celebration of Keene State’s centennial, the Theatre and Dance Department began the year with Eleemosynary, which was honored by KCACTF as one of eight regional productions selected to be seen at the University of New Hampshire, Durham, on Tuesday, January 26, at Huddleston Hall.

With an appreciation for the art of language, Eleemosynary, which means “charitable,” provides a penetrating study of three generations of women who examine the constraints placed upon women seeking advanced education from the early 20th century through the 1980s.

Though all of them are brilliant, each experiences very different societal expectations regarding the educational possibilities available to them. Each finds her own form of escape through the metaphor of flight and ends up intensifying struggles within the family unit. This poignant, mature, artful, and comedic study of women’s educational and familial relationships highlights the human need for connections and forgiveness. Eleemosynary earned Blessing a 1997 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Writing.

The three-woman ensemble cast includes KSC’s Rebecca Holtz (‘13) of Walpole, N.H., as the grandmother, Dorothea; Kimberly Sollows (‘13) of Westford, N.H., as her daughter, Artie; and Allison Lee Relihan (‘12) of Wakefield, Mass., as the granddaughter, Echo. Understudies for the production include Molly Chase (‘11) of Manchester, N.H., and Ashley Simeone (‘12) of Whitefield, N.H. Chris Bell (‘11) of Higganum, Conn., is stage manager; Craig Deming (‘10) of Farmington, Conn., and Molly Chase (‘11) are assistant stage managers; Justin Gray (‘11) of Westford, Mass., and Matt Kohler (‘12) of Marstens Mills, Mass., are designing sound; and Eric Messier (‘12) of Manchester, N.H., is co- lighting designer.

Several Theatre and Dance Department faculty members are involved in the production: Celine Perron, set & lighting designer; Jenny Fulton, costume designer; Craig Lindsay, technical director; and Daniel Patterson, chair of the Department, is production manager.

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