Connecting with the characters in The Glass Menagerie

Tonight, I attended a rehearsal for The Glass Menagerie, which will be presented by the Theatre Company of Saugus this August!  There were wonderful things happening.  The scene being rehearsed involved two characters, Tom and Amanda, portrayed by Kyle Raiche and Wendy Lippe.  The Glass Menagerie is such a well-written show and the text stands on its own, but when you add a director with a clear vision as well as a great cast, you are golden.  I can honestly say that I witnessed both of these things last night, and I am already so excited for opening night.  Knowing there is still over a month of rehearsal time, I was amazed to notice such focused actors; they rehearsed the same part of a scene five times, and I watched it improve in quality each time. The actors sank more and more into the characters.  Each character in this classic play written by Tennessee Williams has multiple layers, and the actors that I spoke with have a perfect sense of where to go with their character’s journey throughout the show, as does their director (Lexi Deschene).

Without giving too much away, I love the way the space is being set up, because I think it is a way for the audience to be even more connected with the characters.  I promise that the audience will feel like they are part of the action, and will really be able to connect with the story, which, as an avid theatre goer, is all I ask.  I want to be able to connect with a great performance.  The show takes place in a small apartment, so the idea of having the audience surround the action has me very excited to see the play start to finish.  Tom (Kyle Raiche) has a special role in this piece, as the narrator who speaks directly to the audience at points in the show.  He talks about his feelings, which rarely happens in the Wingfield household, so it’s great to hear Tom speak to the audience about his life.  Amanda (Wendy Lippe) is also a great character, and the audience will see the emotions she tries to hide from her family.

Being a Tennessee Williams play, there is already a solid foundation of a great script and characters, and the Theatre Company of Saugus is successfully bringing it to life with their actors.  Jessica Stockton was stage-managing, which is awesome!  I was not able to see the other amazing performers last night, but am excited and grateful to make more trips to rehearsals. Please keep up with The Glass Menagerie at TCS. I will continue with fun interviews and blogs throughout the process, and I am excited to be involved! Keep up with the blog!

The Glass Menagerie is being performed August 9th – 11th and 16th – 18th, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 PM and Sundays at 2:00 PM.  The performances will be held at the East Saugus United Methodist Church, 85 Chestnut Street in Saugus, Massachusetts.

-Nathan G-P

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