'Our Town' Hits the Stage at Asbury

WILMORE, Ky. — The classic story of how simple moments become profound will take the stage at Asbury University with the production of Thornton Wilder’s celebrated “Our Town.”

The play will take place in the Greathouse Theatre, located in the Miller Center for Communication Arts, at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 14-16. Tickets are $5 each and available online and from the box office in the Miller Center.

Directed by Asbury graduate Janelle Gore ’11 and cast almost entirely with current Asbury students, “Our Town” is a three-act play that takes place in fictional Grover’s Corner, N.H., and tells the story of ordinary people experiencing an ordinary life. As one character declares early in the play, “Nice town, y’know what I mean? Nobody very remarkable ever come out of it, s’far as we know.”

However, it is the very simplicity of the play that lends it power and an enduring relevance that has kept the piece on stage around the world since its initial 1937 performance.

“The theme and message are so timeless,” Gore said. “They apply to every person, in every town, in every time. With things happening in our world right now... I believe the theme of ‘Our Town’ is something people need to be reminded of.”

When it was first performed, “Our Town” challenged theatrical standards of the day with its empty stage setting. The opening lines of the play instruct, “No curtain. No scenery,” leaving the audience to furnish the world of Grover’s Corner from their own imaginations. The state-of-the-art Greathouse Theatre, a flexible black-box performance space, provides an ideal backdrop for the play.

“I’m keeping to the minimalist presentation for the most part, but there will be some surprises here and there,” Gore said. “It’s definitely a fun thing for the audience to be a part of. It’s a very intimate setting, with action happening all around you nearly all the time.”

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