One act play "Mothers" premieres Feb 13th
Feb 03, 2015 08:02PM ● Published by David Saniter
Members of BDACT’s cast, representing the larger Beaver Dam area, include Marie Steffen, Doylestown; Kyla Peterson, Doylestown; Carla Woebbeking, Fox Lake; Peggy Sue Langer, Columbus; Stephanie Kempka, Waupun; and Barbara Vockroth, James McMillan, Jan Sutter, and Bonnie Franke, Beaver Dam.
On February 13 and 14, the Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre will offer a STAGE II show featuring an original one-act play plus a vocal segment by three LocoVocal performers and BDACT’s 2015 Singing Star winner. The play, “Mothers,” written by Annette Kamps and sponsored by Dr. Jen Espenscheid, will premiere locally, prior to its entry in the 2015 Wisconsin Association of Community Theatre’s one-act play contest at the Ringling Theater in Baraboo, February 19-22. Members of BDACT’s cast, representing the larger Beaver Dam area, include Marie Steffen, Doylestown; Kyla Peterson, Doylestown; Carla Woebbeking, Fox Lake; Peggy Sue Langer, Columbus; Stephanie Kempka, Waupun; and Barbara Vockroth, James McMillan, Jan Sutter, and Bonnie Franke, Beaver Dam.
“Mothers,” sponsored by Dr. Jen Espenscheid of the Espenscheid Chiropractic Clinic, is a one-act adaptation of “Mother’s Curtain,” a full-length play written by Kamps and presented by BDACT in 2012. Although she said it was challenging to re-write the drama within the structure of a one-act, she believes that this revelation about domestic abuse through nine distinctive characters holds true. “Although having nine characters in a short play is a bit unusual, each of them are integral to the purpose of the story and their impact on the protagonist. My goal for this new version was to limit the focus while engaging the audience in a meaningful story.”
The drama, including a bit of humor, brings forth the characters’ past and present ordeals with domestic abuse. Kamps said, “The cast’s convincing portrayals demonstrate a real commitment to this critical issue. Theater is an ideal format to realize the far-reaching effects that are difficult to identify and address. We get devastating examples of violence and abuse in the media every day, but the consequences for so many of the victims, children and adults in our own communities, are often beyond our grasp. Our goal for this play is to intensify understanding and empathy, to personalize the experience within a safe environment, and to open the door for honest discussion and resolution. Hopefully, taking it to the state contest will also further that goal.”
For the state contest, BDACT will compete with six other community theaters, including Baraboo, La Crosse, Sun Prairie, Verona, Wauwatosa, and Kettle Moraine. Kamps, also the director of the play, said, “This is a great opportunity for BDACT participants to interact with other community theater groups, learn more about theater, and expand state awareness for our own Beaver Dam theater.” She explained that the contest offers some unique challenges. “The contest rules limit the show to one hour and require stage set-up and take-down within a ten minute framework for each. Since our play is an interior scene, we need to create a room and its furnishings within those parameters.” She said the expectations require a well-trained crew that includes the cast to preset everything within a ten by ten foot area, ready to set the scene. Stage crew members are Roy Johnson, Beaver Dam, and Ann Taurick and Gary Taurick, Columbus. The conceptual set design by Jerry Kamps is implemented by Mary Colstad Miller, Eileen Goodman, Roy Johnson, and Wally Priewe. Board member Scott Eberle is the sound operator and James Steffen is the tech director and lights operator. Bonnie Franke, a cast member, is also the stage manager.
Following the play and after intermission, LocoVocal women vocalists Jenny Addison, Cheryl Zeman and Tanya Diggins, and BDACT’s 2015 Singing Star Aryanna Barudin will perform several relevant contemporary songs. General admission tickets for the Beaver Dam showing on February 13 and 14, 7:30 PM, are $6.00 at Rechek’s Food Pride. Profits will support the costs of sets, registration, and travel for the WACTFest contest. The play is PG 13 rated.