Wallace State Theatre putting modern spin on “Our Town”

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Haley Johnson, left, of Birmingham, and Trey Moody of Hartselle, rehearse a scene from “Our Town” for an upcoming production of the Thornton Wilder classic at Wallace State Community College, Hanceville. The pair portrays the roles of Emily Webb and George Gibbs.

HANCEVILLE – Wallace State Community College’s Theatre Department is preparing for its production of “Our Town,” scheduled for March 9-12 at the Betty Leeth Haynes Theatre on the Hanceville campus.

Lauren Salerno, head of the WSCC Theatre Department, says their production is a modern approach to the “circle of life” tale from Thornton Wilder who won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama for “Our Town.” First produced and published in 1938, “Our Town” has become an American classic and is his most renowned and most frequently performed plays, according to The Thornton Wilder Society.

The plot of the three-act play follows the happenings in the small village of Grover’s Corner, a fictional town based on Peterborough, New Hampshire, and centering on the Gibbs and Webb families. Specifically, the play follows the ups and downs in the lives of George Gibbs and Emily Webb.

The Wallace State casts includes: Duke Cleghorn, Cheyenne Smith, Hannah Stringer, Hannah Crider and Whitney Heaton, all of Cullman; Julie Newton, Patrick Jimenez, and Matthew Newton, all of Hanceville; Trey Moody and Samantha Drake of Hartselle; John Bullock and Lesley O’Donnell of Hayden; Haley Johnson of Birmingham; Trawick Lowe of Eva; Tanner Muncey of Gardendale; Lauren Jones of Arab; Aladie Howse of Fairview; and Mary Lauren Davis of Florence.

Critics have praised Wilder’s “Our Town” for “reminding the audience of how precious daily life is, because it determines our true reality…our enduring identity is not derived from the things and the events because they are familiar and repeated, but from our ever-new, ever-fresh relation to them.” (Donald Haberman, Our Town: An American Play, 1989)

“Our Town” will be presented at 7 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, March 9-11 and 2 p.m., Sunday, March 12. Admission is $10 for adults and $5 students. Purchase tickets at the door or in advance by contacting Stefany Pate at 256-352-8277 or stefany.pate@wallacestate.edu.