EPAC celebrates LGBTQIA+ voices this month

By on June 5, 2019

 

Ephrata Performing Arts Center’s EPAC on the Edge staged reading series returns this month. Back for its third season, EPAC on the Edge celebrates the LGBTQIA+ communities with readings of three different full-length plays that showcase the growing representation of these communities in the American theater.

“The Boys in the Band,” by Mart Crowley, directed by EPAC Artistic Director Edward R. Fernandez, first shocked mainstream audiences in 1968 with its frank depiction of gay men on stage. Forty years later, this play, about a group of friends celebrating a birthday before their evening, takes an unexpected turn, continues to move crowds with its witty dialogue and pointed observations on living life as a gay man in the counterculture era. This play will be performed June 21 at 8 p.m.

“Significant Other,” by Joshua Harmon, directed by EPAC on the Edge Producer Alexander P. Bannon, asks us “Is platonic and familial love enough?” In the show, first produced by the Roundabout Theatre Company in 2015, we follow Jordan, a single gay man in New York City, as his three closest girlfriends begin to marry and start families. Jordan’s struggle to find love while balancing life and supporting his friends eventually comes to a tipping point in this hilarious and heartbreaking piece. This work will be performed June 22 at 8 p.m.

“Bull in a China Shop,” by Bryna Turner, directed by local director Cody Allyn Page, closes the festival and blurs the lines between the turn of the 20th century and today. An excavation of queer history, the play, inspired by the real letters between Mary Woolley and Jeannette Marks, spans the time from 1899 to 1937. “Bull in a China Shop” depicts the universal story of how we work together, fight together, and grow old together with the one we love. This play will be performed June 23 at 2 p.m.

The festival features local actors Niki Boyer Swatski, Lauren Adkins, Bailey Ammons, Bob Breen, Ngoc Bui, Sean Deffley, Brad DeLeone, Cheri Paige Fogleman, Zander Gawn, Kathleen Godwin, Zach Haines, Brendan Kincade, Rogan Motter, Amber Nicole, Emily Rhinehart, Tim Riggs, Megan Riggs, Michael Roman, Gabrielle Sheller, Nick Smith, and Jordon Ross Weinhold.

The event will run Friday, June 21, through Sunday, June 23, at the Sharadin Bigler Theatre. Tickets cost $15 per performance for adults and $5 for students. A festival package, with tickets to all three shows, is available for $40. All seats are general admission. Purchase tickets online at ephrataperformingartscenter.com, or call the box office at 717-733-7966.

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