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“God of Carnage” opens Friday at CLT

Alan and Annette Raleigh, left, (Mark Hazard and Cheryl Reynolds) and Veronica and Michael Novak (Michelle Vasquez-Jacobus and Roger Philippon) in “God of Carnage.” (Photo by Rachel Morin)

Community Little Theatre’s “God of Carnage,” directed by Richard Rosenberg and assistant director Celeste Philippon, opens tomorrow night at Great Falls Performing Arts Center, 30 Academy St., Auburn.

The play by Yasmina Reza with translation by Christopher Hampton opened on Broadway to rave reviews and won three Tony Awards, one being for best play.  Veronica and Michael Novak, played by Michelle Vasquez-Jacoubus and Roger Philippon, have invited Annette and Alan Raleigh, portrayed by Cheryl Reynolds and Mark Hazard, to their home to decide what should be done about their two 11-year-old sons fighting.  The Novaks and Raleighs are in for an evening they won’t forget.

The crux of the discussion is young Henry Novak has had the worst of it with two front teeth knocked out and nerve damage to an incisor tooth.  Benjamin Raleigh emerges unscathed and has done the damage armed with a stick!  Although the boys are never seen, the play revolves around them.  What to do?  Both sets of parents are determined to solve the issue in an adult manner.

As the evening progresses, fever and passion take over, and the polite conversation sinks to the lowest possible denominator. A tirade of angry words, insults, foul language and profanity is flung back and forth until all semblance of decency is gone. It is a dark comedy, after all, and the audience cannot help but laugh at the absurdity and posturing of the two “elite” couples.  The production team has added drama to the play with a set suitable for the Novak home.

The curtain will open on an upscale living room set created by Gerry Therrien and Phil Vampatella.  Carole Hodgkin, set décor, has worked her magic transforming Director Rosenberg’s vision into an attractive living room with a handsome black leather upholstered couch with matching side table and hassock.  A red carpet and touches of purple in the throw pillows and velvet side chairs add just the right finishing touch.   But it’s the backdrop of crimson red fabric with black geometric lines created by Carole that is the “wow factor” giving the room a dramatic look.

The backdrop is hung on metal frames fashioned by Dick McCann and his crew at McCann Fabrication of New Gloucester. The men have provided many metal fabrications over the years for CLT’s productions free of charge. Completing the production team are Stefanie Lynn, producer; Brandon Chaloux, stage manager and props; Richard Martin, light designer; Derek Johnson, sound design; Rachel Morin, publicist; Ellen Hodgkin, costumer; Heather Lea, hair/makeup; and Jacynthe Jacques, lobby photos.

Tickets are $18 and $15 and may be reserved by calling the box office at 783-0958 or at   College students are offered a $10 ticket with student ID card. Curtain is at 7:30 p.m. on February 8, 9, 14 15, 16, and 2 p.m. matinees on February 10 and 17. The play runs 90 minutes without intermission; doors will open an hour before the show starts to give patrons an opportunity to socialize and visit the snack and cash bar.



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