The University Theatre presents

The House of Blue Leaves

by John Guare

October 3-7, 2001

Directed by
J. K. Curry

Scenic Design by
Mary Wayne-Thomas

Costume Design by
Cynthia Gendrich

Lighting Design by
Frank Ludwig

Sound Design by
Douglas W. Brown

Stage Manager
Sarah Wynne*


Ryan Fries

Joey Picard*

Julia Schmidt

Erin Wade*

Hillary Heard*

Madeline Smith

Katie Henderson

Amber Wiley*

Scott Thompson

George Graves

Andrew Rinehart

* Member of The Anthony Aston Players



An apartment in Sunnyside, Queens, New York City
October 4, 1965





Voice and Dialect Coach
Mark Cohen

Assistant Stage Managers
Moira Dennis, Rebecca Lowry

Brent Rawls

Tara Hawks

Master Carpenter
Sarah Storminger*

Scenic Carpenters
Aaron Bokros*, Scott H. DickisonMatt Fuller*, Greg Herzog, Susan Martin*Madeline Smith, JD Stallings, Jonathan Watkins. Lauren Wilde, Michael Wright

Prop Master
Susan Martin*

Scenic Crew
Tyson Clabo, Jill DelaneyKelly Dostal, Katie Kubic, Blake Lingruen, Brian Oliveira, Katherine Pfaff, Garrett Redmond, Nathan White

Scenic Art Crew
Melanie Bonnem, Adam BrownMary Detterick, Jordan Smith, Devin Taylor

Dresser / Grip
Mary Patterson Broome, Jennifer Mathis

Costume Studio Assistants
Sarah Guthrie, Natalie HinesCourtney Lee, Andrea Leutz, Laura Maready, Tracey McKinzie, Loren Sasser, Matthew Tomko

Assistant Lighting Designer
Matt Fuller

Master Electrician
Matt Nelkin*

Electrics Crew
David Bush, Brad ComerJasdeep Dhaliwal, Michael Griffin, Zach Hamilton
Elizabeth Marterre, Charles (Mike) Morgan
Robby Perkins, Lauren Raimer, Doug Reipe
Blake Smith, Jordan Wagner

Light Board Operator
Erin King

Sound Board Operator
Maria Sherwood

Poster Design
Frank Ludwig

Jeannette Arrowood, Jeong-Hwan KangLinden Kistner, Esther Pesciotta, Sarah Schneider, Katherine Young

Assistant Box Office Manager
Ali Ayala*

Box Office & Front of House Staff
Tony Andrade, Ali Ayala, Allison Delaney, Alannah DiBona, Emily Johnson, Alexandra LeCrone, Everett Long, T.J. Peeler, Esther Pesciotta

* Member of The Anthony Aston Players


Director J.E.R. Friedenberg
Administrative Assistant Carol Lavis
Technical Director Douglas W. Brown
Costume Studio Supervisor Lisa Weller
Audience Services Coordinator Leslie Collins
Office Assistants Caroline Clear, Katie Henderson, Cambra Overend*, Amber Wiley*

Woodrow Hood
Susan Whitenight
Green Street Church
High Point University Theatre
North Carolina School of the Arts
Wagner Appliance Company
The Winston-Salem Little Theatre


Director's Note

With The House of Blue Leaves, John Guare gives us a world of dreamers. He asks us to consider our celebrity-obsessed culture, which promotes the dream of fame and fortune, but only makes it available to a few. In a published preface to the play, Guare mentions his interest in what happens when we are humiliated by our dreams. His play suggests that such humiliation may push some of us to violence and insanity. Extremely passionate pursuit of ridiculous goals can be funny-or tragic. The mixed tone of most of Guare's plays reflects not only his unique artistic sensibility, but also our experience in the world, which is rarely either entirely tragic or comic.

Guare reports that when The House of Blue Leaves was first performed in 1971 many people asked him where he got his crazy ideas. The response to the play changed in 1981 when an attempt was made on the life of the Pope. Guare noted that audiences no longer had the same emotional distance from the play. An audience for a revival that Guare observed that summer "reacted as if a protective glass wall had shattered and tumbled them into the same situation as the people in the play." The change in the world of the audience was also reflected in the critical response to the 1986 Lincoln Center production of the play. Critics observed that the play was still funny as it had been fifteen years earlier, but they were more aware of the pain the characters experienced.

Our world changed again on September 11th. In the theatre department we discussed whether to continue with this planned production. Would it be insensitive to the real pain caused by recent violence to perform a comic play that includes acts of violence?

We know that our audience will bring a different perspective to the events presented on stage than we expected when we began rehearsals. We decided to carry on because we think it is important to continue to make theatre that not only provides entertainment, but that also asks us to think and to continually reexamine our values. Just a few of the questions prompted by this play: Is being on t.v. the ultimate measure of success for an individual or a cause? How well do we separate illusion from reality? What would push an individual to choose illusion even over sanity?

So, if this play gives you something to think about, terrific. If it makes you laugh, even better. Enjoy the show.

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