2014-2015 Theatre Season at Ohio State Newark Announced
The Glass Menagerie
by Tennessee Williams
Production dates: Nov. 13-16, 20-23, 2014
Audition dates: Sept. 8 & 9
Play summary: The play is introduced to the audience by Tom, the narrator and protagonist, as a memory play based on his recollection of his mother Amanda and his sister Laura.
Amanda's husband abandoned the family long ago. Although a survivor and a pragmatist, the sometimes voluble Amanda yearns for the comforts and admiration she remembers from her days as a fêted Southern belle. She worries especially about the future of her daughter Laura, a young woman with a limp and tremulous insecurity about the outside world. Tom works in a shoe warehouse doing his best to support them. He chafes under the banality and boredom of everyday life and struggles to write, while spending much of his spare time going to the movies — or so he says — at all hours of the night.
Amanda is obsessed with finding a suitor (or, as she puts it, a "gentleman caller") for Laura, whose shyness helped lead her to drop out of high school and a subsequent secretarial course, and who spends most of her time with her collection of little glass animals. Pressed by his mother to help find someone, Tom eventually invites an acquaintance from work named Jim home for dinner. Laura realizes that Jim is the boy she was attracted to in high school and has thought of since — though the relationship between the shy Laura and the "most likely to succeed" Jim was never more than a fairly distant teasing acquaintanceship. Initially, Laura is so overcome by shyness that she is unable to join the others at dinner. After dinner, though, Jim and Laura are left alone by candlelight in the living room, waiting for the electricity to be restored (Tom, planning to escape his family, has failed to pay the power bill). During their long scene together, Jim diagnoses Laura's inferiority complex, urges her to think better of herself, and kisses her. Jim and Laura then share a quiet dance, and he accidentally brushes against the glass menagerie, knocking the glass unicorn to the floor and breaking off its horn. After Jim reveals that he is already engaged to be married, Laura asks him to take the broken unicorn as a gift and he then leaves. When Amanda learns that Jim is engaged she assumes Tom knew and lashes out at him.
As Tom speaks at the end of the play, it becomes clear that he left home soon afterward and did not return. In Tom's final speech, he bids farewell to his mother and sister, telling Laura to blow out the candles, which she does as the play ends.
A drama by David Lindsay-Abaire (winner of Pulizer Prize 2007)
Production dates: April 9-12, 16-19, 2015
Audition dates: Feb. 2 & 3, 2015
Play summary: Becca and Howie Corbett are a happily married couple whose perfect world is forever changed when their young son, Danny, is killed by a car. Becca, an executive-turned-stay-at-home mother, tries to redefine her existence in a surreal landscape of well-meaning family and friends. Painful, poignant, and often funny, Becca's experiences lead her to find solace in a mysterious relationship with a troubled young comic-book artist, Jason - the teenage driver of the car that killed Danny. Becca's fixation with Jason pulls her away from memories of Danny, while Howie immerses himself in the past, seeking refuge in outsiders who offer him something Becca is unable to give. The Corbetts, both adrift, make surprising and dangerous choices as they choose a path that will determine their fate.