Who’s Who: The Norman Conquests

Plays and Events |July 18, 2016

We’ve followed these couples all around their English country house; from the living room in Living Together at Northern Stage to the dining room in Table Manners at Dorset Theatre Festival, and now to the garden here in Weston. This week, along with Director Michael Berresse and the Norman Conquests creative team, they launch the last play of Alan Ayckbourn’s acclaimed comic trilogy.

Round and Round the Garden is Norman’s final conquest. Whether you’ve been along for the ride or you’re coming in fresh, these six are as irresistible as Ayckbourn’s brilliant plays. Come and see!

Meet Reg & Sarah…

Sarah considers herself the head of the family, desperately trying to hold things together, despite emotional crescendos and a rigid sense of decorum. “Some find her frightening but I find Sarah incredibly satisfying to play. She’s an emotional thunderstorm with a wicked sense of taste,” says Caitlin Clouthier of her fiery character. Sarah’s husband Reg, on the other hand, couldn’t be more different. Mark Light-Orr plays Reg, with a carefree, go-with-the-flow attitude that drives Sarah crazy. While he’s truly well-intentioned, he almost always inadvertently makes the stressful family situations worse. “What makes Reg truly funny is that we can all identify with him; I think that’s what makes all the couples in these plays so funny. You laugh at them. Then you find yourself laughing because you realize that may be you up there on stage!”

Meet Tom & Annie…

Annie’s been living at her family home, caring for her ailing mom when she meets Tom, the local veterinarian. She is quite fond of Tom, but totally frustrated with his inability to propose…anything. Jenni Putney plays Annie beautifully. “She is the ‘put upon’ younger sister who really wishes her neighbor Tom would make a move. She has been holding a torch for him for years but he doesn’t seem to notice.” Poor Tom. Hard not to like him. His intentions are sweet and kind, but his social awkwardness keeps him from making any romantic progress. David Mason explains, “A competent veterinarian, Tom communicates more easily with animals than with people, which creates endless struggles as he tries to navigate his love for Annie and how to let her know of his true feelings.”

Meet Norman & Ruth…

Loving Norman feels he comes in very low on his wife’s list of priorities. To boot, he wants to make everyone happy. “Norman is a lovable loser – an assistant librarian who can’t get ahead – and who is desperate to love and be loved,” says Gallagher. Ruth is quick-witted and ambitious, kind-hearted. A bit (though we cannot blame her) superior. Ashton Heyl says, “In a lot of ways, Ruth is quite content with Norman, as there’s no gray area with him. He makes her laugh and I think she vicariously lives through him a bit; his zany, broad gestures deeply amuse her – as long as he doesn’t go too far.”

Won’t you join us…at the theatre?

The Norman Conquests Cast

From Left to Right: As Ruth, Norman, Sarah, Reg, Jenni, and Tom…Ashton Heyl, Richard Gallagher, Caitlin Clouthier, Mark Light-Orr, Jenni Putney, and David Mason. Photo Courtesy: Northern Stage.

Check out Jim Lowe’s “Round and Round the Garden” preview here. Find tickets online, or through the Box Office: (802) 824-5288. Come on over and welcome Norman to Weston!


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