Contact: Allison Benner, College Relations Associate – Media, 610-740-3790


Cast Explores Age-old Man v. Woman Dynamic in Darkly Comic, Modern Staging of Greek Classic

Allentown, PA (August 31, 2007) – The Cedar Crest College Stage Company cordially invites theatre-goers to the (almost) wedding of the year when it opens its 2007-2008 season with Big Love, by Charles Mee. The show will run from September 27 – 30, 2007 in the Samuels Theatre.

As with most of his plays, Mee draws on an existing text for Big Love, in this case The Suppliant Women by Aeschylus, and radically transforms it into a contemporary, darkly humorous and decidedly theatrical show about gender dynamics and perceptions of love.

As the play begins, the audience learns that 50 sisters have fled to a villa in Italy from Greece where a contract would force them to marry their 50 cousins. But the abandoned would-be grooms refuse to give them up without a fight and pursue the runaway brides. The plot escalates as both sides fight for what they want culminating in a true battle of the sexes.

"This show gives our students the opportunity to dig in to some very complex characters and convey the timeless necessity of humankind to love and be loved within the context of Charles Mee's unique vision as a playwright," says Tim Brown, director of the production and assistant professor of performing arts at Cedar Crest. "Big Love is visually striking, physically demanding and just a little bit off. But that makes the process so much more interesting.

Mee himself has said, 'I like plays that are not too neat, too finished, too presentable. My plays are broken, jagged, filled with sharp edges, filled with things that take sudden turns, careen into each other, smash up, veer off in sickening turns. That feels good to me. It feels like my life. It feels like the world.'

In this way, Big Love presents some of the most familiar male and female stereotypes and literally smashes them up against each other to see what will happen."

The cast of Big Love includes Chelsea Toth, Heather Pullins, Michelle Tetreault, Leni Johnson, Yumiko Sugawara, Ralph Montesano, Christopher Pizolato, Nick Martorelli and David Serfass.

This show contains adult themes. Big Love runs September 27, 28 and 29, 2007 at 8:00 p.m. and September 30, 2007 at 2:00 p.m. in the Samuels Theatre of the Tompkins College Center. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students and seniors and can be obtained by calling the Cedar Crest College Box Office at 610-606-4608.

For more information, please contact the College Relations Office at 610-740-3790.


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