Press-Republican

Out & About

September 27, 2012

Centaur stage lineup set

MONTREAL — A revealing family reunion, a 1950s crime drama, an eclectic Irish road trip and more take to the Centaur stage beginning next week.

‘AUGUST’

First up is “August, an Afternoon in the Country” by Quebec playwright Jean Marc Dalpe with translation by Maureen Labonte. During a heat wave, “August” begins with celebratory good intentions as Monique and her fiancé commemorate their engagement on the family farm. Things really heat up when four generations of Monique’s relatives have a few things to say during the course of this family reunion.

“It’s an all-Montreal company and a gorgeous play about the transitions of four generations of women who all share a rural farming background,” said Roy Surette, artistic director. “They’re trying to face the modern world and redefine themselves.”

The cast ranges in age from an 18-year-old girl to an 80-year-old great-grandmother. The play takes place in real time “on a porch on a hot summer day,” Surette said.

“So, it feels like you’re eavesdropping,” Surette said. “It’s very Chekhovian with great humor.”

“August” is presented Tuesday, Oct. 2, through Sunday, Oct. 28.

‘GOOD PEOPLE’

Next is a trip to Southie, the hard-working Boston Irish neighborhood, as the Centaur presents “Good People” by Pulitzer prizewinner David Lindsey-Abaire.

When Southie resident Margie loses her job at the dollar store, she visits an old flame who has moved on up to the more affluent Chestnut Hill.

Surette directs the Montreal version.

First presented by the Manhattan Theatre Club in 2011, the lead role of Margie Walsh garnered actress Francis McDormand a Tony Award for best actress.

“It’s got a colorful Irish element to it,” Surette said.

Surette and actress Johanna Nutter, who plays the role of Margie in the Centaur production, actually took a road trip to Southie to get a feel for the neighborhood.

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