UW-Green Bay Theatre and Dance will present its next mainstage production, Communicating Doors, beginning Friday, April 25 at the University Theatre in Theatre Hall.
“Communicating Doors is a play by a very famous and prolific playwright named Alan Ayckbourn,” said Director and Associate Prof. John Mariano. “And his plays are always really well structured — great stories, great characters; he writes wonderful dialogue. He really is one of the world’s premiere playwrights.”
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Described as “an intricate time traveling comic thriller,” Communicating Doors is suspenseful yet humorous, Mariano said.
“When he was writing it, he said he was thinking about a mix of ‘Psycho’ and ‘Back to the Future.’ ” Mariano said. “It’s kind of a murder-suspense story in the Hitchcock vein, but it’s funny. It’s about an old, dying man who wants to atone for a life of crime by confessing, and so he hires a prostitute to smuggle his confession out to try to get it past the other people who are complicit in his crimes. And she ends up traveling back in time and is given the opportunity to try to prevent the crimes from happening.”
Stephanie Frank plays the prostitute, Poopay Dayseer. She’s enjoyed working on both her character and the show.
“It’s very exciting; there’s lots of twists and turns and you never really know what is going to happen,” Frank said. “But at the same time this show has a ton of heart. All the characters are so authentic and so real that I think that adds a lot to the story. And that’s a big part of why I enjoy it so much.”
Communicating Doors has presented challenges, as well as opportunities, for its cast of six, Mariano said.
“It’s set in England, so they’re all doing dialects. One of our actors is actually from England so we have a wringer,” he said with a laugh, “but everyone else has had to work on that dialect. So it’s another sort of added extra component. So it’s a very challenging play — the characters are complex and a lot goes on in the play, so it’s a real challenge for the six actors that are in it.”
The show runs April 25-26 and May 1-3. Tickets are available online or by calling (920) 465-2400.
“It’s a terrific story, great characters,” Mariano said. “I think it should have a very strong audience appeal. It should be fun to watch.”