With no end in sight to the trend of violent, sometimes deadly incidents happening in our schools, teachers, parents, administrators and students all have to struggle to find the precarious balance among safety, responsibility and free expression. Johnna Adams’ two-person play Gidion’s Knot explores this conundrum in the form of a conference between a mother whose fifth-grade son has just committed suicide and the teacher who suspended him after he handed in a writing assignment that imagined horrific scenes of violence. Their tense confrontation delves deep into literary history as it raises the question of how creativity and a zero-tolerance policy can coexist, and into the ferocity of maternal love as it tries to establish whether young Gidion was a victim of bullying or a bully himself.
Maria Silverman and Laura Beth Wells star in a production of Gidion’s Knot, directed by John Sowle, that opened last week at the Bridge Street Theatre in Catskill. It continues for one more weekend, with shows at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, May 19 through 21, and a 2 p.m. matinée on Sunday, May 22.
Bridge Street has a busy season ahead, with the Blue Horse Repertory Company coming in next Saturday, May 28 at 8 p.m. to present Leading Ladies: A Night of Readings of Comedies for Women, directed by Flo Hayle. The program includes three Christopher Durang pieces: Mrs. Sorkin, Medea and an excerpt from Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All for You; three excerpts from Vital Signs and two from Talking with…, by Jane Martin; and Charles George’s When Shakespeare’s Ladies Meet. Tickets for Leading Ladies also cost $20 and $10.
Moving into June, Bridge Street Theatre’s Songbook Series brings cabaret to Catskill on Saturday, June 4 with An Evening with Julie Gold. The series continues with Mark Nadler in Let’s Misbehave: A Cole Porter Soirée on Saturday, August 6 and Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasano in Helluva Town: A New York Soundtrack on Saturday, October 1.
From June 9 to 19, the drama series continues with Dream Child: The Trial of Alice in Wonderland by Roxanne Fay. The Tavern, a comedy/melodrama by George M. Cohan that Dorothy Parker loved, runs from September 15 to 25. From October 13 to 23, there’ll be a production of Jim Helsinger’s one-performer stage adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Gothic classic, Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus. Holiday Memories, adapted by Russell Vandenbroucke from Truman Capote’s memoir, rounds out the season from December 8 to 18.
Tickets for all shows – except for “Pay What You Can Previews” – cost $20 general admission, $10 for youth under age 21. To purchase, visit http://bridgest.org or call (800) 838-3006. For more info, visit http://bridgest.org/whatsup.htm or call (518) 943-3818. The Bridge Street Theatre is located at 44 West Bridge Street in Catskill.