Alan Ayckbourn’s comic morality play, “A Small Family Business,” will be produced by the Linfield Theatre Program May 7-9 and 14-16 at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 10, at 2 p.m. with special prices for all moms.
“A Small Family Business” is the story of Jack McCracken, who just received the opportunity of a lifetime. He is the new head of a family furniture business and believes he will initiate a new age of honesty and integrity. He quickly learns that everyone else involved in the enterprise has a vested interest in maintaining business as usual, rife with dishonesty and deceit. “A Small Family Business” premiered at the National Theatre in London, England, in 1987 and received a revival production at the National in June 2014.
Under the direction of Janet Gupton, resident director and associate professor of theatre arts, students and a Linfield professor will star in this comedic play. Gupton said that an interesting twist is that Rich Emery, professor of accounting at Linfield, will play the role of Ken Ayres, the father-in-law who built the family business from the ground up and is now turning over the company to his son-in-law.
Other actors in the play include seniors Nicholas Granato as Jack McCracken and Jeremy Odden as Desmond Harriet; junior Travis McKenna as Cliff; sophomores Naomi Boydston as Tina, Heidie Ambrose as Samantha, Madilyn Bechtel as Anita, Lillie Moses as Harriet, Raisa Mlynski as Yvonne Doggett and Murphy Jackson as Benedict Hough; freshmen Geoffrey Rath as Roy Ruston and Marcos Galvez as the Rivetti brothers; and international student Lise Grimelund-Kjelsen as Poppy.
The scenic design is by senior art major Kelsey Garrett and features a two-story house interior that serves as the setting for the play.
“The set is a daunting endeavor for a seasoned designer, let alone a student who is designing for a realized production for the first time,” Gupton said. “However, Kelsey is a gifted designer and artist, and her design is equally impressive.”
Other students involved in the production include seniors Daniel Bradley as the sound designer, Rhianna Bennett as stage manager, Mackensie Sempert as assistant costume designer, and sophomore Joella Cordell as properties mistress.
Lighting design is by Ty Marshall, professor of theatre arts, director of theatre and resident designer. Technical direction is by Rob Vaughn and costume design is by Laurel Peterson.
Ayckbourn is one of Great Britain’s most prolific playwrights, having written more than 70 full-length plays. This production is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.
Tickets are $9 for full price; $7 for seniors (62+) and Linfield faculty and staff (two tickets per ID); and $5 for students (any age, any school, one ticket per ID); with a $2 discount on all tickets on opening night. Tickets for all moms will be $5 for the Sunday matinee on Mother’s Day. Seating is reserved. Tickets will go on sale April 28 and will be available at http://www.linfield.edu/arts or by phone, or at the Marshall Theatre Box Office. Located in the lobby of Ford Hall, the box office is open Tuesday through Friday from 3 to 5 p.m., and until 7:30 p.m. on performance days. The box office will also be open May 9 and 16 from 3 to 7:30 p.m. and on May 10 from noon to 2 p.m. The box office is closed Mondays. The Marshall Theatre is fully accessible.
For more information, call 503-883-2292.