Community Theater Corner:
BLOOMFIELD HILLS – “Two by Two” is a fresh retelling of the Biblical story of Noah who, at the age of 600, was told by God to build the Ark. That command is only the first of Noah’s many daunting challenges on a journey filled with animals, family squabbles, inspiration and lots of love as he leads his family to and through the 40 days and 40 nights of the Flood. The audience will discover along with Noah that being chosen by God for great things does not necessarily simplify the tasks.
The story of Noah and the Ark set to music, “Two by Two” will be presented by St. Dunstan’s Theatre Guild of Cranbrook March 23-25 and 29-31, in the midst of the volunteer organization’s 75th season. With music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Martin Charnin, and book by Peter Stone, the musical is based on Clifford Odets’ play “The Flowering Peach.”
An eight-member St. D’s ensemble cast will build the Ark on stage each night, as they tell the story of their family — led by the patriarch Noah –and live their struggle with domestic relationships and the Covenant Noah has made with God.
Noah (Mark Walters) speaks frequently with God, bosses and bickers with his family but is completely devoted to his loving, patient and long-suffering wife, Esther (Pam Richards). Their three sons are Shem, landlord and miser (Brian Jones), married to the annoying Leah of few words (Elizabeth Robinson); Ham, (Jimmy Helberg) without ambition and married to sweet Rachel (Becky Fisher), who he doesn’t love; and Japheth (John Nowaczyk), Noah’s youngest son who must be married to go “two by two” on the Ark. Throw in Goldie (Beth Landry), the girl from the Temple of the Golden Ram and potential wife for Japheth, and it’s good fun from The Good Book, filled with moments of inspiration and lots of laughter.
Co-directed by Gary Lee Temple and Barbara Anne Gowans, who is also the musical director, choreographed by Debi Bernstein Siegel and produced by Jane Dabbs, it’s an interesting, thoughtful and moving show, with an ingenious set designed by Robert S. Raisch.
The musical will be presented March 23 and 24 at 8 p.m., March 25 at 2 p.m., March 29, 30 and 31 at 8 p.m.
Tickets are general admission and cost $18 each for adults and $16 each for students and seniors. Tickets are also $16 for groups of 20 or more. The production is the ideal outing for church groups or “Red-Hatters,” yet it has appeal for all ages and religions.
St. Dunstan’s is located at 400 Lone Pine Road between Cranbrook and Lahser Roads in Bloomfield Hills. A free shuttle service is available from the Christ Church Cranbrook parking lot.
Reservations can be made by calling 248-737-3587 or visiting http://www.StDunstansTheatre.com.