Dramatic Repertory Company
On Stage

The Mother

Performance Times

Fri. March 6 @7:30pm – SOLD OUT!
Sat. March 7 @7:30pm – SOLD OUT!
Sun. March 8 @7:30pm

Wed. March 11 @7:30pm** – SOLD OUT!
Thurs. March 12 @7:30pm

** Discount Wednesdays

FREE for 25 & Under with ID

NOLAN ELLSWORTHNOLAN ELLSWORTH (Son) is an actor, teaching artist, cartoonist, and proud Mainer. He is awed and honored to be working with DRC, to be a part of this ensemble, and to be sharing this story. Nolan has also acted with the Portland Stage education team (As You Like It; A Midsummer Night's Dream), STAGES Youth Theater (The Cardboard Boat; The Songbird), Fenix Theatre Co (Eurydice), and PortFringe. He is a co-creator of the local land-sea adventure Aardvark Boat Tours! and the freshly hatched theater company Stick-tü-itive, Inc!

MARY FRASERMARY FRASER (Mother After). Mary is so, so, SO grateful for the opportunity to work with DRC, Lisa, and a phenomenal group of lovely people on Lynne Connor’s thoughtful and complex play. Mary is a member of Acorn's Naked Shakespeare ensemble and happily fires off a sonnet at the drop of a hat. She has performed locally with the Maine Playwrights Festival, Mad Horse Theater, Heartwood Theater, Storm Warnings Rep, and Pie Man Theater. Mary's regular gig is at the University of New England where she hopes she is a pretty convincing Director of Student Academic Support. She lives in Portland with her amazing husband and daughter, a persnickety cat, and a garden that gets a little bigger every year.

ROBBIE HARRISONROBBIE HARRISON (Announcer, Chris McFarland, Brendan, Brendan's Father, Bad Moms HOF Host) is a local actor, educator, and born-again pianist. Favorite roles include Suspects in Murder for Two (Theater at Monmouth), Sir Andrew Aguecheek in Twelfth Night (Camden Shakespeare Festival), and Dorante in The Liar (The Theater Project). In Portland, Robbie is a member of the Naked Shakespeare Ensemble and teaches seventh grade drama at Waynflete School. He has trained with Shakespeare &: Company in Lenox, MA, and studied clown and puppeteering at Teatromuseo del Títere y el Payaso in Valparaíso, Chile. Robbie is excited to return to Lynne Conner's work after assistant stage managing The Theater Project's production of Nina, also by Conner, in 2016.

ABIGAIL KILLEENABIGAIL KILLEEN* (Mother Before). This is Abigail's third show with Dramatic Rep (A Bright New Boise and Sofonisba) and she is delighted to be back! Other Portland-based work includes at Portland Stage: The Clean House, Babette's Feast, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Love/Sick and A Christmas Carol; for PSC's Studio Series: she co-produced and performed in the solo show The Amish Project; at Good Theater Doll's House Part 2 (BWW Best Actress Nomination), The May Queen, Death by Design, and Next Fall (Holly); Uncle Vanya and Nina at The Theater Project, and Macbeth and Hamlet with Fenix. New York credits include the Off-Broadway transfer of Babette's Feast (Off-Broadway Alliance nomination, New York Magazine Critic's Pick) The Merchant of Venice and Everything That Rises Must Converge (Compagnia de' Colombari) the NY International Fringe (Moritz von Stuelpenagel, dir.) and Naked Angels (David Dalton, dir.) Abigail teaches acting at Bowdoin College, and is a member of the National Alliance of Acting Teachers.

Michela MicalizioMichela Micalizio (Jessica Bakker-Shaw and Sandy, Brendan's Mom) has never been in a DRC show, so this is her first one. She just moved to Portland after graduating BU CFArts and she studied acting there so she's acting here. She recently appeared in Fenix Theater's A Midsummer Night's Dream in Deering Oaks Park, and Elephant And Piggie at the Children’s Museum and Theater of Maine. She has a snake named Cowboy, he's not here though. Go online please and sign a petition for gun control: https://sign.moveon.org/petitions/gun-control-now-1

DAVID PENCEDAVID PENCE (Father) is so pleased to be appearing for the first time with DRC. A founding member of the Obie-Award winning performance and media company The Builders Association, David has performed with them in Master Builder, The White Album, Jump Cut (Faust), Alladeen, Avanti, Super Vision, Jet Lag 2010, and House/Divided, and has taught at Builders' residencies at New York University and Theaterhaus Gessnerallee, Zurich. His voice is featured in Diller + Scofidio's "Indigestion" and sound installations by Ben Rubin including "America on the Move" (Smithsonian). In the last five years, David has written three plays-The Next Best Thing, Verge of Tears, and Eyes Averted. Since 2001, he has hosted the weekly music show "Radio Junk Drawer" (www.wmpg.org).

MOLLY W. BRYANT ROBERTSMOLLY W. BRYANT ROBERTS (Dr. Morgan Burkholder, Attorney Lee) is a fortunate soul, all the more so for having yet another chance to work with Dramatic Rep. She is thrilled to return to the stage after a two-year hiatus, and cannot think of a better opportunity. Some of her favorite roles (not to be mistaken with best) include Louise in Always, Patsy Cline, Olivia in Twelfth Night, Lois in Wonder of the World, Maggie in After the Fall, Ophelia in Hamlet, and Sarah in the feature film 2.

* Member of Actors' Equity Association,
the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers
in the United States

LYNNE CONNER (Playwright) is a playwright and Professor of Theater at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Lynne's plays and adaptations have been produced at: Theatre Project (Brunswick, Maine), Main Street Theatre (Houston), Theatre-Hikes (Chicago), the Actors' Guild of Lexington (Kentucky), Quantum Theatre (Pittsburgh), Gemini Theatre (Pittsburgh), Prime Stage(Pittsburgh), Carnegie Mellon University, Smith College, William and Mary College, Loyola Marymount, Slippery Rock University, Point Park University and the University of Pittsburgh Repertory Theatre (among others). UNSEX ME HERE (created with choreographer Stephanie Martinez) premiered as part of the Charlotte Ballet's 2019 Innovative Works festival in February 2019. THE MOTHER is a 2018 and 2019 O'Neill National Playwrights Conference semi-finalist. Her play about Rachel Carson, IN THE GARDEN OF LIVE FLOWERS (co-written with Attilio Favorini), won the 2002 Kennedy Center National Playwriting Award and an honorable mention prize in the 2002 Jane Chambers Playwriting Award contest and is published by Dramatic Publishing Company. NINA won the Gemini Theater New Play Festival competition and the Smith College New Play Reading Series and was named a finalist in the Dorothy Silver Playwriting Award and the Oglebay Institute Towngate Theatre Playwriting Contest and was produced at the Theatre Project in 2016. AMERICAN HUMBUG-a political satire based on P.T. Barnum, George W. Bush and the "New American Century" ideology-received a Creative Heights grant award from the Heinz Endowments in 2007 and was produced by the Three Rivers Arts Festival (AEA special contract). In January 2013 Conner was awarded the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival Region I award for Excellence for her original adaptation of LYSISTRATA at Colby College. She was the resident playwright for Carnegie Mellon University's Interactive Theatre Company, a professional troupe performing scripts on workplace and campus life issues, for which she received a Pennsylvania Economy League Learning and Development Award and a College and University Professional Association Innovation Award. As the founding director and resident playwright of the Heinz History Center's Stages in History professional theatre company from 1996 to 1999, she wrote over fifty one-act plays, monologues and short scenes and received the Pennsylvania Federation of Museums Award of Merit/Outstanding Museum Programs in May 2000. Conner served as the Resident Dramaturg at the Pittsburgh Public Theatre and the Literary Manager at City Theatre (Pittsburgh).

LISA MULLER-JONES (Director) is honored to be working with DRC, Lynne Conner and this extraordinary ensemble of technicians, designers and actors. She is grateful to have worked as a director, actor and designer with outstanding theater companies in Maine, including The Theater Project, Mad Horse, Stone Pinhead Ensemble, Fenix Theatre Company and DRC. In addition to occasional theatrical stints, Lisa works with Mind’s Eye and Final Rune Productions as a voice artist. Originally from Chicago, she considers herself extremely lucky to be living and working in the serene and enchanted West Bath, Maine with her husband and furbabies.

Jim Thurston (Scenic Design) is thrilled to collaborate with Lynne Conner, Lisa Muller-Jones, the DRC, and the company on the premiere of The Mother. This is such an important play for our time and the process of staging it has been very rewarding. Jim is the resident designer of the Department of Theater and Dance at Colby College. He teaches scenography, interactive digital media, and architectural imaging. He holds a Masters of Fine Arts in design for the stage from Northwestern University's School of Communication. Jim's specialties include scenic/light/projection design and interactive performance media for the stage. His current research investigates the intersection between creativity, innovation, and aesthetic change in scenography for contemporary performance. He has designed over 150 productions in professional and academic contexts. This is his first production with the DRC.

Christine Nilles (Costume Design) is a costume designer, fiber artist and illustrator. She has exhibited her cloth sculptures and fiber art in galleries across the United States and has won many awards, most notably twice for The Arkansas Arts Center's 'Toys Designed by Artists' competition. Her work is in the Arkansas Arts Center Foundation Collection. Christine has designed costumes for Colby Theater and Dance, The Waterville Opera House, Studio Theater at Portland Stage and Theater at Monmouth. She is a member of the Costume Society of America.

MICHAELA WIRTH (Lighting Design). Rarely seen in the full light of day, this designer is delighted to be working once again with DRC. When not in the darkness of the theatre, she can often be found in the darkness of the projection booth of the Nickelodeon... planning the lights for the next DRC show!

Matt Kennedy (Sound Design) is thrilled to be designing again for DRC. Past sound designs have included work for Fenix Theater, Stephen Madigan's Richard III, and Freeport Factory Stage. He also performs regularly as a saxophonist and arranger throughout Maine and New England. He credits DRC's The Flick, Fabuloso, Year of the Rooster (for his son's love of Pantera).

Johnny Speckman (Prop Design) is a local actor, designer, director, and fight choreographer. Thanks to Keith for the opportunity to play with DRC again! Love to Anna for her patience and strength.

Meg Lydon (Production Coordinator). Meg is very excited to join DRC for the first time for this moving and important production. She recently moved to Portland from Philadelphia, where she worked as a stage manager for five years at a number of theatre companies, including Bristol Riverside Theatre, PlayPenn, and the Walnut Street Theatre, among others. Since moving to Portland, she's had the pleasure of working with the Crowbait Club as well as Good Theater on their recent production of BOXES. Many thanks to the cast and artistic team, and to Darren for his love and support. Here’s to a fantastic show!

March 6 - 12, 2020

The website hosts the full audio play, and the video of the "Thanatos Diaries" scenes.

“Feelings of empathy are unavoidable for the mother in the story and perhaps also by extension for the

- Portland Press Herald, March 8, 2020
(read more >>)


– ebullient as a child, taut and sullen with his parents as a teen, jocular then wary and artificial with his friend, and – in shocking contrast – electric with confidence in his vlog.”

- Portland Phoenix, March 11, 2020
(read more >>)

World Premiere
by Lynne Conner
directed by Lisa Muller-Jones

with Nolan Ellsworth, Mary Fraser,
Robbie Harrison, Abigail Killeen*,
Michela Micalizio, David Pence

and Molly W. Bryant Roberts

DRC will produce the World Premiere of Lynne Conner's most recent play THE MOTHER, a thought-provoking and heartbreaking exploration of what happens to a family in the wake of a school shooting perpetrating by their son.

With a non-linear timeline, highly-theatrical characterization (The Mother is played by two actors, one before the shooting and one after, who often speak to each other), and a seven-member cast, many of whom play multiple roles, the play reveals some of the less-talked about aspects of our national tragedy of mass shooting - the roles of suicide, the concept of aggrieved masculinity, and who the public condemns/blames for such acts of violence. Conner's play asks questions and provides few answers, so that the audience is invited to struggle along with the characters in trying to understand why school shootings occur and what, if any meaning, we can discover in them.

Dramatic Repertory Theater recognizes, fully embraces, and actively promotes the idea that Art can provoke. Audience members are empowered to leave a performance at any point if they need.

** Please join us for a talk-back session with
Playwright Lynne Connor and
Director Lisa Muller-Jones
following the performance on March 7th.

* Member of Actors' Equity Association,
the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers
in the United States

PREMIUM SEATING – Get a reserved Front & Center seat without having to arrive early! Select Premium Seating and we will reserve your seat up until 5 minutes prior to the printed curtain time. If you arrive after that time, your reserved seat may be released, but you will still be able to see the show. There will be no refunds for late arrivals. $15 of your Premium Seat purchase counts as a tax-deductible donation to Dramatic Repertory Company.

DISCOUNT WEDNESDAYS – All seats to Wednesday Evening performances are $10!

FuturePatrons – if you are age 25 or under, see DRC shows for FREE!! FuturePatron tickets are available day-of only, and require government-issued photo ID as proof of age. Seating is first-come, first-served and subject to availability.

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