The Kentucky Cycle, a sweeping epic in two parts, at BPA March 14 - 30
Winner of the 1992 Pulitzer Prize, this sweeping epic of three families in eastern Kentucky spans 200 years of American history from 1775 to 1975. Fast-paced and finely drawn, Robert Schenkkan’s stunning cycle examines the myths of the American past which have created, for better or for worse, the country we are today using nine individual stories to trace the last 200 years through the saga of the Rowens, a fictional clan that scrapes and schemes to keep its hold on land it originally acquired by duping Cherokee Indians out of the their hunting ground.
The cycle is epic in style when the plays are performed together, yet each individual play tells a powerful story on its own. In “Masters of the Trade,” Michael Rowen deceives the Native Americans, gaining land and causing the tribe's death. In “Courtship of Morning Star,” Michael Rowen kidnaps and rapes Morning Star, producing a son, Patrick. In “The Homecoming,” Patrick Rowen kills Joe Talbert and claims Rebecca Talbert as his wife, starting a cycle of revenge between the two families. In “Ties That Bind,” Patrick Rowen, deeply in debt, loses all he owns to the Talberts and becomes a sharecropper on his own land. In “God's Great Supper,” Jed Rowen recounts his haunting experiences in the Civil War, including his family's successful revenge against the Talberts as well as his encounters with William Clarke Quantrill. In “Tall Tales,” J.T. Wells, a smooth-talking man working for the coal companies swindles the Rowens out of their land. In “Fire in the Hole,” a union organizer attempts to rally Mary Anne Rowen's family and fellow miners into striking against the Blue Star Mining Company. In “Which Side Are You On?” an underhanded deal between the union and the Blue Star Mining Company pits Joshua Rowen, James Talbert Winston, and Franklin Biggs against each other. In “The War On Poverty,” three descendants of the Rowen, Talbert, and Biggs lines find something unexpected buried on the original Rowen homestead, shortly before they are to sell the land forever.
KATE CARRUTHERS directs a stellar cast, which includes TED DOWLING as Michael Rowan, Ezekiel Rowan, and Joshua Rowan, ROBERT BERGIN as Patrick Rowan, EVA JANE as Morning Star and Lana Toller, ANDY BUFFELIN as Richard Talbert and Sam, LAURA BANNISTER as Mary Anne Rowan and Rebecca Talbert, AUSTIN BENNETT as Tommy Jackson and Zach Rowan, RICKY COATES as JT Wells and Scotty Rowan, JIM ANDERSON as Judge Jim Goddard, ELENA FLORY-BARNES as Sallie and Sureta Biggs, BILLY GLEESON as Jed Rowan and Earl Tod, TIM DAVIDSON as Jeremiah, Gus Slocum, Preacher, and James Talbert Winston, SAM MCJUNKIN as Dragging Canoe, William Clarke Quantrill, and Abe Steinman, LUCIEN CARRO as Randall Talbert, JENNIFER PIPPIN MONTANEZ as Margaret Rowan and Lallie Rowan, DEBBI LESTER as Mary Anne Rowan and Joleen Rowan, DIANE WALKER as Mother Jones, FRED SAAS as Joe Talbert, JACKIE MCVAY as Rose Anne Talbert, RENEE MESSINGER as Julie Anne Talbert, JOSH MOFF as Joshua Rowan Jackson, NATHAN WHITEHOUSE as Zeke Rowan, and PETER DENIS as Thomas Nolan and Calvin Hayes.
The Kentucky Cycleappears at BPA March 14 - 30, with shows Fridays at 7:30 p.m. & Saturdays at 2:00 p.m. (PART I) and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. & Sundays at 2:00 p.m. (PART II). Pay-What-You-Can-Previews are Wednesday, March 12 at 7:30 p.m. (PART I) and Thursday, March 13 at 7:30 p.m. (PART II). A special Opening Night Reception is Friday, March 14 at 6:30 p.m.
Make a day of it! If you select Saturday matinees of PART I and evening performances of PART II, you’ll have plenty of time for dinner between them at one of our partner restaurants. Or choose different days or weekends entirely for a truly flexible ticket. The Kentucky Cycle is the first play in the 76-year history of the Pulitzer Prize to win without first staging a New York production.
Select two dates for one price! Tickets, $27 for adults, $22 for seniors, and $19 for students, youth, military, and teachers, may be purchased online at www.bainbridgeperformingarts.org, by phone at 206.842.8569 or in person at BPA, 200 Madison Avenue North, Bainbridge Island. BPA Box Office hours are 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, and one hour prior to each performance.
BPA is grateful to Humanities Washington for its generous grant in support of outreach programs for The Kentucky Cycle. Humanities Washington is a state-wide non-profit organization supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Bainbridge Performing Arts extends special thanks to The Kentucky Cycle Title Sponsor PHC Construction and Media Sponsor KUOW 94.9 FM Public Radio. BPA is supported, in part, by Bainbridge Community Foundation and One Call for All.
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