The upcoming production of Monroe Actors Stage Company in Waterloo is a comic take on Russian playwright Anton Chekhov’s themes of failure and disappointment in life.
Director Zona Ludlum saw the play, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike,” at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis two years ago.
“I thought it was very funny,” she said. “Sigourney Weaver starred in the Broadway production, and Christopher Durang won the Tony Award for Best Play in 2013. It’s just now getting out to the country.”
Zona has no problem picking her favorite scene.
Vanya, a middle-aged Pennsylvania man supported by his movie-actress sister, is railing over modern culture and technology. He bemoans the lost art of writing and longs for the days of Ozzie and Harriet, “Old Yeller” and the Beatles.
“I can relate to every bit of it, and it brings back childhood memories for me,” said Zona, 74, a retired speech and theater teacher.
The community theater group will perform “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 3-4, 2:30 p.m. Feb. 5, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 10-11 and 2:30 p.m. Feb. 12 at the historic Capitol Theatre, 202 S. Main St.
Sigourney Weaver starred in the Broadway production, and Christopher Durang won the Tony Award for Best Play in 2013. It’s just now getting out to the country.
Director Zona Ludlum on upcoming play
The play is set in Bucks County, Pa., where Durang lives. Vanya is unemployed and sharing the family home with his sister, Sonia, who missed out on love and marriage while taking care of their aging parents.
Amid the siblings’ usual bickering and complaining, sister Masha shows up for an impromptu visit. Old resentments flare, leading to threats of selling the house.
“(Masha) is a movie actress — a B-movie actress — who has had five husbands,” Zona said. “And now she has a boy toy who turns out to be a cheat.”
The Waterloo production stars David Zimmerman as Vanya, Maria Wilken as Sonia, Stacey Tunnicliff as Masha and Auston Brouk as Spike, Masha’s boyfriend.
Rachel Feazel and Grace Durrer round out the cast. Stage managers are Brook Owen and Zach Thompson.
“By the name of (the play), you would tend to think it was a heavy Russian Chekhov parody, but it’s not at all,” Zona said. “It’s a modern comedy, and ultimately it’s about aging and disappointments in life.”
At a glance
- What: “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”
- Who: Monroe Actors Stage Company
- When: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 3-4, 2:30 p.m. Feb. 5, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 10-11 and 2:30 p.m. Feb. 12
- Where: Capitol Theatre, 202 S. Main St. in Waterloo
- Admission: $12 for adults or $10 for students and senior citizens
- Tickets: Available at the door
- Reservations: Call the ticket line at 618-939-7469 or visit www.masctheatre.org