Wednesday, July 23, 2014

ACT Ottawa falls in love with audience interaction, letting crowd taste the action

By MEGAN FINDLEY, Herald Staff Writer | 2/11/2013

Valentine’s Day will have passed, but the season of love is set to continue this weekend.

The Area Community Theatre of Ottawa, more commonly known as ACT Ottawa, is planning a presentation of “Love Letters” for 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Carnegie Cultural Center, 515 S. Main St., Ottawa. Written in 1989 by A.R. Gurney, the show is a love story about two life-long friends with a secret love for each other. Donations will be accepted.

Valentine’s Day will have passed, but the season of love is set to continue this weekend.

The Area Community Theatre of Ottawa, more commonly known as ACT Ottawa, is planning a presentation of “Love Letters” for 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Carnegie Cultural Center, 515 S. Main St., Ottawa. Written in 1989 by A.R. Gurney, the show is a love story about two life-long friends with a secret love for each other. Donations will be accepted.

One different element of the production involves audience interaction, Marilyn Pilkey, an ACT Ottawa member, said. The show will include a live reading of the play by the audience, she said. At all times throughout the play, one man and one woman will be reading several of the letters and then switching out with the next two in line to read.

Audience members will be able to read ahead, so they know what is coming in the letters they will be reading, Pilkey said.

“That way it isn’t a cold reading,” she said.

The Saturday presentation, also will include a variety of desserts and drinks, including cupcakes and Valentine’s cookies and miniature cherry cheesecakes, coffee, tea and “fancy punch,” which will be sparkling with sherbet.

The planned audience interaction is exciting, Pilkey said, and likely will be included in more plays to come. Another such interactive experience is planned for April 20 with a production of Sherlock Holmes, as well as in a June 15 “Grease” sing-a-long.

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