Vincent Dowling brings his production of Norman Corwin’s play about the Lincoln-Douglas debates, The Rivalry, to The Cultural Center at Eagle Hill, Hardwick MA, for performances Oct. 1-4, 2009. Dowling is a Lifetime Associate Director of the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, Ireland. For tickets, information, and directions phone 413-477-6726 or go to www.thecenterateaglehill.org. Tickets are $25 (less for students).
Norman Corwin is one of the greatest living writers in the English language, and has been called America’s “poet laureate of radio.” During the 1930’s and 40’s, he wrote and produced many of the most powerful, most influential, and simply the best programs ever created for the media. When President Roosevelt wanted to celebrate the Bill of Rights, as World War II engulfed the globe, Norman Corwin got the call. When time came to celebrate and reflect on Victory in Europe — and again in the Pacific — Norman Corwin was the obvious choice. Corwin’s programs range far and wide through the genres of drama and comedy, including love stories, satire, biography, fantasy, mystery, Bible stories, travelogues, history, media analyses, philosophy — and more. All, along with his programs on current events and the stories of America, are superb examples of the art. Together, they are a master class in how to evoke the greatest possibilities of sound, and of radio. Over the years, he has worked in various media, publishing a number of books, and writing for the stage, television, and the movies. His books include “Trivializing America,” and “Holes In A Stained Glass Window,” as well as his collected correspondence, and many books of his scripts and poetry. His movie script for “Lust For Life,” a biography of Van Gogh, won him an Oscar nomination. His television credits include his 1971 series “Norman Corwin Presents.” Corwin returned triumphantly to radio in the 1990s, with a series of new programs written and directed for National Public Radio. These new productions are destined as well to be considered audio theatre classics, produced in full digital stereo with magnificent modern casts, including such luminaries as William Shatner, Jack Lemmon, Charles Kuralt, Martin Landau, Hume Cronyn, Charles Durning, Samantha Eggar, and many others.
Vincent Dowling is Lifetime Associate Director and former ArtisticDirector of the Ireland’s National Theatre- The Abbey Theatre, where he was a leading actor/ director for 23 years. Producing Director of The Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival in Cleveland; Founder of The Vincent Dowling Theatre Company; Founder and first Artistic Director of The Miniature Theatre of Chester aka The Chester Theatre Co. He has produced, acted or directed in London, Paris, Hong Kong, The Moscow Arts, Florence, Boston, New York, Toronto, and at The Kennedy Center in Washington DC. He has toured Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, and the United States. He has made countless appearances on film, TV and Radio. He has honorary doctorates from five major American Educational Institutions; has appeared in solo performances on three state occasions at President Reagan’s White House.At all these occasions ‘Tip’O’Neill was a Guest of Honor. Vincent won an “Emmy’ for directing and producing The Playboy of the Western World on PBS. He discovered Tom Hanks , gave him his first years of professional acting work and brought to the American Stage – Colm Meaney; David Kelly (The Waking of Ned Devine) and Roma Downey (Touched by an Angel). Vincent has lectured and spoken at schools, colleges, universities, city halls, state houses, churches, chapels, cathedrals, and synagogues. Written plays, poems, op-ed articles, and autobiography- ASTRIDE THE MOON. Vincent has been the commencement speaker and/or recipient of honorary doctorates at Kent State University, Elms College, John Carroll University, Gateway Regional Highschool, The Berkshire Hills Music Academy, and The College of Wooster and Westfield State College. He hosts a weekly radio program ‘Shootin’ from the Hip’ on 103.3 FM in Northampton MA.
Mary Linda Rapelye Adele Douglas–appeared in the original version of STAR TREK as Chekhov’s girlfriend “Irina” in the episode “The Way to Eden”. She has also performed the role of Maggie Crawford for six years on As The World Turns, Faith Kipling on One Life To Live, as well as roles on Ironsides, and Medical Center and as Senator Baker’s wife in the made- for -T.V.-movie Blind Ambition about John Dean and Richard Nixon. Her other movie credits include In Cold Blood (Susan Kidwell) directed by Richard Brooks and Marooned (Gregory Peck’s daughter) directed by John Frankenheimer, Manchurian Candidate with Meryl Streep. She has toured Eastern Europe extensively, performing for the U. S. State Department’s Cultural Exchange program. Her theatre roles include Winter’s Tale (Perdita),A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena and Titania), Imaginary Invalid (Angelique), La Guerre de Troi N’auraPas Lieu (Helen of Troy), The Rivals (Julia), Peg Of My Heart ( Ethel), A Man for All Seasons ( Meg), All My Sons (Anne), Mary,Mary (Tiffany), Plaza Suite (Bride), Live Like Pigs (Mrs. Jackson), Don Juan ,(Donna Elvira), The Sisters Rosensweig ( Sara), The Sound Of Music (Mother Abbess), Oklahoma ( Ado Annie) She majored in theatre at Wellesley College and the University of Kansas and studied with Uta Hagen at the H.B. Studio in New York City. Most recently she has worked on the feature film The Box starring Cameron Diaz, The Proposal starring Sandra Bullock, and This Side Of The Truth starring Jennifer Garner
Christian Kauffmann Abraham Lincoln – last appeared as Joseph II in The Wilma Theater, production of ” Amadeus”. Previously he has starred in Bus Stop (Old Globe), To Kill a Mockingbird (Vermont Stage Company) and David Zarco’s production of The Streets of New York at the Metropolitan Playhouse. He has performed regionally at the Two Rivers Theatre Company, the McCarter Theatre and at the Seattle Repertory, Capital and Merrimack Repertory Theatres. He is a veteran of several seasons at Actors Theatre of Louisville where he had the opportunity to play numerous roles including Flute/Thisbe in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lagrange in The Royal Comedians and Will Pike in The Very Lost Love of the River Cane. He also appeared with Peter Allen as Bones in Legs Diamond on Broadway.
Peter Cormican Stephen A. Douglas – In January 1989 Harold Prince cast him as Piangi in the Original Canadian Phantom of the Opera with Colm Wilkinson. He played that role for three years and left to do Closer Than Ever across Ontario and British Columbia and later Lend Me A Tenor. Leaving Canada in 1993 he moved to London to live for four years and did the UK National tour of Buddy as HighPockets Duncan for nearly a year in 19 cities in England Ireland Scotland and Wales. In London’s West End he reprised Piangi in Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre and was in the Royal National Theatre’s Original London Cast of Lady In The Dark with Maria Friedman. A favorite production in the UK was Sweeney Todd at the Haymarket in Leicester with Dave Willets where he first met Steven Sondheim.
On Broadway He appeared with the Roundabout Theater’s 2001 revival of Sondheim’s Follies appearing as Sam Deems, Dimitri Weissman, and Roscoe. In 2002, he was honored to take part in the Sondheim Celebration in Washington DC in A Little Night Music as Mr. Erlanson. The Irish Repertory Theatre in New York is one of his favorite venues appearing there in Prisoner of the Crown, The Streets of New York, Frank McCourt’s The Irish; and how they got that way and Celtic Christmas. Other regional appearances include Mame, Rags, My Fair Lady, Anything Goes and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde at Papermill Playhouse, Me & My Girl at Goodspeed, Man of La Mancha at the Maltz Jupiter Theater, and the Molly Maguires in Wilkes-Barre. He has toured the USA in Phantom of the Opera and with the Irish; and how they got that Way and appeared with Opera North East in their production of Tales of Hoffman in Worcester and Hyannis MA.
John Darrow ( Committee Man/ Reporter ) is delighted to rejoin the VDTC’s production of The Rivalry. Originally from Holyoke, MA and retired as an economics professor his early stage experiences were with variety and talent shows and collegiate theater productions. He recently has performed at venues in Western Massachusetts, in Newburyport, and in Boston and is currently cast as Captain Orton in The Arena Civic Theater’s production of The King and I scheduled for performances in late October. He is a poet and singer and is active in social and environmental advocacy. He resides in Chester, MA.