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Gettysburg Stage announces new season

(7/12) Gettysburg Stage, a non-profit, regional theatre company based in Gettysburg, continues to evolve, with some of those changes reflected in its 2007-2008 season.

"For our next season, which opens in September," says Jim Krut, the company’s board president, "Gettysburg Stage is mounting fewer plays. However, we will be running each play for more performances."

Opening the new season will be Edward Albee’s dark comedy "Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" directed by Pamela Hurlbert. A bitter university couple lets nothing stand in the way of their stinging barbs and games, even as they entertain innocent, late-night guests. The guests are drawn into the fray and wonder if their own relationship will turn into a "marriage on the rocks." The seductive and alcohol-tinged haze, however, hides a deep secret.

The play was considered scandalous when produced in New York in 1962, even though it won the 1962-63 New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play, as well as the 1963 Tony Award for Best Play. Selected for the 1963 Pulitzer Prize for Drama by that award’s committee, the choice was overruled because of the play’s then-controversial use of profanity and sexual themes onstage.

"This play, like each of the season’s productions, deals with themes and subjects best suited for audiences over 18 years of age," adds Krut. "The playwrights’ original language is intact and not watered down or changed. It’s not a matter of shock value, it’s a reflection of how people really speak and act. That’s one of the things that makes it thought-provoking, socially conscious theatre."

"Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" opens September 14 and runs Fridays and Saturdays for three weeks, through September 29.

Next on the schedule is Abe Polsky’s riveting courtroom drama "Devour the Snow," directed by David Deal. This tale is drawn from the harrowing saga of the ill-fated Donner Party, some of whose members died (and were cannibalized by the others) while snowbound in the Sierra Nevada mountains in the mid-1800s. A survivor of the tragic expedition brings a suit for slander against several other survivors, who have accused him of being a grave robber and murderer.

"Devour the Snow" runs three weekends, from November 2 through 17.

The third production is David Mamet’s intricate mystery-drama, "The Cryptogram." Stephen Wilcoxson directs this fast-moving tale by Mamet, a master of words and fast-paced dialogue. The author takes us on a dark and puzzling journey in which a child’s world can’t seem to intersect with the world and language of adults. Are the voices young John hears real? Where did the knife come from? This chilling, emotionally charged picture of a 1950s childhood drips with foreboding as its mystery slowly unfolds and draws in the audience.

The play opens February 22 and runs Fridays and Saturdays through March 8.

Closing out the season is a bittersweet comedy by Paula Vogel, "The Oldest Profession." Pamela Hurlbert returns to direct this tale of five aging workers in "the oldest profession" as they face a dwindling clientele for their services, increased competition and aching joints. Even as they find solace in their past and in their Everyone may find something in common with these ladies of the evening. They might even try their charms on the audience!

"The Oldest Profession" opens April 4 and runs weekends through April 19.

All performances are at the Keefauver Center, 157 Lefever Street, Gettysburg, two blocks off Baltimore Street. Starting time is 8 p.m. for each performance. Ticket prices remain at $12, with discounts for seniors over 60, students with identification and groups of 10 or more.

Keefauver Center also houses the Manito center for innovative learning and elements of the Adams County Tech Prep program. Free parking is available and the smoke-free facility is accessible for those with special needs. Details on performance dates and times are available through or by calling the toll-free information and reservation line, 1-866-859-5192.

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