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Players present 'A Streetcar Named Desire'



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Blanche, played by Susan Craves, and her sister Stella, played by Jenna Kellie Pitman, share a heartfelt scene. Photo by Trevor Keiser (click for larger version)
March 16, 2011 - In honor of Playwright Tennessee Williams, who would have been 100 years old this year, Clarkston Village Players perform William's play "A Streetcar named Desire" starting this weekend.

While going through many hardships, Blanche Dubois, played by Susan Craves, lives a life of delusions. In order to escape both her past and present she flees to her sister Stella and brother-in-law Stanley's house. Her past however, does catch up to her, which she is forced to face.

"I love Blanche," Craves said. "I love her vulnerability, her desire to always make things better than what they are. I think she's a survivor although a very unsuccessful survivor and weak. She just has a childlike wonder."

Dan Genre, who plays the part of Stanley, said he didn't really like much about his character because he was a jerk, but liked the play overall.

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"I like the play because I think all the characters have very unique roles in situations," he said. "And the characters themselves, just their personalities on stage really make the show."

Jenna Kellie Pitman agrees the characters have a lot of depth, which is why she likes the part of Stella.

"Stella is torn between the love to her sister and the loyalty to her sister from her past, and the loyalty and the love for her husband in her present," Pitman said. "The entire time she feels like she is pulled in two directions and it's just kind of going on the ride of her figuring out where her loyalty lies."

Brandon Cassidy, who plays the part of Stanley's buddy Mitch, says his character is very similar to himself in a lot of ways.

"Mitch is sort of the one character in the play who isn't insane, so it makes it kind of fun being the straight guy looking at all these people going crazy around me," Cassidy said. "He is a character with a good heart, but also desperate for affection, which is what draws him to Blanche and of course she's drawn to him because she is looking for a way out."

He said Mitch is a character that many people can relate to as far as entering a relationship not based on love but as a means of trying to escape something.

"It's a complex role and there are a lot of layers to it, but Susan's been incredible to work with," he said. "It's been a great cast and a lot of fun."

Other cast members include Jennifer Gentry, James Hoxsey, Sean Harbert, and David Kramer.

"A Streetcar Named Desire" runs March 17, 18, 19, 20, 24, 25, 26 at the Depot Theater, 4861 White Lake Road. Shows start at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. on Sunday. For tickets, call 248-573-4104. For more information, visit www.clarkstonvillageplayers.org.

"There are a lot of tender moments in this show. It's about the relationships between man and a woman, and sisters," said Karen McClellan, who helped direct the play. "There are so many relationships that it deals with in this show and Tennessee Williams does a really good job with all the dynamics of a family you have to go through. It's just a really good show and it's been nice working with everybody."

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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