This week begins the second of a three week run for Little Lake Theater’s production of the 2004 play by John Patrick Shanley, Doubt: A Parable. The show, turned movie in 2008, illustrates the struggles of a Bronx parish priest and his effort to bring the Catholic Church to a more modern era with the opposition from the school’s principal. As one could imagine, uncertainty (aka doubt) is the main theme that binds these characters together, yet they each struggle with it on different spectrums. Each character seeks ways to remove the ambiguity in their daily structure to uncomplicated their lives, but that proves too difficult–causing more problems and more internal doubts.
Art DeConcillis directs a tremendously talented cast to bring Shanley’s commanding words to life. Don Digiulio powerfully plays the conflicted Father Flynn, Lynne Franks expertly expresses Sister Aloysius’s mistrust of everyone, and Laura Barletta adeptly demonstrates the true naivety of the young nun—Sister James. Rounding out the cast is a newbie to the Pittsburgh acting scene, Lauren Kelley who stunningly steals the show with her portrayal of Mrs. Muller.
Martha Bell, the Lake’s resident designer, and Leigh Ann Frohnapfel, properties manager, alongside TJ Firneno, as set designer, bring life to the set. They truly utilize Little Lake—a theater in the round—to give us every side of St. Nicholas Church School: the garden, Sister Aloysius’s office, and Father Flynn’s pulpit. And on each side of the stage featured a hand-made stain glass window that created beautiful designs on the Lake’s floor.
DeConcillis brings together every element of the stage to create a wonderful night of theater. He showcase’s a wonderfully written script by presenting four fantastic actors in a beautifully designed and decorated set. Doubt, runs about an hour and forty minutes without an intermission—so be sure to order your fruit and cheese plate or your hot fudge sundae before the show starts!
Doubt: A Parable, by John Patrick Shanley runs through September 20 at Little Lake Theater in Canonsburg. Tickets range between $12 and $20 and can be purchased by calling the Lake at 724-745-6300 or by visiting littlelake.org.
Special thanks to Little Lake Theater for two complimentary press tickets.
Performance Date: September 6, 2014