The comedy-romance "Almost Maine" opens Thursday at USU Eastern's Geary Theater with repeat performances every night except Sunday and Wednesday until Feb. 16. Curtain time each night is 7:30 p.m.
Professional actor Morgan Lund is director.
"Grady [McEvoy] asked me to submit some plays," Lund explained. "I submitted 'Almost Maine' because I just love it. One of the most difficult things we have to do in life is create relationships. And relationships based on love are the most important things in our life, whether we know it or not. It's not money, it's not a career, it's love. We forget how important love is in our lives."
Lund explained that there are nine different scenes in this play, nine different relationships. "There's also a lot more to it. It takes place in rural America, and it speaks to me when I'm in Carbon County. It wouldn't speak to me if I was in Chicago."
The Aurora Borealis is what ties the entire play together, Lund pointed out. The theater department has purchased five star projectors to thrust the audience into the moment onstage. "Everywhere we can put a star, we'll put a star. The theatrical experience will be like no other. Grady is designing an environment that will be very different."
He believes that the hardest thing about the play has been the casting. "I have 14 people in the cast, I found 14 people I wanted to work with...the most difficult thing about directing this play is getting out of my head. Getting out of my space and letting it happen."
It's a sensitive play, Lund says. There are somber moments, but there are aspects of love for everyone. "That horrible four letter word, love, is what makes a basketball player the best basketball player. It's what makes going home the most important part of your day...It's a comedy about a four letter word. [Everyone] is going to want to make out when we're done."
McEvoy is set designer, Corey Ewan, is costume designer, and Josh Bone is stage manager.
The cast includes Scott Zaborski, Lisha Michaels, Tyrell Clement, Annie Morey, Josh Bone, Leandra Arroyo, Madison Alleman, DeeJay Laughbon, Braden Hampel, Alissa Peters, Tim Swenson, Dwayne Huffaker, Carrie Huffaker and Savana Miller.
Tickets are $10 for adults, $7 for senior citizens, $5 for non-USU Eastern students and faculty, and $2 for USU students with ID.