Joyce DeWitt and Jerry Adler star in I’m Connecticut – opens at UConn Dec. 1

Jerry Adler as “Gramps” and Joyce DeWitt as “Polly” in a scene from Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s world premiere of Mike Reiss’ play, “I’m Connecticut,” playing Dec. 1 – 10, 2011 in the Harriet S. Jorgensen Theatre at the University of Connecticut campus in Storrs.  Photo by Gerry Goodstein.

Jerry Adler as “Gramps” and Joyce DeWitt as “Polly” in a scene from Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s world premiere of Mike Reiss’ play, “I’m Connecticut,” playing Dec. 1 – 10, 2011 in the Harriet S. Jorgensen Theatre at the University of Connecticut campus in Storrs. Photo by Gerry Goodstein.

Connecticut Repertory Theatre on the University of Connecticut campus presents the world premiere of Mike Reiss’ comedy, “I’m Connecticut,” opening tonight (Dec. 1) at the Jorgensen Performing Arts Center.

The play stars Joyce Dewitt from the popular TV series Three’s Company and Jerry Adler from the HBO hit The Sopranos.

Ticket information is available online at www.crt.uconn.edu or call the box office during office hours at 860-486-4226.

The playwright Mike Reiss is a Peabody Award-winner, and four-time Emmy award-winning writer for The Simpsons.

He’s also a Connecticut native and this time he’s turned his sharp, satirical comic genius on his home state – and yours.

“I’m Connecticut” tells the story of a 30-something Connecticut native now living in New York trying to come to terms with his apparent lack of personality that he, and others, attribute to his upbringing in Simsbury.

This highly satirical comedy sets its sights squarely on all things Connecticut. From the origins of our nickname, The Nutmeg State, to our town names that he observes all sound like the names of English butlers (Simsbury, Litchfield and Old Saybrook).

A secondary love story revolves around the mother of Marc’s girlfriend, who falls for Marc’s grandfather. Marc is played by Harris Doran.

In 2006, Reiss received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Animation Writers Caucus.

He co-created the animated series The Critic, featuring actor John Lovitz, and created Showtime’s hit cartoon Queer Duck (about a gay duck).

His other TV credits include It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, ALF and The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.

His screenplay, My Life in Ruins, was made into a major motion picture in 2009 starring Nia Vardalos and Richard Dreyfuss.

He also co-wrote The Simpsons Movie, Horton Hears A Who! and Ice Age, Dawn of the Dinosaurs.

His caveman detective story Cro-Magnon P.I. won an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America.

He has published 14 children’s books, including the best-seller How Murray Saved Christmas and the award-winning Late for School. Mike also composes puzzles for NPR and Games Magazine. And he’s a former president of The Harvard Lampoon and editor of The National Lampoon.

Joyce DeWitt as “Polly,” with Harris Doran as “Marc” and Maggie Sulka as “Diane” join Jerry Adler as “Gramps” in a scene from Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s world premiere of Mike Reiss’ play, I’m Connecticut. Performances are Dec. 1 – 10, 2011 in the theater at Jorgensen Center for Performing Arts. Photo by Gerry Goodstein.

Joyce DeWitt as “Polly,” with Harris Doran as “Marc” and Maggie Sulka as “Diane” join Jerry Adler as “Gramps” in a scene from Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s world premiere of Mike Reiss’ play, I’m Connecticut. Performances are Dec. 1 – 10, 2011 in the theater at Jorgensen Center for Performing Arts. Photo by Gerry Goodstein.

“I’m Connecticut” will feature Joyce DeWitt (Polly) who starred as Janet Wood in the 18-year run of Three’s Company.

She has also appeared in the Canadian premiere of Dinner With Friends, The Last Night of Ballyhoo, the North American premiere of Daylight Savings, Noises Off, Anything Goes and Olympus on My Mind. DeWitt recently starred in the play Miss Abigail’s Guide to Dating, Mating & Marriage off-Broadway.

Tony Award-Winning actor Jerry Adler will play Grampa. He recently starred as “Hesh” in the hit HBO series The Sopranos.

He also appeared in Woody Allen’s Manhattan Murder Mystery and in The Public Eye, opposite Joe Pesci.

He has appeared in many television programs, including The West Wing, Law & Order, Northern Exposure, CSI: Miami, Hudson Street, Raising Dad, and Curb Your Enthusiasm.

He was a regular on the hit sitcom Mad About You.

Adler is a veteran of more than 50 Broadway productions as producer, director, and production stage manager, including the original My Fair Lady, Coco, The Homecoming, and Annie.

He won a Tony Award for Good Evening, which he directed with Peter Cook and Dudley Moore.

His recent films include In Her Shoes opposite Shirley MacLaine, Prime with Meryl Streep and Uma Thurman, and Synechdoche, New York with Philip Seymour Hoffman.

He recently finished the final season of the critically-acclaimed FX drama Rescue Me, as well as The Good Wife.

The role of Marc will be played by Harris Doran, whose credits include – New York Theatre: It Must Be Him, Reading Under The Influence, Love Jerry (NYMF Best Actor Award), Hair, Marrying Meg, Richard Cory, The Whore Of Sheridan Square (IT Award Nom). Regional: Amadeus, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Harry Connick Jr’s The Happy Elf, Cabaret, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Compleat Works Of Wllm Shkspr (abridged), Oliver (Ovation Award Nom). Film & TV: The Sea Is All I Know, Exposing The Order Of The Serpentine, Together, The Black Donnellys, Malcolm In The Middle, Any Day Now. Upcoming Film: Junction, My Best Day.

Director Paul Mullins said, “Mike Reiss’ new play ‘I’m Connecticut,’ is a hilarious look at love, both what we are willing to go through to find it and what we might discover about ourselves while on that journey. Mike has created funny, full, dynamic characters who will be brought to life by an amazing cast and wonderful designers.”

Artistic Director Vincent Cardinal said, “One of the exciting and unique elements of this show is the wealth of experience that the guest artists bring to the CRT stage. The combination of their talents brings Reiss’ comedic genius to life.”

Please call 860-486-4226 for tickets or visit the box office for specific show dates and times because performance schedules are subject to change. Tickets also are available online at www.crt.uconn.edu

Weeknight evening performances start at 7:30 p.m. Weekend evening performances start at 8 p.m. Matinee performances start at 2 p.m.

Ticket prices range from $6 – $29.

CRT is the professional producing arm of the Department of Dramatic Arts at the University of Connecticut, Storrs. CRT productions are directed, designed by and cast with visiting professional artists, including Equity actors, faculty members, and the department’s most advanced student artists. The synergy between professional and advanced student artists creates extraordinary theatre and a unique learning environment.

Posted Dec. 1, 2011

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Eagle Scout Project creates new benches for East Haddam Historical Society Museum

December 1, 2011 Local News No Comments
Front Row: Owen Dodd,Ellie Damuck,Ethan Damuck, Molly Dodd Trisha Damuck, Mary Flynn,Adam Lavoie,  Evan Damuck,Eric Dodd, Steve Lavoie,Nic Damuck

East Haddam’s Boy Scout Venture Crew No 169 plus Troop No 22, led by Eagle Scout candidate Ethan Damuck, are installing all-weather benches in front of the East Haddam Historical Society’s entrance. Pictured here on a recent work day, Front Row: Owen Dodd, Ellie Damuck, Ethan Damuck, Molly Dodd, Row 2: Trisha Damuck, Mary Flynn, Adam Lavoie; Row 3: Evan Damuck, Eric Dodd, Steve Lavoie, Nic Damuck. Contributed photo

The posthole digger roars.  Sledges and pry bars sing.  East Haddam’s Boy Scout Venture Crew No 169 plus Troop No 22, led by Eagle Scout candidate Ethan Damuck, are installing all-weather benches in front of the East Haddam Historical Society’s entrance.

This late November Saturday is perfect. Soon everyone has shed bulky outerwear in favor of T-shirts and long sleeves.

The holes are a trial.  The auger jumps when it encounters rocks the size of 30-lb turkeys, though weighing much more.

Gradually the 6X6 pressure-treated supports are leveled and backfilled.

The installation is a heavy-lifting, hard work project that adapts to changing conditions.

The benches, in various stages of completion, begin to stretch out across the front of the museum.

There’s lots of laughter and good-natured ribbing among the family and friends who make up the work crew.

A pizza and soda break comes just at the right time. Then it’s back to work.

When the first bench is completed, everyone sits on it and says it feels good.

The line of benches becomes slightly serpentine, like Andy Goldsworthy’s famous “Running Wall” at Storm King Sculpture Center in the Catskills.

The sun, so warm at midday, begins to set behind bare trees. The battery-powered tools slow down.

All slideshow photos contributed. In these photos,

Group photo, Owen Dodd, Ellie Damuck, Ethan Damuck,  Molly Dodd, Trisha Damuck, Mary Flynn,Adam Lavoie, Evan Damuck,Eric Dodd, Steve Lavoie, Nic Damuck; Ethan Damuck and George Bergstrom wrestling with the postholes; Dad Nic Damuck and son Ethan fastening a bench frame; Bench project moving along; Brother Evan Damuck, who is already an Eagle Scout, watches as the Trex top is attached; Ethan standing on a completed bench; Benches awaiting sitters and picnickers.  November 2011

no images were found

A cheer goes up when the last boxwood is planted between the benches.

People step back to admire the five benches. Younger crew members dance atop them.

Visit the Museum on Town Street and test the benches for yourself.  Bring a picnic lunch to share with a friend.  This is an Eagle Scout project meant to be used.

Posted Dec. 1, 2011

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