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BC Presents Student-Directed Play "The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek": Mar. 17-19

Chestnut Hill, MA (March 14, 2011) – The Boston College Theatre Department will present Naomi Wallace’s The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek directed by senior theater major Libby McKnight. The production will take place in the Bonn Studio Theater in the Robsham Theater Arts Center March 17 – 19, 2011.

Set in a rural Kentucky community at the depth of the Great Depression, The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek focuses on two teenagers, a precocious tomboy named Pace Creagan and her younger, brooding friend Dalton Chance, and on Dalton's working‐class parents, Gin and Dray, victims of the "hard times" of the 1930s. Pace and Dalton meet up for clandestine rendezvous at an old railroad trestle over a dried‐up creek bed, where they flirt with each other and danger by playing chicken with the 7:10 train. Their compelling stories unfold in a circular fashion that blurs the division between past and present and between fantasy and reality.

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BC students Chris Gouchoe '13 and Deidre McCourt ’12 in a scene from The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek. Photo by Anthony Russo.

“I think Naomi’s work and this play in particular are thrilling,” says McKnight. “She writes with such heartbreakingly beautiful language, and she delicately collides past with present. I want to be able to showcase that to our audience.”

The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek received its world premiere in 1998 at the Actors Theatre of Louisville as part of the acclaimed Humana Festival of New American Plays. It went on to important runs at New York Theatre Workshop and the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh, Scotland and numerous productions at colleges and universities around the country. It was described by The New York Times as “strikingly poetic” and “[b]y the end, the play, like that train, has built up a full head of steam and we feel its power.” Timeout also writes that it is both “charming and haunting....you'll view it with wonder along the way.”

Well known for her poetic and political examination of race, class, and gender, Wallace is one of the country's most important contemporary playwrights. She is the author of more than a dozen plays, including the widely produced One Flea Spare and a trio of short plays set in the Middle East called The Fever Chart. An accomplished poet and screenwriter, she has received numerous awards, including the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize (1996) and the prestigious MacArthur "genius" award (1999). She divides her time between her native Kentucky and the Yorkshire Dales in the United Kingdom.

The Boston College Theatre Department production features the work of a team of student designers: Gregory Keches ’11 (sets), Jules Forsberg‐Lary ’12 (costumes), Pat Brazil ’12 (lighting), and Riley Madincea ’11 (sound). It features Deirdre McCourt ’12 and Chris Gouchoe ’13 in the lead roles. Caitlin Berger ’11 plays Gin, Dalton’s mother; Tom Brown ‘13 plays Dray, Dalton’s father; and Jacob Sherburne ’11 plays Chas, the town jailer.The production opens Thursday, March 17 at 7:30pm and runs through Saturday, March 19 in the Bonn Studio Theater at the Robsham Theater Arts Center. Tickets are $10 and available at the RTAC Box Office, or by calling 617‐552‐4002. For more information, please go to www.bc.edu/theatre.


--Scott T. Cummings, Chair, Boston College Theatre Department, scott.cummings@bc.edu, 617.552.4012