Dark Horse Theater Company presents the Fauquier premiere of the Obie Circle Award-winning play Mirror Transformation, written by Annie Baker and directed by Allison Turkel.
A fascinating journey told during a creative acting class for adults, this comedy-drama focuses on the emotional complexities between relationships. We’re guided through grief, humor and embarrassing secrets by a cast of five phenomenal actors, each carefully taking us through their own character’s journey of learning and healing. Everyone has their baggage; but it takes an acting lesson to get that baggage out, unpack it, and put it back in its place.
The plays revolve around a six-week drama course, in which teacher Marty (Carole Preston) eagerly leads her students through a series of acting exercises. We start with the counting game, which turns out to be much more difficult than expected. Each exercise requires vulnerability and openness, which Marty’s husband James (Randall Kish) is no expert on. While performing a first-person monologue from Marty’s perspective, James reveals his nervousness and frustrations through frequent pauses and backtracking, but he goes all the way.
Newly arrived from New York, Theresa (Meredith Garagiola) is more impatient and attracts the clumsy carpenter, Schultz (Ken Gilfillan).
A romance emerges – will it last? As Theresa and Schultz manage their relationship, Marty and James work through their issues. Exercises such as scene sculpting reveal that James’ concern for his daughter greatly affects his marriage to Marty, and that they hide resentments that are expelled through these acting plays. Aspiring actress and high school student Lauren (Sophia Manicone) is often sullen and hides in plain sight. Yet each exercise reveals more and more of his tense family dynamics and impatience with the class. Week after week, we see the curtain begin to fall as each character comes to terms with their own desires, fears, and weaknesses.
Circle Mirror Transformation takes a close look at the lives of these five people and how these “simple” exercises can bring out the best and the worst in you. A hard-hitting, heartfelt, and funny production, this play will inspire audiences to root for the character they sympathize with and come away with those human questions: What are my secrets? Are they exposed in my relationships with others, how can I accept my weaknesses and continue to grow? And how do we even begin to heal?
Wonderfully directed by Allison Turkel and directed by Peyton Johnston, the Dark Horse Theater production of Circle Mirror Transformation will be presented at ArtsHerndon, located at 750 Center Street, Herndon, VA 20170, and Grace in the Plains, located at 6507 Main St, The Plains, VA 20198. ArtsHerndon will take place on Friday evening April 29 and Saturday evening April 30 at 8:00 p.m. Grace in the Plains will run Friday and Saturday nights from May 6 through May 14 at 8:00 p.m.
Tickets are $20 for general admission and $15 for students or military with ID. More information and online tickets are available at darkhorseva.com/shows.