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Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2010

Milwaukee Rep’s Winter Romance in ‘Almost, Maine’

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Playwright John Cariani’s Almost, Maine is a love letter to winter romance. The show, a series of vignettes set in a small town, has a wistful charisma that works well in smaller venues. This month the Milwaukee Rep launches a production of Cariani’s 2004 romantic comedy at the Stiemke Theater. While the Stiemke is far from being the smallest venue in town, the Rep’s studio theater should serve the intimacy of the play quite nicely.

The show is being directed by Rep resident actress Laura Gordon, who has also directed shows for Milwaukee Chamber Theatre and Renaissance Theaterworks. Gordon, who is better known for being onstage at the Rep, will have to visualize fellow actors in different roles and challenge them to stretch their abilities. Almost, Maine features Rep resident actors Gerard Neugent and Deborah Staples, along with guest actors Elizabeth Ledo and Steve Haggard. Ledo has worked extensively with the Rep in the past. Haggard is a young, Chicago-based actor who worked with the American Players Theatre over the summer.

The Milwaukee Rep’s Almost, Maine runs Jan. 13-Feb. 7.