“Miracle On South Division Street” at Cotuit Center for the Arts
WatermelonAlligator Theatre Company presents “Miracle on South Division Street,” by Tom Dudzick, at Cotuit Center for the Arts’s Black Box Theater December 8th through 18th. Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 PM and Saturday and Sunday at 2 PM. Tony Ferreira of Swansea directs, assisted by Sue Salvesen of Plymouth.
“This holiday comedy is about a blue-collar family – Clara Nowak & her three adult children - in a rundown section of Buffalo, NY, as their faith and religious foundation, around a self-professed ‘miracle’ appearance of the Virgin Mary to their patriarch, a Polish immigrant barber, is tested on Christmas Eve,” says Ferreira. He continues, “Nobody likes change, especially Clara, the barber’s daughter, but change is inevitable when long-held secrets are revealed and true meaning of the holiday miracle comes to light! Laughter ensues as the family members try to make sense of what the ‘miracle’ means for them.”
Salvesen agrees, adding, “This is the story of a family; adult siblings who are still children to their mother, and often regress to acting like children when they are together. Those moments provide the humor found between the seriousness as the family comes to terms with the revelation of a secret that shakes their personal beliefs and their own sense of self. Our four actors give us a very real glimpse into this tight-knit family; the squabbles, the confidences, and the deep love they share.”
“Miracle on South Division Street” finds the working-class Nowak family, of Buffalo’s East Side, performing their unique Christmas ritual of gathering at the shabby old homestead to commemorate the family “miracle.” According to legend, on Christmas Eve in 1942 the Blessed Mother herself appeared to Grandpa in the family barbershop. Since then, the neighborhood has looked upon the Nowaks’ 20-foot commemorative shrine to the Virgin Mary as a beacon of hope and faith amidst the urban rubble.
Now, family matriarch Clara (played by Stephanie Clark of Mattapoisett), the daughter of the now-deceased barber, believes strongly that the family miracle should acknowledged by the Church. “It was a good, old-fashioned Christmas miracle!” she declares.
As the play develops, daughter Ruth (played by Jess Wilson of Onset) divulges her plan to finally “go public” with the miracle by creating a one-woman Christmas show about the sacred event, much to the surprise of her siblings Beverly (played by Victoria Smith of Cotuit) and Jimmy (played by Garrett Olson of Pembroke). But during the course of the meeting, the entire family’s faith is shaken to the very core when a deathbed confession causes the family legend to unravel. The results are heartfelt and hilarious!
The Journal News wrote, “A rollicking comedy where one revelation builds on another to an unexpected and thoroughly satisfying conclusion. Best to order tickets before it sells out." The Connecticut Examiner wrote, “Best comedy of the year. You have to see it to believe it.” The New York Times agreed, calling it “a sprightly, gentle comedy.”
Garrett Olson, WatermelonAlligator’s Associate Artistic Director and Technical Director, adds, “Everyone knows and loves the classics. A Christmas Carol. It's a Wonderful Life. We get to see them every year. I'm excited to bring a different holiday story to the Black Box! Hopefully, it will become a “new classic” to enjoy as well!”
“Miracle On South Division Street,” by Tom Dudzick, at Cotuit Center for the Arts’s Black Box Theater, runs December 8th through 18th. Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 PM and Saturday and Sunday at 2 PM.
Tickets are $25, $20 for members. Cotuit Center for the Arts is at 4404 Route 28 in Cotuit. For more information, visit artsonthecape.org or call 508-428-0669.
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“Miracle On South Division Street,” by Tom Dudzick
Cotuit Center for the Arts, Black Box Theater, 4404 Route 28, Cotuit
Dec 8 - 18: Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 PM, Saturdays and Sundays at 2 PM
$25, $20 for members