Middlebury

March 20, 2001


Stage production brings Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas' story to life at Middlebury College

Play is one event in College's symposium on Stein and Toklas April 3-5

MIDDLEBURY, Vt.-The Foundry Theatre's award-winning two-woman play, "Gertrude & Alice: A Likeness to Loving," brings a first-person portrayal of the life of feminist icon Gertrude Stein to Middlebury College Tuesday and Wednesday, April 3 and 4. Both performances are scheduled for 8 p.m. in Wright Theater off College Street (Route 125).

The production will be held in conjunction with another College event-"Gertrude and Alice: a Symposium on the Lives and Work of Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas" April 3-5. The symposium will also include a Gertrude Stein poetry workshop, a lecture and an exhibition of Middlebury's Stein/Toklas collection at the College's Starr Library.

Culled from Stein's literature and letters, and the memoirs and cookbook of Stein's longtime partner Alice B. Toklas, "Gertrude & Alice" is performed by its creators-themselves a couple-Lola Pashalinski and Linda Chapman. Anne Bogart directed the production.

Because the play is based upon first-person material, it is rich with insight into the relationship of one of the 20th century's most famous lesbian couples: avante-garde modernist writer Stein and her devoted companion and literary subject Toklas. The production adopts Stein's unconventional writing style in its dialogue and uses photographic images of the real-life characters. The photos underscore the deft casting of the production. A Chicago Tribune critic observed that Pashalinski's "physical resemblance to her subject is so powerful she seems to have stepped from a 1920s photograph of Stein."

"Gertrude & Alice" seeks to explore the couple's struggles with art, sex, money, fame, jealousy and major personalities of the era. A reviewer for The New York Times remarked that the show achieves something rare in biographical theater: "a fresh perspective on known personalities that seems to be drawn from, rather than imposed upon, its subjects."

Pashalinski is a writer, award-winning actress and founding member of The Ridiculous Theatrical Company. Her credits include stage, film and television. Chapman is associate artistic director of the New York Theatre Workshop. She was a founding member of Dyke TV and DTV Productions, a cable television program and media center for the lesbian community. Bogart is a founder and artistic director of the 10-year-old SITI Company, an ensemble-based theater

company located in Saratoga Springs in the summer and in New York City the rest of the year. She is also an associate professor at Columbia University's School of the Arts Theatre Division.

Formed in 1994, the Foundry Theatre is renowned in New York City for creating and producing unconventional performances. The company also hosts conferences, discussions and lectures.

Tickets for the play are $10 for general admission and $8 for senior citizens. Call the College box office at 802-443-6433 for tickets. For more information about the other symposium events, contact Maria Trumpler, Middlebury College Dean of Ross Commons, at 802-443-3340, or visit the College's Web site at http://www.middlebury.edu/arts/calendar/.

To follow is events calendar listings information:

 

Events Calendar Listings:

April 3-5

"Gertrude and Alice: a Symposium on the Lives and Work of Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas"

Ongoing:

Mon-Thur. 8 a.m.-1 a.m.; Fri. 8 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sat. 9 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sun 9 a.m.-1 a.m.

Exhibition: Stein/Toklas materials from Abernethy Collection

Starr Library

South Main Street (Route 30)

Free

Tuesday, April 3

4 p.m.

Gertrude Stein poetry workshop: Led by Visiting Instructor of American Literature and Civilization Deborah Evans' "American Women Writers" class. Come learn how to interpret a Gertrude Stein poem. British-style high tea will be served.

Starr Library, Abernethy Room

South Main Street (Route 30)

Free

8 p.m.

Play: "Gertrude & Alice: A Likeness to Loving"

A first-person portrayal of the life of feminist icon Gertrude Stein.

Wright Theater off College Street (Route 125).

Tickets are $10 for general admission and $8 for senior citizens. For tickets, call the College box office at 802-443-6433.

 

Wednesday, April 4

8 p.m.

Play: "Gertrude & Alice: A Likeness to Loving"

An award-winning first-person portrayal of the life of feminist icon Gertrude Stein produced by the New York City-based Foundry Theater.

Wright Theater off College Street (Route 125).

Tickets are $10 for general admission and $8 for senior citizens. For tickets, call the College box office at 802-443-6433.

 

Thursday, April 5

4:15 p.m.

Lecture: "Passion and Creativity in the Lesbian Love letters of Gertrude Stein, Emily Dickinson, Rachel Carson, Radclyffe Hall, and Margaret Mead" given by Maria Trumpler, Dean of Ross Commons

Bicentennial Hall, Room 104

Bicentennial Way off College Street (Route 125)

Free

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