Middletown Lyric Theatre presents award-winning drama ‘Proof’

Actors with Middletown Lyric Theatre rehearse "Proof." CONTRIBUTED

Combined ShapeCaption
Actors with Middletown Lyric Theatre rehearse "Proof." CONTRIBUTED

“Proof,” a play that won a Tony Award for “Best Play” and a Pulitzer Prize in “Drama,” is coming to the stage in Middletown. This will be Middletown Lyric Theatre’s first show of the season.

“I’m looking forward to the fact that we have a whole season planned. We have our team back. We all feel comfortable, we’re healthy, and we’re looking forward to offering patrons a great season without interruption,” said Charley Shafor, the show’s director, and Managing Artistic Director of MLT, “Hopefully, we are moving away from COVID, and we can just focus on what we do.”

There will be four performances of the show over two consecutive weekends. Show times are Fri., Mar. 4 at 8 p.m.; Sat., Mar. 5 at 8 p.m., Fri., Mar. 11 at 8 p.m. and Sat., Mar. 12 at 3 p.m. All tickets are $20 and may be purchased at www.middletownlyric.org.

“Proof,” written by David Auburn explores intellectual brilliance of an esteemed mathematician, but on a personal level it also touches on grief, mental health, sibling rivalry, and love.

“It’s a great play. It’s considered a drama, but it’s humorous at times. It really delves into relationships, the psyche, and what keeps us level,” Shafor said.

Directed by Shafor, the production’s cast is made up of Claire LaNicca (as Catherine,) Alan Kootsher (Robert,) Amanda West (Claire) and Robert Brumberg (Hal).

“‘Proof’ is about the power of love, and the power of difference, and being patient, and looking at people with differences and with patience,” Shafor said.

He said like the majority of shows this season, “Proof” deals with relationships, and what you can do to make relationships stronger or better in the face of change.

“In family, you are patient, you listen, and you do what’s best, even when you’re not presented with an easy task on how to take care of someone,” Shafor said, “This play is definitely about understanding and listening before you make judgements.”

With this being the first show of the season, Shafor said, MLT was afforded more time and additional volunteers, which allowed the theater group to focus on some of the extras, such as the lighting and set design.

“This is a great way for us to shine as a small theater company, and I hope people will recognize that. We really took the time to find the right people, and it’s the right play, and everything is behind it, detail-wise. We really spent time with the lights, set, and the concept, and we’ve put together a tight, ensemble show that we can be proud of,” Shafor said.

This is MLT’s 44th season. Founded in 1978, the mission of Middletown Lyric Theatre is to inspire, nurture, challenge, educate and empower audiences while continuing a longstanding tradition of producing affordable and accessible community theater productions. The organization will turn 45 next year.

HOW TO GO

What: “Proof” presented by Middletown Lyric Theatre

When: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 8 p.m. March 11 and 3 p.m. March 12

Where: Middletown Lyric Theatre is located at 1530 Central Ave., Middletown

Cost: $20 reserved seating (plus applicable ticketing fees)

Tickets: middletownlyric.org or (513) 425-7140

More info: Traffic advisory: Central Avenue improvements will be under way during this show’s performance

About the Author