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Our Town, Our Playhouse

Westporters love the Westport Country Playhouse.  We brag about it to out-of-town friends, and hope it inflates property values.

But an astonishing number of residents have — how can I put this nicely? — never been there.

You’ll get your chance tomorrow, and you don’t need to feel guilty at all.  The Playhouse presents a special community open house — “Our Town, Your Playhouse” — with activities for young kids, teenagers, parents and everyone else, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

There’s children’s storytelling from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., along with a bean bag toss, face painting and coloring table.  An artist draws caricatures from 1-3:30.

Behind-the-scenes tours begin at 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 1, 2 and 3.  A display of production materials — including set models, production sketches and designer drawings — is set for 1-4 p.m.  All day long, costumes will be displayed in dressing rooms.

Workshops for adults and teens (reservations needed) include a very cool stage combat workshop (1-2 p.m.).  There’s also a directing workshop with Scott Schwartz (2:30-3:30 p.m.), and a set design chat (3-4 p.m.).

Mark Lamos, Playhouse artistic director, hosts a conversation about the 2010 season (4-5 p.m.).

And there’s a screening of the Playhouse’s 2002 production of Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town” — with Paul Newman playing the Stage Manager — at 7 p.m.  (Reservations needed).

After tomorrow, you have no excuse for saying “I’ve never been to the Playhouse.”   And after seeing what’s there — on stage and behind the scenes — you’ll probably want to return, as an actual paying customer.

(Reservations for the adult and teen workshops, and the “Our Town” screening, are available by calling 203-227-4177.  For more information, click here.)

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