Willamette Theatre Presents Beauty Queen of Leenane

Willamette University Theatre announces its third show of the 2008-09 season, Martin McDonagh's "Beauty Queen of Leenane." This production runs Feb. 20-March 7, with a preview performance Thursday, Feb. 19, at 7:30 p.m. at the Theatre Playhouse on campus. Performances are Thursday-Saturday at 7:30 p.m., with Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. The play contains adult language and situations, and is not suitable for children.

The Tony Award-winning play contains the brash humor, rich language and inventive storytelling that mark Martin McDonagh as one Britain's most promising young writers. His gift for dialogue and dark humor is complemented by the talents of Willamette faculty, students and staff.

The dark, offbeat comedy takes place in a small house on a big hill in County Galway, Ireland, where the Folan women live out an uneasy truce. Forty-year-old Maureen and her elderly but iron-willed mother, Mag, spend their days in endless rounds of petty insults and physical threats as each maneuvers for control of their isolated existence. But when an old family friend reappears and offers Maureen a chance at love and a new life, this terrain grows treacherous and the two women, bound by blood but driven by desperation, will do anything to survive. The play's glimpse into the Folan family dynamic illustrates thought-provoking contemporary themes.

Direction will be provided by Willamette University Theatre co-chair and acting professor Susan Coromel, and the cast includes senior theatre/psychology major Tara McLauchlan as Mag, junior theatre major Britt Lauer as Maureen, senior theatre major Cory Goble as Pato, and freshman theatre major Joshua Rice as Ray.

Technical elements of the production will by created by faculty, staff and students. Professor Christopher Harris will conceptualize the visual surroundings, instructor Rachel Kinsman Steck will light the show, and senior theatre major Anya Ballinger will design the costumes.

The March 1 matinee will feature an American Sign Language interpreter. Please note that curtain times have changed to 7:30 p.m. Purchase tickets through the Willamette University Box Office at (503) 370-6221 or by email at Opening night is $12 for general admission and $8 for students and seniors. Most other evening performances are $10 for general admission and $6 for students and seniors. Please contact the box office for specific pricing and details. The Willamette campus is located at 900 State Street in Salem. For more information contact the Theatre Department at (503) 370-6222 or visit