Raw Emotion Explodes In ‘Independence’
An intriguing and powerful display, filled with desperation and love, a family’s soul emotionally unravels in Lee Blessing’s Independence. Opening March 5, this is the first dramatic play of the season for PowPAC, Poway’s Community Theatre.
The story focuses on a mother and her three daughters in the small town of Independence, Iowa. It’s the lifelong home of mother, Evelyn Briggs. Her oldest daughter, Kess, is a university professor in Minneapolis, but she has come home at the request of her sister, Jo who is concerned for her mother’s mental health. Kess feels the need to distance herself from her family because of the rejection of her lifestyle by her mother. Jo, Evelyn’s live-in caregiver, an incurable romantic and longtime virgin, has now become pregnant; while Sherry, salty-tongued and amoral, wants only to finish high school so she can leave home for good. As reconciliation seems out of reach, family members realize they must seek their own independence to survive.
Director Jay Mower says audiences will find Independence very compelling. “It tackles difficult issues inherent in all families but possibly amplified in this one. Their particular challenges include a Mom who is “a little off,” an older daughter who returns home temporarily, trying to “save” the family, a middle daughter who seems to exist solely to sacrifice herself to the care of her mother, and a youngest daughter who is wild, and can’t wait to leave the town and her Mom for good.”
The cast of Independence includes Dee Kelley as Evelyn, the mother, Kaly McKenna as Kess, the oldest daughter, Krysti Litt as Jo, the middle daughter, and Maleia Gruber as Sherry, the youngest daughter.
Mower says patrons will find it memorable, “This play represents a powerful microcosm of four people trapped in a sort a prison, each desperate to escape to their own personal ‘independence.’ Audience members may see aspects of their own family dynamics. The performances are compelling and honest.”
“Directing this play has been personally enriching. I love plays that make you think, and reveal the psychosocial complexities that are inherent in all human interactions. I love directing psychological dramas and the exploration of dysfunctional relationships,” says Mower.
Poway’s Community Theatre, now in its 28th season, offers a cozy and intimate setting to truly watch first-class performers. The theatre is located upstairs in the Lively Center at 13250 Poway Road in Poway. For easier access, an elevator with additional parking is available behind the building.
Presented by PowPAC, Poway’s Community Theatre
Lively Center, 13250 Poway Road (In Poway)
Box Office: (858) 679-8085
- PowPAC is offering special $10 tickets for the Saturday, March 6 at 8 p.m., and Sunday, March 7 at 2 p.m. performances only.