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Ojai ACT to Stage Acclaimed Play ‘Skylight’

Former lovers Kyra (Anna Kotula) and Tom (Buddy Wilds) are the central characters of Ojai ACT’s upcoming production, “Skylight.” Click to view larger
Former lovers Kyra (Anna Kotula) and Tom (Buddy Wilds) are the central characters of Ojai ACT’s upcoming production, “Skylight.” (Brandi Crockett / Fancy Free Photography photo)

There’s a reason why Sir David Hare’s play Skylight has a shelf full of major awards and successful revivals in England and America — it speaks to our hearts, and those voices are coming to the Ojai ACT stage in dramatic fashion from May 6 through June 5.

As Director Steve Grumette says, “I found Skylight to be a revelation,” so much so he’s wanted to get it produced on Ojai ACT’s stage since he saw it in Los Angeles in 1997.

“The major challenge was finding actors capable of sustaining the wide range of intense emotions … that are both believable and captivating,” he said.

Grumette found them in veteran actors Anna Kotula (Kyra) and Buddy Wilds (Tom) and newcomer Noah Terry (Edward, Tom’s grown son).

“They have more than risen to the challenge,” the director said.

When Tom’s wife Alice first becomes ill with cancer, he builds her a new home with a skylight in the bedroom. Alice does not know until later that Kyra — employed at age 18 as a housekeeper and sitter for Edward — became Tom’s lover over a six-year period. When that’s revealed, Kyra disappears.

Fast forward three years when the play opens: Alice has passed away and Tom seeks out Kyra to perhaps rekindle that love, and separately young Edward also contacts her wondering why she left.

Now an independent woman, Kyra cooks a spaghetti dinner on stage as she and Tom reminisce and wonder about the future, a sort of food-for-thought prop where the aroma of marinara wafts through the audience.

The New York Post asserted the play is “luminously beautiful and wildly truthful … theater-going doesn’t get much better than this.”

There are three producers: Ruby Pronovost, Shed Behar and Ezra Eells. One of Ojai ACT’s finest set designers is Kenny Dahle, who has fashioned a modest flat for Kyra with an operating kitchen.

Skylight runs from May 6 through June 5 at Ojai ACT, 113 S Montgomery Street, at 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are $15 for general admission and $12 for seniors, students and Art Center members.

For tickets, call 805.640.8797 or visit www.OjaiACT.org.

John Hankins represents Ojai ACT.

 
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