Brittany Dreier (Elizabeth Proctor) and Kory Weimer (John Proctor) discuss their options during Cottage Theatre’s production of ”The Crucible.” PHOTOS PROVIDED/ COTTAGE THEATRE
Once again, Cottage Theatre proves fearless in their choice of productions. Arthur Miller’s ”The Crucible” is a powerful play addressing a subject as universal as it is personal: humankind’s tendency to believe the worst in their fellow men and the disastrous consequences.
A crucible is defined as a place or occasion of severe test or trial. ”The Crucible” is set in the year 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts – the Salem of the infamous witch trials. Miller’s play was first performed in 1953, as an allegory about McCarthyism which put Miller in the crosshairs of the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), which was conducting a modern-day ”witch hunt” of its own.
Miller refused to give in to demands that he name fellow writers and friends who may be interested in communism. When Chairman Waters of the HUAC offered to remove his name from the subpoena list if Miller would arrange a photo op with Marilyn Monroe (Miller’s soon-to-be wife) he declined and was declared in contempt of Congress. (The ruling was overturned two years later.)
Sets and props were minimal for the Cottage Theatre performance but well done; the lighting and sound, as usual, were superb. Costume designer Rhonda Turnquest carefully added the perfect, admirable touch with impeccable taste. Director Joel Ibanez, hardly a theater novice, directed for the first time with finesse.
The cast and crew were solid and gave it their all in their portrayal of characters. Kory Weimer (John Proctor), Brittany Dreier (Elizabeth Proctor) and Marcee Shriver Long (Rebecca Nurse), you gave heart to the play. Thank you.
I came away in tears and sat in my car weeping for the senselessness and ignorance. In the end, the tears reflected the most important lesson of all: That love and integrity are our most precious possessions, no matter the price.
700 Village Drive
Cottage Grove, OR 97424
June 8-24, 2018
Tickets: $25 Adult/$15 Youth (18 & under)
Curtain Times: Thurs., Fri. & Sat. 8 p.m.;
Sunday 2:30 p.m.