BENNINGTON, Vt. -- "A Strange Disappearance of Bees" by Elena Hartwell, opens at Oldcastle Theatre Companyon May 17, running through June 2.
"A Strange Disappearance of Bees" is a beautifully written play that tells the story of an Amer-Asian man looking for his Vietnam-veteran father. Hartwell’s play centers on five people searching for home, love and true family, juxtaposed against the flight of the bee in a poisonous world. With compelling characters and a tender story which is told in memories that blend back and forth into one another, the play is both poignant and entertaining. Actors for this production include Michael D. Nichols, Melissa Hurst, Jenny Strassburg, Loren Dunn and Simon Yokoyama.
Nichols has appeared previously at Oldcastle in "Sweet Talk" and "An American Revolution." He has also appeared at many regional theatres (Centerstage in Baltimore, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Alley Theatre, Barrington Stage Company), and on Broadway in "November" (world premiere with Nathan Lane), and in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest" with Gary Sinise (winner of Tony Award for Best Revival). On television, he has appeared in "All My Children," "Another World," "As the World Turns," "Days of Our Lives" and "General Hospital." Nichols is a veteran of the U.S. Army.
Playing Rud, the Beekeeper, is Hurst, who has appeared in "Picnic," "I’m Not Rappaport," "On Golden Pond," and "Our Town" at Oldcastle Theatre.
Strassburg is returning to Oldcastle Theatre where she previously appeared in "Third and One, Two, Three." Previous credits include: Lydia in "Pride and Prejudice" (Pioneer Theatre Co.), Emma in "Echoes of the War" (starring Richard Easton and Frances Sternhagen, The Mint Theatre), Gwendolen in "The Importance of Being Earnest" and Sophia Western in "Tom Jones" at the Dorset Theatre Festival.
Dunn played the titular role in Wendy Wasserstein’s "Third" at Oldcastle Theatre Company. Dunn most recently appeared in "You Can’t Take It with You" at the Geva Theatre Center, starring Robert Vaughn. Other credits include Tennessee Williams’ "The Pretty Trap" (off-Broadway, N.Y. premiere), "The Night of the Iguana," "Women of Manhattan," and "Cassiopeia." He has also appeared on television in "As the World Turns," "One Life to Live" and "30 Rock."
Yokoyama is debuting at Oldcastle Theatre with this production. This will be his third time working with Hartwell. Recent work includes performances at the Erickson Theatre in Seattle, Wash. where he appeared as King Alonso in "The Tempest," "Nickel and Dime," and "Blogger."
Performances are on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8 p.m., and Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday at 2 p.m. Oldcastle Theatre is located at 331 Main St. in downtown Bennington. For more information or tickets,: 802-447-0564, oldcastletheatre.org.