CCP presents dark comedy ‘Other Desert Cities’

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Front, from left, Ronn Johnston and Vickie Cor- nelius Phipps. Back from left, Jeremy Tuterow, Miki Mathioudakis and Shannon Samson. (Sub- mitted photo)

The holidays can bring out the best and the worst in any family. Carmel Community Players is exploring one Palm Springs family and the lies, deception, addiction and depression ensnarling it in “Other Desert Cities” Jan. 26 to Feb. 11 at Carmel Community Playhouse, 14299 Clay Terrace Blvd.

Brooke Wyeth returns home for Christmas 2004 with news she is writing a memoir exposing the wealthy California family. The story delves into the dynamic of a less-than-perfect family.

“It’s a homecoming to Palm Desert. Polly and Lyman Wyeth are the ultra-conservative parents of the Wyeth family,” said Risa Krauter, play producer. “Their children are coming home for Christmas, and their daughter announces she is writing a memoir. She’s about to expose a family secret the parents don’t want anyone to know about.”

The play was written by Jon Robin Baitz and debuted on Broadway in November 2011.

“This is an actor’s show. I had so many people audition for this show because it’s so well-known amongst actors,” said Jim LaMonte, show director. “The show is very popular. You have to take a chance that there are people out there who want to see this type of story. People want to see something different that isn’t done every day.”

The “dramedy” is a different type of production for CCP.

“It’s a dark comedy that touches on depression, family dysfunction and family dynamics,” Krauter said.

LaMonte was attracted to the play because of its ensemble cast.

“The reason I like this one is because not only am I a director, but I’m an actor, too,” Lamonte said. “I have been involved in community theater for over 25 years. This is an ensemble cast, and that’s what I love to direct. I love that there isn’t one shining star but they all have a chance to shine.”

Where: Carmel Community Playhouse, 14299 Clay Terrace Blvd., Carmel.

Performance times: Shows at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 26, 27, Feb. 2, 3, 9,10 and 2:30 p.m. Jan. 28, Feb. 4, Feb. 11.

Tickets: $16 for adults and $14 for seniors and students.

For more: Visit carmelplayers.org


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