Elvin Clark and Molly Brown as Robert & Catherine in “Proof.”
Elvin Clark and Molly Brown as Robert & Catherine in “Proof.”

Award-winning play “Proof,” wraps TLT season

Published 6:00pm Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Tryon Little Theater’s 2013-2014 season will conclude with the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winning “Proof,” to play the Workshop April 24-27 and May 1-4, directed by Connie Clark.

“Proof” earned critical acclaim for its sensitive portrayal of a brilliant young woman, Catherine, haunted by both the mathematical genius of her father, Robert, and by the mental illness she fears she may have inherited from him.

The play opens with Catherine sitting in a chair on the back porch of their Chicago house. She is 25, exhausted, haphazardly dressed. Eyes closed. Robert is standing behind her – rumpled academic look. Catherine does not know he is there until he speaks.

And so begins the exchange between two brilliant, loving people with some deep concerns about their lives. They are soon joined by Hal, a former PhD candidate who worked under Robert at the University of Chicago, and Claire, Catherine’s sister, in from New York to try to straighten out her father’s and Catherine’s affairs. Though it sounds quite serious, there is a good deal of laughter woven into this play.

“Proof” itself came from the mind of playwright David Auburn, who was born in Chicago but grew up in Ohio and Arkansas. He returned to Illinois to attend the University of Chicago, where he worked with a group that wrote and performed improvisational sketches and comedies. After graduating from Chicago, he moved to Los Angeles to become a screenwriter, but experienced little success. He then went to New York, where he wrote advertising labels for a carpet shampoo until he began the playwriting program at the Julliard School that resulted in his first full-length play, “Skyscraper,” being produced off-Broadway in 1997.

“Proof” premiered off-Broadway in the spring of 2000, moving to Broadway that fall. And so began an amazing Broadway run of 917 performances for this brilliant play . . . one in which the audience comes to care greatly about each of the characters. The TLT cast has Molly Brown as Catherine, Allen Law as Hal, Shay Carlson as Claire and Elvin Clark as Robert.

The box office opens at the Workshop, 516 South Trade Street, April 14, and is open Monday-Saturday 10-1, and Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4-7 p.m. Telephone reservations are accepted at 828-859-2466. The Workshop has limited seating for an intimate theatre experience, so patrons are encouraged to book ahead.

– article submitted 

by Connie Clark

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