Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966

Neil Simon comedy heads to Chilkat Center stage


March 15, 2018

Jono Greene as Jake in the Neil Simon comedy "Jake's Women." Theatergoers can see the performances March 16, 17 and 18 at the Chilkat Center. Natalie Helms photo.

A talented Haines cast takes the stage this weekend in Neil Simon's comedy "Jake's Women," directed by Tod Sebens.

Jono Greene said of the seven or eight plays he has acted in since coming to Haines, including one in which he won best supporting actor in the state, this is the biggest.

Greene plays Jake, a writer facing a marital crisis by daydreaming about the women in his life.

"I can totally relate to living in a fantasy world," Greene said. He joked that Sebens typecast him for this role. "Jake's dependent on women, but I'm dependent on dogs," he said. He said he relates to the character so much that the things he doesn't like about the character, he also doesn't like about himself.

Jake has flashbacks remembering the women in his life, interrupted sometimes by visitations from the actual people. Sebens said the play has about 98 pages of dialogue, much of which falls on Jake.

"Jake comes close to losing his marbles, but it's wrapped up in a happily ever after," Greene said.

Jake's women include a therapist played by Kristin Brumfield; his sister, played by Angie Pappas; a girlfriend, played by Marie Boisvert; an ex-wife, played by Tracy Harmon; his current wife, played by Brenda Josephson; his daughter at age 21, played by Madeline Witek; and his daughter at age 12, played by Selby Long.

Sebens said he selected Long for the part because she has no fear on stage.

"I've been in theater camp since I was five," Long said. But this is her first time in an adult production. "It's not much different than being in a play with kids," Long said.

Sebens said Neil Simon knows how to think plays through and work an audience's emotions. "Neil Simon is a prolific and incredible screenwriter," Sebens said. "This play is not dark. It just goes from serious moments to lighthearted, funny moments," he said.

Josephson is making her theater debut in this performance as Jake's wife, Maggie.

"It's been a lot of fun to get lost in the character and in her world," Josephson said.

Sebens said Josephson has been "eating this part up."

The cast started rehearsing in mid-January and is set to perform Friday and Saturday March 16 and 17 at 7 p.m., and Sunday, March 18 at 2 p.m.

Greene said he hopes attendees go home with the "warm and fuzzies" and can enjoy being part of an audience that cracks up laughing.

Sebens said this comedy will "make you think and make you laugh."

"It's funny and entertaining, and it'll be a great show," Long said.


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