Doubt: A Parable opens at West Shore opens Thursday

February 25, 2013
Play stars actress Ginger Grace

Play stars actress Ginger Grace

VICTORY TWP. – “Doubt: a Parable,” the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winning drama by John Patrick Shanley, opens this weekend in West Shore Community College’s Center Stage Theater featuring guest artist, New York City professional actress, Ginger Grace.

Grace is returning to the college to portray the character of Sister Aloysius, a conservative, strong and flinty nun in this production of “Doubt.”  She previously appeared as Emily Dickinson in a 2008 WSCC Performing Arts Series production of “The Belle of Amherst.”

“Doubt: a Parable” is set in a Catholic church and school in New York in the Bronx in 1964, just a year following President Kennedy’s assassination and when the Catholic Church was undergoing a great cultural sea change during Vatican II.

The drama concerns the titanic struggle, both inward and outward, of Sister Aloysius, the principal of the school attached to St. Nicholas Church, and a young, liberal, compassionate priest, Father Flynn.

An inexperienced, innocent, yet committed nun, Sister James, and the resolute mother of the first black student ever admitted to the school, Mrs. Muller, figures prominently in the epic struggle of conscience and faith.

Rick Plummer, director of the production and of the college arts series, says that “having any professional in the company is always a great opportunity, not only for that actor’s fellow performers and the crew, but also for area audiences—it’s a win-win for everyone!  Student and community actors learn so much just watching the work ethic and the enormous amount of technique, talent, and hard work necessary to be a professional. Audiences, of course, benefit from a remarkable performance. The guest artist always adds a teaching element to her/his role as well.”

“I have been fascinated, as a literature professor, to work with an actress as talented and as experienced as Ginger Grace,” said Sean Henne who is playing Father Flynn. “She has been extraordinarily generous helping us find what she calls ‘layers’ in each scene, so that, as actors, we can bring out the complexity of the play.  This activity is both great fun for me and also wonderfully helpful as I contemplate how to teach this play to my students, and how to work with drama in general.”

Lindsay Roberts of Manistee, who is playing Mrs. Muller, the mother of a boy who may or may not have been “interfered with” in the play, says, “Ginger is such a kind and talented artist.  This role of mine was a challenge and I’m thankful Ginger took the time to help me cultivate such a complicated character.”

“Working with Ginger has been such a great privilege; she has taken the time not only to work with me one on one but also to get to know me. Her guidance, personal attention, and infectious enthusiasm have led to wonderful discoveries on a stage and a valued friendship,” said Kathleen Dillon of Manistee, who is playing Sister James.

“’Doubt’ is a tremendously powerful play, and this cast is exceptional.  I’ve rarely worked with area actors so up to the challenge of tackling a play that is so compelling, absorbing, and emotional,” Plummer adds.  “And I know their exceptional performances are in large measure due to working with such a consummate professional as Ginger.”

Of the character Sister Aloysius, who Grace will portray, says, “I am attracted to this character who dares to confront authority in order to protect those who cannot protect themselves.”

She added, “One of my most exciting experiences in bringing ‘The Belle of Amherst’ around the country was here at WSCC.  I can’t wait to share a play like ‘Doubt’ with this community!”

“Doubt” runs one weekend only opening on Thur., Feb. 28; at 7:30 p.m. Performances are also scheduled for Fri., March 1, and Sat., March 2, at 7:30 p.m., and Sun., March 3, at 2 p.m.

For tickets, call the WSCC Box Office at 843-5507, or for information on the production call Plummer at 843-5928, or email him at

Eats & Drinks

Eats & Drinks

Area Churches