Lake Dillon Theatre Company opens summer with examination of LGBTQ issues, teen’s disappearance | SummitDaily.com

Lake Dillon Theatre Company opens summer with examination of LGBTQ issues, teen’s disappearance

Summit Daily staff report
news@summitdaily.com

The Lake Dillon Theatre Company has opened its 2018 summer season with "The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey," one of six productions this summer geared toward celebrating humanity in society.

The play is billed as a timely and poignant, funny but important show about a Jersey town cop tasked with investigating Leonard Pelkey's disappearance. The flamboyant, optimistic 14-year-old has gone missing, and as the investigator examines clues left behind in a series of tragic events, a community gets to come to terms with the gripping situation.

"This summer, three of our productions explore social topics that are relevant today," said the company's artistic director, Chris Alleman, in a prepared statement. "This show offers a look at how one community addresses LGBTQ issues, and how its residents respond to a tragic series of events. As people celebrate PRIDE this month, it's a conversation that we feel is important."

Meanwhile, actor Jeff Roark asked the question: "When is empathy and compassion for people of all differences not relevant? Especially when we live in a world now that seems so divisive. That's what is so beautiful about the theater. You are constantly being exposed to different point of views and beliefs, and hopefully that encourages the viewer to be more respectful and compassionate to people of all backgrounds."

Performances will be in the Hadley Lab Theatre at the Silverthorne Performing Arts Center, the smallest and most intimate of the three performance spaces inside the new $9 million facility that opened last summer.

The play features Roark, direction from Christy Montour-Larson, lighting by Cory Sprinkles, costumes by Cassie Kay Hoppas, sound design by Stefanie M. Senior, scenic design by Ben Whitmore and stage management by Amber D. Julian.

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There are many performances now through June 24. Tickets are $29-$46 and can be purchased online at LakeDillonTheatre.org or by calling 970-513-9386.

"I love this play because it uses the theatre to bring communities together," Montour-Larson said. "It asks audiences to explore how can we encourage the Leonard Pelkeys in our lives to be fully themselves and at the same time, keep them safe. Many young people still face prejudice, discrimination, danger and limited opportunities because of who they are."

Lake Dillon Theatre Company sponsors include the town of Silverthorne, The Summit Foundation, Kaiser Permanente and the Outlets at Silverthorne.

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