Miller's Crucible presented by Sayville Players

  • The profound drama of Arthur Miller’s, The Crucible, was recently presented with two different casts by the remarkable Sayville Players. 


    This Tony-Award winning tragedy—which parallels the anti-communist paranoia of McCarthysm—recreates the colonial Massachusetts community beset by mass hysteria. While the characterization of the actual historical figures is the result of Miller’s fictional genius, the series of Salem Witch Trials (which prosecuted over 150 falsely accused people and hanged the innocent) remain historical truths.


    Terror strikes the hearts of those implicated by the chilling testimony of love-spurned teenager Abigail Williams (Katrina Avila, Mary Corrado) who seeks occult practices to dispose of Elizabeth Proctor (Tara Kennedy, Casey Jarvis) the lawful wife of her one-time lover John Proctor (Andrew Vall, Jared Linehan ).


    When Tituba (Cathy Rico, Andrea DeVenuto), a slave from Barbados, is the first accused of consorting with the devil despite her truthful denials, she switches her plea, accuses Sarah Good (Heather Merkle) of witchcraft and begs for mercy from Occult Expert Reverend John Hale (Michael Miller, Lauren Dodaro). The fabrications proliferate. Alibis for Abigail’s lies are sanctioned by her teenager accomplices Mary Warren (Carlie Garcia, Lexi Minogue) Betty Paris (Francesca Cascardo, Brianna Concannon) Susanna Walcott (Alexis Skalkowski, Briana Gomez), and Mercy Lewis (Teresa Troccoli, Morgan Neems) who themselves are too fearful to reveal their own complicity.


    The contagion of witchcraft accusations spreads into the community, with unpopular pastor Reverend Parris (Derek Hartnett, Kenneth Murray) too willing to believe the falsehoods about the parishioners he dislikes, neighbor Ann and Thomas Putnam (Teresa Mason/Kristen Banaszak, Quentin Hoffman) accusing neighbor Rebecca Nurse (Kasey Golka, Alexandra Moncayo) of baby killing, and husband Giles Corey (Andrew Dier) casting doubts on his innocent spouse, Martha. 


    The whole misfortune is compounded by the letter of theocratic and governmental law blindly enforced by the local magistrates Deputy Governor Danforth (Anna Mizzi, Christine Jackson), Judge Hathorne (Victoria Kay, Karla Bohaty), Marshall Herrick (John Aquilina), Proctor’s neighbor and court clerk Ezekial Cheever (Brandon Tosov) and ancillary character  Hopkins (Andrew Beechel).


    The characters in Miller’s The Crucible are put to the test: integrity against hypocrisy, honesty against cowardice, power against humility, and unfortunately not all succeed.


    Challenged by this weighty topic and the preponderance of Miller’s equally weighty dialogue, both casts of the Sayville Players delivered The Crucible with serious intensity befitting the drama. Also, to great effect, Director Steve Hailey chose the minimalistic “Backstage Theatre-in-the Round” setting to uphold the intimate actor-audience relationship of this riveting masterpiece.


    Kudos go to the cast and crew and especially to Director Steve Hailey for expanding the repertoire of his actors with this true crucible in dramatic form—a test they predominately passed to the audiences’ great satisfaction.


    (See below for music and slide presentation and see attached pages for PHOTOS of Wednesday's and Saturday's performances)


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