Last Train to Nibroc
By Arlene Hutton
A COVID-SAFE DRIVE IN LIVE THEATRE EXPERIENCE
Provo Towne Centre, Mark Kindred, Scott Bowles, Kelly Nelson, Chris and Doug Shorts
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Artistic Director's Note
They say "the only things in life you can count on is change," but even in these uncertain times, “change” feels more like hopelessness or inherent pessimism. Luckily, we as humans found a way billions of years ago to survive through tough times: creating beautiful and meaningful art. “Art,” as Pablo Picasso says, “washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” Though our everyday lives might be filled with fear of continued disaster, pain and destruction, let them be eased tonight with a beautiful show, wonderful actors and a team who can promise safety and distanced productions for you, your loved ones and our community as a whole. As the new Co Artistic Director for An Other Theatre Company, I can attest that our team’s concern to fill our seats will never override our commitment to keep our loyal and loving audience members and staffs healthy and safety.
As we continue make it our promise to bring beauty and meaningful performances to the world with our art as a company, we urge our incredible community for their support. If your means can allow, please make a donation using the button below to help us keep the theatre up and running. Any dollar amount is incredibly appreciated.
With all of our love and well wishes,
Shelby Noelle Gist
New Co Artistic Director
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On June 6, 1933 the first drive-in movie theater opened in New Jersey and quickly became a staple and icon of early 20th century Americana. Seven years later, a pair of strangers, May and Raleigh, step onto a train headed east from Los Angeles. Even though these two aren’t real, instead just an imagination of Last Train to Nibroc, their fictional story of the past takes place here, in our reconstructed and reimagined format of their own time--the drive in.
There’s something magical about stepping into the past not only in story but in format. In the way we are physically experiencing the story laid out in front of us. This production is truly unique in that the lens of the drive in format and the story itself are definitely of the past, but the live actors physically in front of us have us rooted, indelibly in the present. The now. 2020. A year of uncertainty, a year of challenges, and a year of evolution. In order to bring this production to you at a time when gathering indoors isn’t feasible in our tiny space, we took our inspiration from the ingenuity of that first drive in on June 6, 1933. Here we can gather, safely, distanced in our cars, and connect with the past in a way to hopefully learn a bit from it. So why this play?
For those of you who have seen one of our productions in the past, you’ll know that we gear toward more adult-fare. Nibroc, however, is a completely family-friendly experience. The choice seemed simple enough to me. Our theater was founded to give an alternative to the family friendly productions that saturate the Utah Valley theater scene. We believed there was a space and need for theater created for the adult audience member. But right now there are nearly no truly safe options for anyone of any age to enjoy the theater. So instead we’re fulfilling our goal of inclusiveness this time around by providing something with content that can usually be found elsewhere under normal circumstances--namely all-age entertainment--when the circumstances aren’t normal.
This doesn’t mean that Nibroc is all fluff, by any means. Its themes of invisible disability, classism, and shame brought on by expectation is pumping through its veins with every beat of its romantic heart. I love this play. I love what I’ve learned from it. And I love that we can all escape the uncertainty of 2020 for the inevitable certainty of May and Raleigh’s story, and drive home tonight all the richer for it.