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AIC to stage Arthur Miller's 'All My Sons'

Date: 4/12/2013

By Aubri Bailly

SPRINGFIELD — The Theater Program at American International College (AIC) will present Arthur Miller's "All My Sons" on April19 and 20 at 7 p.m. and April 21 at 2 p.m. in the Esther B. Griswold Theatre for the Performing Arts. Admission to this play is free, but donations are appreciated.

"All My Sons" is a 1947 play based upon a true story of the Keller family and how their sons were drafted into World War II.

"This is about the end of a war. It's three years after the end of WWII and the Keller family is mourning the loss of a son in war. There are many families now who are mourning the loss of a son or a daughter in war and some of which they will never see again. Some of which they have lost their sons or daughters in the way that they remember them, as those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)," AIC Director of Theater Frank Borrelli said.

Although the play is not based on post-traumatic stress disorder itself, the Keller family is haunted by the stress and guilt they feel every day knowing the lies destroying their life. Not only was the loss of their son in war an issue, but Joe Keller, the father, is also facing accusations of a crime that caused the death of 21 pilots during the war.

"It was difficult to cast the characters because this play is a huge undertaking. There's a lot more language in terms of depth and there's a lot of secrets and familial lies, a family falling apart," Borelli said.

Benjamin Parsons, assistant director, plays the ghost of one of the sons, Larry. Parsons said he is excited about the idea of taking an experimental approach of the father seeing the ghost of his son on stage. He says this will display the father's paranoia and post-war anxiety.

Borrelli, who is new to AIC, has successfully managed to create a new Theater major and minor to those who would like to come to AIC to learn about theater. Though most of the students involved in this play are not theater majors/minors, they still dedicated their time to the play.

"People should come to the play especially for the students that are involved. They are working really hard and they are producing some really amazing work," Parsons said.

The cast includes Brian Wheeler, Neecolette Forde, Wil Mortenson, Darwin Frometa, Jenn Omegeusbeksi, Rochelle Higgins, Kevin Wilson, Ben Wright, Clarensa McCreary, Dawn Shaw and Ben Parsons.