Wisconsin's Madison Repertory Theatre's production of Rebecca Gilman's Spinning Into Butter will close this weekend at the Isthmus Playhouse in the Madison Civic Center.
Spinning Into Butter concerns a college in rural Vermont that is shaken to its very administration when racist notes are found on an African-American student's door. The socially conscious dean of students, Sarah Daniels, quickly organizes the administration to root out the cause of the racist comments through discussions and forums with students. However, in doing this, Daniels and other administrators discover there may be some prejuidice in them as they single out minorities on campus.
Commissioned and premiered at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago in 1999, Spinning went on to a successful run at New York's Lincoln Center last year. Gilman won numerous awards for Spinning, including the Robert L. Stevens Award from the Kennedy Center Fund for New American Plays. Gilman's other plays include The Glory of Living and Boy Gets Girl.
Many Madison Rep veterans have come together for this production. Associate artistic director Anne-Marie Cammarato will direct. The cast will include Diane Robinson as Sarah Daniels, Paul Boesing as Dean Burton Strauss, Richard Ganoung as Ross, Diane Dorsey as Dean Catherine Kenny, as well as Cornelio Aguilera, Nat Miller and Gerard Dedera. The design team includes Frank Schneeberger for scenery, John G. Frautschy on lighting, Jack Sayre on sound and Jeffrey D. Stolz for costumes. Kevin A. Freeman will stage manage.
In conjunction with the production, with the production, Madison Rep has hosted a number of public forums in which issues raised by the play, such as racism, are discussed. These featureed special guests — scholars, leaders and teachers — from the community in order to bring a host of perspectives to the issue. For tickets to the final performances of Spinning Into Butter call (608) 266-9055 or visit the Madison Civic Center box office at 211 State Street. For more information, call Madison Rep at (608) 256-0029, ext. 13.
— By Steve Luber