Open Forum

Almost, Maine 2018 edition

  • 1.  Almost, Maine 2018 edition

    Posted 04-24-2019 13:12
    Does anyone know what the revisions were/are to the 2018 edition of Almost, Maine?  I did this about 8 years ago, and I was considering this for next year, but I only know it based on the earlier edition.

    thanks for your insight.

    Holly Thompson
    Worthington OH

  • 2.  RE: Almost, Maine 2018 edition

    Posted 04-24-2019 17:27
    Here is a letter from John Cariani that accompanied the script changes I received from Dramatists when I produced the play earlier this year.  Given our current climate, the changes are probably for the better.  All in all, the spirit and intent of the scenes that were changed are the same.

    Dear Reader,

    After a performance of the Off-Broadway production of Almost, Maine in 2006, a friend told me that she was troubled by the behavior of one of the men in the play. In Scene 1 ("Her Heart"), a man, East, unexpectedly kisses a woman, Glory, whom he has just met. He does this three times, even after Glory asks him to stop. My friend warned me that it seemed that East was imposing himself on a woman and that his behavior cast a shadow over the rest of the play. I defended the scene-and myself-arguing that I never intended for "Her Heart" to be a story about a man imposing himself on a woman. In my mind, the scene is a magical story about two people falling in love. I thought East's actions were perfectly justifiable.

    I have come to realize that East's actions are in no way justifiable. They're unacceptable, no matter what I intended. And they're not at all in the spirit of Almost, Maine. So I have rewritten "Her Heart" for this, the third revised edition of Almost, Maine. The scene now tells the story I intended to tell, which is one of two people awakening to love. In the new version, Glory is falling for East as hard and as fast as East is falling for her. All feelings are completely mutual, and Glory and East both act on these feelings-not just East.

    I have also edited Scene 8, "Seeing the Thing." I removed language that labels romance or expressions of love or kindness or tenderness as gendered (i.e., feminine). (Expressing love or kindness or tenderness isn't gender-specific-it's human.) I also changed the language that Rhonda's friends use to describe her; and I rewrote what happens after Dave unexpectedly kisses Rhonda. In the new version of the scene, Rhonda lets Dave know that his behavior is inappropriate-but she also tells him that she feels for him the way he feels for her. All feelings are mutual as Rhonda and Dave take their relationship to the next level.

    I would like to thank everyone who encouraged me to make these changes. Almost, Maine is better for them. And special thanks go out to Aislinn Frantz, Beth Blickers, Haleh Stillwell, Ibi Janko, Wendy Stetson, Caroline Kinsolving, Rebecca Harris, Sophie DeBruijn, Casey Landman, Kelly McAndrew, and Donna Lynne Champlin for reading the new versions of the scenes and guiding me as I rewrote them.

    Sincerely, John Cariani January, 2018

    Derek Friederich
    Thespian Troupe 417/Speech Coach/Jr. High Drama/Fine Arts Center Technical Director
    Postville IA

  • 3.  RE: Almost, Maine 2018 edition

    Posted 04-24-2019 19:41
    For what it's worth, my students and I LOVE the new script!  We did the old one a few years ago, and we had concerns about a couple of scenes where there were consent issues.  When the new script came out we were really excited to see that the spirit of the characters and play overall remained the same, but without those concerns.  We're Mainers, and this play has a close place in the heart of my program -- it was really meaningful to my students to get to see Cariani's self reflection and revision process.  I don't think you'd be disappointed with the revision!

    Josie Tierney-Fife
    English Teacher/Theater Director
    Gorham, Maine