Whittler's Bench presented by 40+ Stage Company

On The 40+ Stage: Whittlers' Bench

40+ Stage Company was founded on the principle that in the second stage in life, despite the onset of physical limitations in the advanced years, every individual has a contribution to make to the community and is deserving of the respect due an elder. David Ratcliffe’s “Whittlers’ Bench” embodies this commitment for our company.

With pocket knives instead of cell phones and a bench in the park instead of Facebook, the retired dudes of the community socialize in person every day that the weather is good. As the play opens, Curtis Elroy has lost a good friend in Yancey Hargrove. Yancey, however, comes back as a ghost to tell Curtis that his granddaughter Amanda is enduring a problem that is out of her control. Curtis rallies the gang—Ben Ford, Frank Tyson and Vernon Cunningham who congregate around the park bench each day—and stirs them to take action.

Will these unlikely heroes save the day or give their neighbors something new to laugh about. It all adds up to a warm-hearted story to which playwright Ratcliff provides a stunning conclusion.

Performances will be held at the Mountcastle Forum, Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts, November 11, 12, 18, and 19 at 7:30 pm with matinees November 13 and 20. Talk-back with the cast and playwright following the November 11 matinee.

Tickets available at online, by phone at (336) 747-1414, or at the door.


40+ Stage Company: A Company for All Ages, Relevant, Challenging, and Intergenerational

40+ Stage Company believes in the transformative power of theater. Our play selection focuses on issues of intergenerational concern and relevance to our community today. We want to provide actors of all ages with opportunities to perform in meaningful, challenging roles. As an amateur company, we are committed to the highest standards of performance.

Our outreach program extends to organizations provide services and moral support to the aging. Acting, as a performance art form, requires engaging with others and practicing and honing listening skills, memory reliability, and introspection. A creative lifestyle in the afternoon years has a demonstrative positive effect in overcoming depression, isolation, addiction, and a host of conditions often associated with growing older.

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