• Tom Genes

TRTC Virtual Production

Carbondale’s Thunder River Theatre Company (TRTC) celebrates yet another vibrant aspect of the human condition with the upcoming virtual production, The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey. This uplifting one-man play, about a gay 14-year-old whose big personaity has an oversized impact on his conservative New Jersey town, was written by Trevor Project founder James Lecesne. The production features Henry Award-winning actor, TRTC alum and Carbondale resident, Owen O’Farrell, and is directed by Sue Lavin.



DETAILS On-Demand streaming April, 10, 11, 17 & 18 Tickets ($10-$20) for The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey are available through our video-on-demand streaming partner, ShowTix4U.com. Purchase tickets through our website at www.thunderrivertheatre.com. For questions, comments or assistance please call (970) 963-8200 Monday through Friday, 9-5 PM or email info@thunderrivertheatre.com.


Thunder River Theatre Company (TRTC) is thrilled to announce their spring production, The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey, written by James Lecesne (they, them, their), directed by Sue Lavin, and sponsored in part by local LBGTQ+ organization AspenOut. “It is a joy to bring to life a script where each character pulses with life and each word bears its weight. Owen fully commits to the inner life of each of the nine characters (to say nothing of memorizing twenty five pages of script). The play has everything our hearts need right now: humor, sadness, and the joy of characters worth caring about. Being around Leonard has been uplifting,” says Lavin. Lecesne is an American actor, author, screenwriter, and LGBTQ+ rights activist best known for their screenplay of the 1995 Academy-award-winning short film Trevor. They have written several books including Virgin Territory and Absolute Brightness, which was the fodder for The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey. In 1998, the Trevor Project, a still vibrant organization that provides lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people with a 24-hour-a-day phone support line and other resources, was founded and, thanks to a plug by Ellen DeGeneres for the HBO premiere of the film “Trevor,” 1,500 people called the Trevor Project on its first day. In order to keep audiences safe and to properly abide by state and county COVID guidelines as the pandemic has unfolded, TRTC has announced their 2020-2021 season offerings one at a time this year. Lavin says, “While the pandemic has seriously constrained all of our lives, this play has opened up my life, given it an artistic focus, and the opportunity to bring to life a profound script on a timely topic. The color and life of the script have stood up to the isolation and fears of COVID.” PLAY SUMMARY for The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey Leonard Pelkey, a tenaciously flamboyant gay 14-year-old boy overflowing with self-assured optimism, becomes an unexpected inspiration for his conservative town as its citizens question their beliefs about how they live, who they love and what they leave behind. Henry Award-winning actor and Roaring Fork Valley local Owen O’Farrell portrays nine different characters in this one-man tour de force that will leave you grabbing for the Kleen-ex while you are reminded of the big -no, fabulously enormous!- difference that even just one person can make in the world. “...leaves you beaming with joy…” —NY Times “…an affecting and entertaining testament to the beauty of a world in which difference is celebrated rather than denigrated.” —LA Times **The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York. TICKET & PERFORMANCE

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