GARDINER – The Open Book Players, a performing readers theater ensemble, will present “A Cheever Evening” by A.R. Gurney on Jan. 30 and 31 at 8 p.m., and Feb. 1 at 2 p.m. in Johnson Hall.

This comedy/drama is based on stories by John Cheever, chronicler of America’s post-war angst and alienation, and how it affected a burgeoning suburban class.

In this play, Gurney, whose other well-known plays include “Love Letters” and “Sylvia,” adapts 17 of Cheever’s most funny and moving stories, and probes into the affairs of people who once felt in the majority but soon found themselves in the twilight of their power and at the mercy of a changing world.

Seen through Gurney’s dramatic sensibility, Cheever’s separate stories of a fragmented and lonely universe combine into a portrait of a culture which, while teetering on the brink of extinction, combats loss with humor, wit and feeling, according to a spokesman for the players.

The program includes several local, talented and seasoned performers: Judy Chase from North Monmouth, Jay Barnett from Augusta, Cindy Turcotte from Bowdoin, Andy Tolman from Readfield, Amy Dionne from Litchfield and Frank Omar from Hallowell.

“A Cheever Evening” is directed by Lucy Rioux of Gardiner.

Tickets, $8, can be purchased at the door. The play contains mature themes and language. FMI: can call 582-5717.

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