Very Little Theatre to present 'Harvey' in August

The Very Little Theatre concludes its 90th season with “Harvey,” the delightful, Pulitzer Prize-winning classic play by Mary Chase, directed by Kari Boldon Welch.

“Working with a classic play doesn’t mean re-creating what has been done but re-imagining with fresh eyes and bringing timeless themes to light,” said Welch. “This play is funny and poignant with some fun surprises thrown in.”

In the story, social-climbing Veta has been trying to introduce her daughter, Myrtle Mae, into society but that isn’t easy as her dear brother, Elwood P. Dowd, is constantly underfoot with his best friend, Harvey — a six-and-a-half-foot-tall rabbit whom only he can see (or is he the only one?). Veta’s attempt to commit Elwood to a sanitarium goes awry and ends up with Veta being treated for hallucinations at Chumley’s Rest, while Elwood and Harvey head to Charlie’s Place, a local tavern, to greet friends. As everyone scrambles to fix the mix-up, Harvey weaves his way into not just Elwood’s psyche but our own and the true meaning of connection with our fellow man is revealed.

The cast features Russell Dyball as Elwood P. Dowd, Mary McCoy as Veta Louise Simmons, Sarah Nesslin as Myrtle Mae Simmons, Eve James as Miss Johnson, Susan Creed as Mrs. Ethel Chauvenet, Katelyn Lewis as Ruth Kelly RN, Adam Leonard as Duane Wilson, Kelly Oristano as Lyman Sanderson MD, Rod Anderson as William R Chumley MD, Tere Tronson as Betty Chumley, Hershell Norwood as Judge Omar Gaddney and Dave Smith as EJ Lofgren.

Michael Walker is the set and lighting designer and Rebecca Blanchard is the costumer. The play also features art work by middle schooler Emily Simms.

An Opening Night Gala with refreshments following the show is open to all those who purchase tickets to the Friday, Aug. 9 performance.

Performance dates are Friday through Sunday, Aug. 9-11; Thursday through Sunday, Aug. 15-18; and Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 22-24. Curtain time for each performance is 7:30 p.m. except for the 2 p.m. Sunday matinees.

Reserved seat tickets are $21; senior and student admission is $17.

Tickets go on sale today, July 17, and are available online at, or through the Box Office from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, or by calling 541-344-7751.

— Submitted by By Mary Chase