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Southtowns Buffalo Laboratory Theatre will perform ‘Cyrano’

BIG NOSE, BIG LOVE — Southtowns’ Buffalo Laboratory Theatre has been invited by Shea’s Performing Arts Center to perform “Cyrano” at 710 Main Theatre, formerly known as Studio Arena. Pictured, from left: Ray Boucher as Christian, Morgan Chard as Roxanne and Taylor Doherty as Cyrano. Photo submitted by Kathleen Golde.
In his fictionalization of Cyrano de Bergerac’s life, Edmond Rostand wrote, “My heart always timidly hides itself behind my mind. I set out to bring down stars from the sky; then, for fear of ridicule, I stop and pick little flowers of eloquence.”

The 19th century Paris-based play “Cyrano” follows the namesake who critics said was known for having a large nose and a loving heart. His schnoz is the epitome of his low self-esteem; he struggles with feelings for his female counterpart, Roxanne.

The Buffalo Laboratory Theatre, which is in house at the Swan Auditorium Theatre at Hilbert College in Hamburg, has rendered “Cyrano” in its own way. However, the Hamburg-based theater company will be performing this specific story through Shea’s Performing Arts Center in Buffalo.

“Our professional theater, which is rooted in the Southtowns, has been invited to 710 Main St.,” said Kathleen Golde, a cofounder of Buffalo Laboratory Theatre. “We’re very excited to share what we’ve been doing in Hamburg.”

Anthony Conte, president of Shea’s, reached out to select theater companies to build a first-ever full-season lineup at 710 Main Theatre, formerly known as Studio Arena. According to Golde, Conte contacted the company and, after a discussion of which performance would be most appropriate, she said “‘Cyrano’ rose to the top.”

About the theater company, Golde said she hopes “that this will encourage audiences to really realize that we have this artistic jewel in Hamburg.” Buffalo Laboratory Theatre did a production of “Cyrano” in 2010, but in keeping true to the company’s title, there have been experimentations and tweaks leading to a fresh recreation for this year’s performance.

Golde said that this adaptation of Rostand’s “Cyrano” will be fast-paced and lively, with sword-fighting, musical performances and aerial dancing. Taylor Doherty, cofounder of the Buffalo Laboratory Theatre and director of the play, will also star in the production, along with Ray Boucher, Morgan Chard and Katie White. Golde will present aerial dancing; music will be provided by David Wasik and Allison Dulanski.

A wielder of words and steel, “Cyrano” is both a poet and a swordsman. Golde explained that it is a story of love, sacrifice and the meaning of beauty.

“It’s so exciting we’re doing this [show] around Valentine’s Day,” she said. As a special holiday feature, a Valentine’s package will be available for purchase; according to Shea’s public relations department, this will include tickets to the show, dinner at Bijou Grille (which is within walking distance from the theater) and chocolate.

The love-themed package was Golde’s brain child. “I felt like if we’re going to do this in February, and folks are going to come out, they’re always looking for something to do with their date on Valentine’s Day that’s new, different and fun,” she said.

“Cyrano” will run from Feb. 6 – 23 at 710 Main Theatre in Buffalo. For ticket information, visit www.sheas.org/710main or buffalolaboratorytheatre.org. For details about the Valentine’s Day package, call 847-1410.
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