Fondren Theatre Workshop (FTW) will present the science fiction tale, “The Man From Earth,” by Jerome Bixby and Richard Schenkman, October 25-28 and November 2-4 at The Cedars in Fondren.
In the play, an impromptu farewell party for recently tenured Professor John Oldman becomes a mysterious interrogation after the scholar reveals to his colleagues that his abrupt departure is necessary because he has walked the earth for 14,000 years and must move every ten years or so to avoid detection. As the evening wears on, tempers rise and emotions flow as John’s incredible campfire story becomes just as impossible to disprove as it is to verify.
The cast includes Evan McCarley as John Oldman, along with Heather Barnes, Richard Lawrence, J.C. Patterson, Chris Roebuck, Natalie Thomas, Wayne Thomas and Jane Waugh.
The smart script features an engaging (and often funny) philosophical exploration of time, history, science, religion, and, of course, mortality. Acclaimed science-fiction writer Jerome Bixby (“The Twilight Zone” and the original “Star Trek” television series) conceived this story in the early 1960s and completed the screenplay for the cult sci-fi film of the same name on his deathbed in 1998, making it his last great work.
Sponsored in part by the Fondren Renaissance, the play will be directed by FTW co-founder Diana Howell and will be produced on the “back porch stage” of The Cedars.
FTW began its life at The Cedars long before it was renovated, and previously produced Tom Stoppard’s “Arcadia” (also directed by Howell) as one of the venue’s very first public arts events post-renovation.
All performances are slated for 7:30 p.m. Tickets will be $15 general admission, and $10 for students/senior citizens/military with I.D.
As this is an outdoor venue, patrons are encouraged to dress accordingly and to bring blankets or lawn chairs, but some seating will be available. In case of inclement weather, performances may be moved inside the building and/or tickets will be honored at a subsequent performance. No more than 45 tickets may be sold to any single performance, so patrons are STRONGLY encouraged to purchase their tickets ahead of time.
Tickets go on sale October 1 via Brown Paper Tickets (a link for tickets will be posted on the theatre’s website, fondrentheatreworkshop.org, and on the FTW Non-Profit Facebook page).
The play runs approximately 85 minutes without intermission and is rated PG for mild profanity.