City Park Players Presents “The Melville Boys”

If you’re looking for some live entertainment this weekend City Park Players has a show at the Hearn Stage of the Kress Theater in downtown Alexandria. ABC News’ Joel Massey spoke with the director an stars of the play and has this review.

The Melville Boys is a tender comedy about love and loss and the City Park Players have done a top notch job bringing this story to the stage.  New Orleans native Alana Pate is the director and had this to say about the plot:

“It explores the nuances of anticipating loss, this false comfort of denial that we like to stay in for various reasons of life that hits us and I would say the fear of not tapping into our potential.”

The play is set in an Illinois fishing camp and stars Steven Smith as Owen Melville and Rick Taylor as his brother Lee, who we discover has a terminal illness.

“It’s a family show in that it’s about two brothers who meet two sisters and we really feel that as a cast.  It’s been really nice.  It’s been a real pleasant experience.  It’s a lot of work and time and effort, but it didn’t always feel that way.  It was fun.

“Rehearsed two three hours a night three or four days a week.  Then we shifted over here to the Kress Theater and got the set built with the help of Jim Weinzettle who is amazing, and now we’re in this space yeah it’s just part of the process. The more time you can spend in the space the more familiar you’ll be with it.  It just comes across as more natural having lived in it.”

Owen Melville is a funny, excitable boisterous character and Smith who plays him is a veteran actor.

“Community theater has been something I’ve been involved in for quite some time.  Not here in Central Louisiana, I’m originally from South Louisiana, Lafayette area.  I did plays down there.  I was looking for something up here and found City Park Players.  It’s been a great experience I realized there’s more of a community involvement with everyone taking their part in one thing or another.

“It’s such a fun script.  And the character of Owen is just free spirited, let’s party, let’s just have fun.  Just getting into the role of that character has just been a joy.”

This is the first time that Steven has worked with Alana Pate and he says she is a pro.

“She gives direction well she’s real easy to work with.  She’ll tell you to do something and it’s almost like our minds would link and I’m like that’s exactly what I was thinking we should do in this part.  So it was just a real easy experience.”

With only five weeks of rehearsal Alana is impressed with how fast the show came together.  She has this to say to potential audience members.

“I think that the show is worth it.  I think everybody needs to come see it.  So come on out.”

A lot of work went into setting the stage for this play.  So if you have the acting bug or it’s something you’ve always wanted to try contact City Park Players.  There’s plenty of opportunities available.

The play runs this Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 with a 2:30 matinee on Sunday.  Tickets are 15 dollars at the door.  For more information on how to become involved or to find out about upcoming shows please visit