‘Belles’ prepares for last weekend on stage

Jun 20, 2023

MARION — The cast of “Belles” at the Marion Art Center feels like they’ve had “some really good audiences” during the first two weekends of production.

“Belles” takes place in the American South during the 1990s, and tells the story of six siblings who reconnect through a series of phone calls over the course of one autumn weekend.

That’s the basic plot, but director Kate Sorenson-Young said the play’s “real story” is “gender dynamics, the family trauma, and the way that being defined as a woman by society — whether you’re just born as a woman, or identify that way — really affects interpersonal relationships: Romantic, platonic and familial.”

The show “has some really funny moments [and] it has really heartbreaking moments,” Sorenson-Young said. “But overall, I think it is incredibly relatable in [that] all the characters are hopeful … [They] can go to these dark places but at the end of the day, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.”

“I think it’s tight, I think it’s really a good show, we exceeded our expectations,” said Michele Letourneau, who plays eldest sister Peggy Reese.

According to Rosalie Fry, who plays the sporty Paige Walker, “the more we do [the show] … I think each show we’ll [do a little bit better]. Even the performances themselves are learning experiences.”

“Belles” has one more weekend of show dates at the Marion Art Center on Friday, June 23, Saturday, June 24 and Sunday, June 25. For more information, visit https://www.marionartcenter.org/events/belles/.

“I think people are getting a cathartic experience out of it which is rewarding on a different kind of level,” said Bethany Whitehead, who plays the pastor’s wife Rosanne Johnson. “I’m feeling good … it’s a special show.”