Thursday, October 18, 2018
A new adaptation of John Steinbeck’s iconic novel, “East of Eden,” is coming to the NextStop stage. The adaptation by Frank Galati chronicles a family’s grand saga through a symbolic retelling of the Biblical Cain and Abel story, but set in California.
Asked about “East of Eden” as a play, Evan Hoffman, director of the production noted that “East of Eden” is an “American epic examining whether ‘good versus evil’ is our great choice or our unavoidable fate.”
The play explores Adam Trask, determined to build a new life and world for himself and his young wife, Cathy. Settling in California’s Salinas Valley, Cathy gives birth to twin boys. But a dark past, with apparent insurmountable sins, and the impending danger of World War I threaten their special corner of paradise.
Hoffman indicated that the the production is full of emotions. Also, “aside from being exceptional performers, we are proud to have re-imagined this story with a far more diverse cast than John Steinbeck probably intended. However, I truly believe that it serves to improve and highlight the universality of the story. It demonstrates how every single human struggles with the great choices and search for love and acceptance.”
The character Adam Trask is portrayed by Zach Brewster-Geisz. “Like the novel, our adaptation is an entertaining work, not a musty ’classic.’ In addition, because multiple actors are playing single characters the audience can expect to really think about how people change as they age.”
Nina Marti portrays Abra; a brave, independent woman. “Perhaps one of the most compelling elements of ‘East of Eden’ is the universality of its themes. It explores how individuals navigate morality, how they bear the burden of choice and consequence, and how family history influences both journeys. It's easy for anyone to find a bit of their own struggle reflected in the narrative.”
John Sygar plays two characters including Cal Trask, one of Adam Trask’s twin sons. “The script is universally relevant and timeless. It deals with issues that we can never get away from as humans such as our parents expectations and how we define and create ourselves. …The story will hit you in places long forgotten in your heart and make you question the nature of love.”
Inviting audiences, Hoffman said; “It is an unbelievably powerful story, with exceptionally fascinating characters and a story that is equally complex and universal. Please join us.”
NextStop Theatre presents “East of Eden,” performing at 269 Sunset Park Drive, (Inside the Sunset Business Park), Herndon. Performances: Oct. 25 to Nov. 18, 2018. Call 866-811-4111 or visit www.nextstopthetre.org.