‘Almost, Maine’ explores the complexities to connect, love and build relationships


Sandhya Bhandari

Washburn University Theatre presented “Almost, Maine,” a play written by John Cariani. The play consisted of nine different scenes with enough roles for twenty actors.

Washburn University’s Theatre presented “Almost, Maine,” a play written by John Cariani. The play consisted of nine different scenes with enough roles for twenty actors. Only nine students from Washburn Theatre represented the show, which allowed for students to play multiple characters.. The students who acted in the play were Seth Klayson, Grey McCollum, Grace Ellis, Jake Andersen, Josh Staats, Lauren Province, Erin Watts, Hannah Andersen and Sam Revel all played different characters.

Each scene explored a distinct facet of love, relationships and human connection with a comedic tone.

The play showed all the incidents that took place on the scene on a cold, clear Friday night in the middle of winter. The scenes are set in various locations around the town, such as a bar, a living room and an open field in the northeastern United States.

Deb Burner, the theater shop manager, designed the show’s set to arrange and reflect the atmosphere of different places in and around the town of Almost, Maine. The costumes were designed by Ron Zastrow.

“Almost, Maine” was directed by Ted Shonka, a lecturer in communication studies. According to Shonka every student actor plays at least two different characters so that they won’t get confined to one type of character. He felt the student actors will be able to increase their talent and expertises as an actor.

“Student actors who act on different personalities will also increase their acting talents and tactics so that they can dissolve into distinct personalities easily in the future with experience,” Shonka said.

In many of the scenes, the show involved characters struggling to communicate with each other in their relationships. “Almost, Maine” highlights the importance of clear communication in relationships and how it leads to misunderstandings, missed opportunities to be together and hurting someone’s feelings.

The play shows how changes occur from the excitement and joy of falling in love to all its complexity, pain and heartbreak while losing it. While also reminding people that love is not always straightforward and that relationships can be very messy and complicated.

Mousam Bhandari, a freshman majoring in computer information science, says that openness is necessary for deep connections and meaningful relationships.

“The show highlighted the importance of clear communication in relationships and how timing impacts their existence,” Bhandari said.

The play also explored the concept that timing directly impacts relationships and their existence. Some characters in “Almost, Maine” struggled with missed opportunities and regret, while others learn to appreciate the moment and seize the chance when it arises.

“Almost, Maine ” showed that love can take place in diverse forms and transform from romantic to platonic and platonic to love between family members. The play represented how people can connect with and care for each other.

Andrew Orr, a sophomore majoring in sociology, found the show very fascinating and influential.

“There are various challenges and obstacles, but we should find ways to connect with each other in love. Human emotions are complex, so they need appreciation to cultivate healthier and more fulfilling relationships,” Orr said.

By watching this show, people can get potential takeaways depending on every part of the scene and their interpretation.

It mainly touched on themes of love, loss and human connection while offering insights into the complexities of love and relationships. It encourages individuals to reflect on their relationships and evaluate what they can do to strengthen them.

To view more details on upcoming shows visit Washburn Theatre.

Edited by Cee Spiller, LeSha’ Davis and Simran Shrestha