A scene from Ugly Ducklings, which will be performed
September 15-17 at Colby College in Waterville.
Jackie Gershman-Mannocchi, Gabrielle Van Horn, Hannah Lennett, and Abby McCann; Foreground: Hannah Frankel

Ugly Ducklings, a gothic thriller about harassment and bullying, will be presented at Colby College, September 15-17. Performances are Thursday and Friday, September 15 and 16, at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, September 17, at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., in Strider Theater, Runnals Building, on the Waterville campus. Admission is $2 for teens, college students, and senior citizens and $10 for general admission.

Presented by a stunning cast of Maine girls and women, Ugly Ducklings explores homophobia at a girls’ summer camp in Maine. The play confronts the taboo subject of child and teen suicide precipitated by bias-based harassment among peers as well as the denial and rejection of a lesbian teen by adults. The play was written by Maine playwright Carolyn Gage and directed by Cathy Plourde of Portland-based Add Verb Productions.

Angie (played by Jenna Schmitz), a middle-class college student, is falling in love with another counselor at the camp, Ren&#00e9;e (played by Chanel Romney), who is a working-class “out” lesbian. Against a backdrop of homophobia, the young women struggle with their feelings for each other and the problems of defining themselves in a society that insists they be invisible. The camp legend about a monster in the lake parallels the adult phobias about lesbianism, and campers and counselors are compelled to face their worst fears in the microcosmic world of the summer camp.

Ugly Ducklings is part of an upcoming national campaign by Hardy Girls Healthy Women and Greater Waterville’s Communities for Children & Youth to end bias-based bullying and harassment of gay and lesbian youth.

Ugly Ducklings is suitable for adults and accompanied children ages 14 and older. The performance is two hours long. General admission is $10; teens, Colby students and seniors are $2. For ticket information, call the box office at 859-4535 between 5 and 7:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday the week of the performance. Or call 859-4521 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Additional performances at Colby College this fall (all in Strider Theater):

Friday, September 30 and Saturday, October 1, 7:30 p.m.
The English language premiere of a poetic, fascinating, often terrifying tale drawn from actual events. Written by Alan Clark, co-directed by Alan Clark and Richard Sewell.

Wednesday, October 12 – Friday, October 14
Shenandoah Shakespeare
Black Friars Stage Company: The Atomic Fission Tour

Wednesday, October 12, 7:30 p.m.
Much Ado About Nothing
One of Shakespeare’s most delightful comedies delivers both witty barbs and broad farce.

Thursday, October 13, 7:30 p.m.
Richard III
Richard, Duke of Gloucester, takes the audience into his confidence as he plots to kill everyone before him in line for the throne.

Friday, October 14, 7:30 p.m.
Return to the Forbidden Planet
Rock ‘n’ roll music, a sci-fi fantasy, and dialogue from the greatest plays ever written will keep you laughing and jamming through the cosmos.

Thursday, November 17 – Saturday, November 19, 7:30 p.m.
A Servant to Two Masters
In this original adaptation by Julie Goell, from the Lee Hall version of A Servant to Two Masters by Carlo Goldoni, two lovers separated by circumstance unwittingly share the same servant in this classic gender-bending comedy of errors. Directed by Julie Goell, music direction by Eva Linfield.

For all performances except Ugly Ducklings, tickets are $2 with Colby I.D. and for seniors; $3 general admission. Box office is open Monday through Saturday during the week of the performance from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.