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CMC play will have two-weekend run


Bob Moore, left, as Andrey Botvinnik, and Gary Ketzenbarger, right, as John Honeymoon, in the CMC Theatre production of “A Walk in the Woods,” which opens tonight at the New Space Theatre at Spring Valley and continues for two weekends. Post-Independent photo.

Bob Moore, left, as Andrey Botvinnik, and Gary Ketzenbarger, right, as John Honeymoon, in the CMC Theatre production of “A Walk in the Woods,” which opens tonight at the New Space Theatre at Spring Valley and continues for two weekends. Post-Independent photo.

By John Stroud, Post Independent Staff

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado — Though set in Geneva, Switzerland during the Cold War, Lee Blessing’s “A Walk In the Woods” offers a timeless message that carries over to any modern-day issue of importance for which opposing sides must come together.

“I first saw the play about 15 years ago, and fell in love with the dialogue,” said Bob Moore, who plays the part of Russian arms negotiator Andrey Botvinnik in the Colorado Mountain College Theatre production of the play, which opens tonight at 7 p.m. in the New Space Theatre at Spring Valley.

“It’s a universal message that’s not restricted to the time of the Cold War,” he said. “In fact, it’s still very relevant today as we debate the issues that affect us greatly today.

“The play humanizes the negotiators, and makes a broad statement on the effectiveness of getting to know people on a different level,” Moore said.

“A Walk In the Woods” is about two superpower arms negotiators, Botvinnik and American John Honeymoon, played by CMC Theatre Program Director Gary Ketzenbarger.

According to the Dramatist’s Play Service, the two meet informally for a walk in the woods after long, frustrating hours at the bargaining table with the knowledge that the elemental differences in their two governments will continue to exacerbate as long as the real power rests in the hands of those burdened by the bitterness of the past.

The play is directed collaboratively by Wendy Moore.

“What I like about it is, there is such a human need for connection,” she said. “Even though they’re talking about the potential for destruction of the entire planet, there’s still that need to connect and find a commonality between them.”

Adds Bob Moore, “No government has ever been rational … about nuclear weapons. And now, even more countries have them and need to have a seat at the negotiating table.

“I only hope,” he says, “that the real negotiators have the same sense of humanity as the two characters in this play.”

Ketzenbarger said he hadn’t heard of the play until Wendy Moore mentioned it as a prospective play for CMC Theatre.

“I’ve long been wanting to work with Bob on stage,” said Ketzenbarger, who directed a play, “The Oldest Profession,” in which Bob Moore played a character who had no lines.

“I’ve seen Bob do a lot of wonderful work, and wanted to join him on stage with some actual dialogue,” he said. “The play takes place in four scenes, with each scene reflecting a season across a year in the life of these two men.”

Others involved in the production are student set designers Dylan Derryberry and Jessica Blosser, CMC Theatre Managing Director China Kwan Clancy, with lighting design by former CMC Theatre director Tom Cochran.

Performances are at 7 p.m. nightly continuing Dec. 4, 5, 11 and 12, with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, Dec. 13. The CMC Spring Valley campus is located at 3000 County Road 114.

Tickets are $15 for general admission and $10 for students and seniors. Advance ticket reservations are advised by calling 947-8177 or e-mail svticketsales@coloradomtn.edu.

This story was reprinted from the Dec. 3 issue of the Post Independent.