Theater-goers interested in a dramatic treatment of the timely themes in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” have multiple opportunities this month to see the play in Tonasket.
Featuring actors from Brewster to Oroville, ages 18 to 72, the adaptation of Ken Kesey’s novel tells the story from the point of view of Chief Bromden (Dayton Edmonds), highlighting the Native American experience in a mental institution in the 1960s.
The dramatic conflict between patient R.P. McMurphy (played by Jack Nicholson in the 1975 Hollywood movie) and Nurse Ratched is paramount. The other characters and visitors add dark humor and exciting physical theater.
The play addresses many contemporary themes, including bullying, homophobia, sexual harassment and the history of mental health, said director Sarah Kaiser. “It’s not dated at all — and it’s funny,” she said.
The play will be preceded by a showing of a short film from 1958 about the flooding of Celilo Falls on the Columbia River, which will be screened several times during the 30 minutes before the show starts.
“Cuckoo’s Nest” is being produced by the Tonasket Community Theater and will be performed at the Community Cultural Center in Tonasket. Their annual theater production is the major fundraiser for the center.
Tickets are $10. People can have tickets held by calling the center at (509) 486-1328. The play is not recommended for young audiences.
Performances are at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 10–12, and Saturday, Nov. 19. There are matinee performances at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 13 and Nov. 20.