The Boys Next Door - logoThe Boys Next Door
by Tom Griffin

June 3 - 25, 1994
Directed by Kenneth Benton

The place is a communal residence in a New England city, where four mentally handicapped men live under the supervision of an earnest, but increasingly "burned out" young social worker named Jack.

Norman, who works in a doughnut shop and is unable to resist the lure of the sweet pastries, takes great pride in the huge bundle of keys which dangles from his waist; Lucien P. Smith has the mind of a five-year-old, but imagines that he is able to read and comprehend the weighty books which he lugs about; Arnold, the ringleader of the group, is a hyperactive, compulsive chatterer, who suffers from deep-seated insecurities and a persecution complex; while Barry, a brilliant schizophrenic who is devastated by the unfeeling rejection of his brutal father, fantasizes that he is a golf pro.

Marcellus Hankins, Terry Veal, Nick Backes, Lilli Bassett, and James Gordon in THE BOYS NEXT DOOR

Mingled with scenes from the daily lives of these four, where "little things" sometimes become momentous (and often very funny), are moments of great poignancy when, with touching effectiveness, we are reminded that the handicapped, like the rest of us, want only to love and laugh and find some meaning and purpose in the brief time which they, like their more fortunate brothers, are allotted on this earth.



Director's Notes

This is a play that warms the heart. It is also a comedy about the joy of life. Mr. Griffin's original title for the play was DAMAGED HEARTS, BROKEN FLOWERS which, although a great title, implies that the play is a little on the heavy side. For us who have worked together on this production, it is not a heavy show, but rather a celebration of life. The story does concern a group of adults, some of whom are classified as having different levels of mental retardation. Yet, they are basically a very happy group of people who choose to participate to the best of their ability in everything that comes their way in life. I hope that you enjoy your visit with THE BOYS NEXT DOOR.

- Kenneth Benton


Arnold Wiggins

  Terry Veal
Lucien P. Smith   Marcellus Hankins
Jack Palmer   Nick Backes
Norman Bulansky   James A. Gordon, Jr.
Barry Klemper   Scotty Gannon
Mr. Hedges   Chuck Swann
Mrs. Fremus   Pam Fields
Mrs. Warren   Marilyn Ragan
Sheila   Lilli Bassett
Clara   Pam Fields
Mr. Corbin   Charles Dair
Mr. Klemper   Bob Cross
Senator Clarke   Chuck Swann
Understudy   Lydia Marie King


Director   Kenneth Benton
Tech Director   Joe Daleo
Stage Manager   Marilyn Ragan
Set Design   Joe Daleo
Light Board   Sally Noakes
Sound Board   Lydia Marie King
Running Crew   Pam Fields
Choreographer   Dawn Behrens
Business Manager   Ron Martin


Richard Kleffman - Dr. Laurel Van Horn - Mary Dean - Jonathan Roberts - Choctaw Living Center - Lyn Adams - Jimmy Vaughn - Oklahoma Children's Theatre - Buster Bassett - Ron Martin - April Harrington

Produced by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc.


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