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Lake Oswegos Virginia Kincaid takes the lead as teddy bear toting Ethel P. Savage

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Having her teddy bear constantly with her leads Ethel P. Savage's stepchildren to believe she is not 100 percent sane. Lake Oswego actress Virginia Kincaid stars as Savage in the New Century Players' production of 'The Curious Savage' opening tomorrow at the Rex Putnam High School Blackbox Theater.  SUBMITTED PHOTOThe New Century Players open “The Curious Savage” tomorrow at the Rex Putnam Blackbox Theater, 4950 SE Roethe Road, Milwaukie. The play was written by John Patrick and is directed by Todd Tschida.

Appearing in the leading role of Ethel P. Savage is Virginia Kincaid — who recently moved to Lake Oswego from Omaha, Neb.— and claims that “amateur theater is my bliss.”

In “The Curious Savage,” Mrs. Savage has been left $10 million when her husband dies and she wants to make the best use of it, in spite of the efforts of her grown stepchildren to get their hands on it. The self-serving stepchildren commit Mrs. Savage to an asylum, hoping to bring her to her senses.

Aided and abetted by the other residents at the asylum, Mrs. Savage leads the stepchildren on a merry chase, reminding all that the neglected virtues of kindness and affection have not been entirely lost.

“There is a lot of family sparring going on over the $10 million,” said Kincaid. “I sort of send the stepchildren off on a wild goose chase, telling them where I’ve hidden the bonds, but of course they aren’t where I tell them. There are great comic instances and a lot of sweet, bittersweet meaningful instances.

One of the central items is Mrs. Savage’s teddy bear, which she keeps with her at all times, which of course, gives you the flavor that maybe she isn’t 100 percent after all...”

Lake Oswego actor Jeremy Southard plays Hannibal, a resident at the asylum. Hannibal used to be a statistician for the government but was replaced by an electronic calculator. He spends much of his time playing the violin and considers himself a fine musician, though it is apparent he has no musical talent.

“I enjoy the caring and affectionate relationship the residents of the cloisters have with each other and the way they extend that kindness to Mrs. Savage,” Southard said. “It’s definitely a comic play, but there is a great deal of heart in the writing. I hope the audience comes away with a sense of the power and healing that simple kindness can provide. That’s a good message to send out in this cynical and divided world we live in today.”

“The Curious Savage” opens tomorrow, Nov. 9 at 7:30 p.m. at Rex Putnam High School’s Blackbox Theater, 4950 SE Roethe Road, Milwaukie. The show continues Nov. 10, 15, 16 and 17 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 11 and 18 at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $18 for adult general admission and $12 for students and seniors. Tickets can be purchased online at newcenturyplayers.org. For more information, call 503-367-2620.

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