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ISU presents “Lost in Yonkers”, directed by Jane Lynch

Written by on May 6, 2023

NORMAL, Ill. – “Lost in Yonkers” by Neil Simon was performed on May 5 at 7:30 p.m. at the Center for the Performing Arts at Illinois State University. The production was directed by Jane Lynch.

The play tells the story of Jay and Arty, two brothers who are sent to live with their estranged grandmother for 10 months after their father must leave to become a traveling salesman.

Jane Lynch directed a staged reading of the play as a part of her guest artist in residency. She started the production on April 17.

The show was sold-out on the first performance and concluded after two acts that lasted approximately two hours. There was an additional performance on May 6 with a different set of actors.

The event had an opportunity for all guests to support both the visiting artists fund and the LGBTQ+ student support fund.

After the performance, Director of the School of Theatre and Dance Ann Haugo and Lynch joined the cast on stage for a talkback with the audience.

Lynch talked about how she helped the actors prepare for their roles and understand the characters.

“We bonded as a group before every rehearsal and this show,” she said. “We understood what the characters and wanted and wanted from each other.”

Senior acting major Cameron Pride spoke on what it was like to work with Lynch, they played the role of Jay on the May 5 performance.

“Within the first few minutes of working with her on the first day, I got over being starstruck,” said Pride. “She is so personable.”

The production also involved a dramaturgy team, led by Lynch’s mentor Al Goldfarb. As well as a costume coordinator and sound and technical directors.

When asked about returning to ISU to direct, Lynch expressed she would be interested in doing so again.