Eugene Morris Jerome is a teenager, and he is a dreamer who dreams about baseball and girls. He also daydreams about being a writer and wishes that his family will stop blaming him for everything that goes wrong. Brighton Beach Memoirs is a touching play where the story is told from the perspective of Eugene. This coming-of-age story takes place in 1937 in the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn, New York. Some people consider this semi-autobiographical play one of Neil Simon’s best works.  Ephrata Performing Arts Center’s production of Brighton Beach Memoirs is a heart-warming delight.

EPAC’s production of Brighton Beach Memoirs hits an emotional chord with the audience. The show is about family relationships and it is full of emotionally charged moments that will have the audience laughing or tearing-up. The cast is a group of extremely talented actors, and they create an unforgettable family.  Brian Soutner plays Eugene. Soutner is captivating in this role and he is perfect as Eugene. Soutner captivates the audience and draws them into his world. Quinn Corcoran portrays Stanley, Eugene’s older brother. Corcoran captures the essence of an older brother, and the interaction between Soutner and Corcoran is amazing to watch on stage.  Robin Payne plays Kate, the mother of Eugene and Stanley. She is a strong character, and keeps the family together. Payne brought forth the emotional conflict of her character. Rob Adams plays, Jack, the patriarch of this family, who offers advice to his family throughout the show. Adams effectively played the solid advice-giver and leader of this family. Cynthia Charles plays Kate’s sister, Blanche, who lost her husband and is forced to live with her sister. Blanche is a woman who is trying to cope after her loss and raise two daughters. Charles embodies Blanche with a profound sensitivity and skillfully portrays her character’s progression throughout the play. Morgan Konopelski and Olivia Brown play Blanche’s two daughters, Nora and Laurie. Konopelski successfully illustrates Nora’s passions for life, as well as shows her character’s tender heart.  Brown is charming as the youngest member of this family, and brings to life the portrayal of an overly sheltered child.

Come to EPAC and sit back, relax, and watch the story of Eugene’s family unfold in front of you on stage. There are times of laughter and there are times that a few tears will be shed, overall this show will warm the soul.  This current production of Brighton Beach Memoirs draws the audience into a world of times gone by, and draws upon the heartstrings of all those who are lucky enough to see this show.

Brighton Beach Memoirs is at EPAC through June 29, 2013. For more information and tickets call their box office at 717-733-7966 or online at

Final Thought: EPAC’s Brighton Beach Memoirs is a heart-warming show, and the cast is tremendously talented in their roles.

Kelli Curtin is editor and writer for In addition, she writes for the online sites and and is a freelance writer. Kelli is excited to share her passion about theatre and the arts with her readers. Kelli can be found on twitter @theatrescribe and on Facebook/theatresensation.

1 Responses

sIS TIERNEYSid Tierney says:
December 8, 2013, 12:15 AM

I came across this while looking for information about the 2013 Rod Stewart song "Brighton Beach." I thought EPAC meant Endicott Performing Arts Center, which I believe is about 70 miles north of Ephrata, which I believe is near Scranton (my parents' hometown). I read "Brighton Beach Memoirs" about 24 years ago, and I recall the character Kate. She inspired a character named Kate Brighton, who is alluded to in a play I wrote last year. Ironically, I had a theater major named Kate look at my script, but she never got back to me (probably because she didn't like the script). Now I wonder whether Kate likes Rod Stewart's song "Brighton Beach," which just hit #1 on my chart, after a slow five-month climb. If there were any justice, "Brighton Beach" would be a big hit, but it probably won't even chart on adult contemporary.


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