BRISTOL — ECT season opener explores love and second chances in the community theatre premiere of “Now and Then.”

Elkhart Civic Theatre’s 2019-20 season starts off with an off-beat, funny, touching comedy, Now and Then by Sean Grennan.

The show runs Sept. 6, 7, 8, 13, 14 and 15 at the Bristol Opera House.

Now and Then is an unbelievable, funny and ultimately moving story about love and its wayward ways, according to theatre officials.

Jamie is a young aspiring pianist working as a bartender. He is closing up for the night when an amiable older gentleman, who seems to know the place very well, enters and engages him in a friendly conversation.

Jamie’s girlfriend Abby comes in. They are very much in love. Before they know it, the gentleman offers them a thousand dollars – each – to sit and just talk with him for one hour. They both could use the money and with some reluctance agree, and then hear an incredible story that changes their lives. It’s a surprising fable about what it means to really love someone.

“Now and Then” is receiving its community theatre premiere at Elkhart Civic Theatre (the play isn’t even officially published yet), and director John Shoup and the cast have been in contact with the author, Sean Grennan, getting ideas and suggestions for the production.

 “It’s been great fun creating a show with little history. It allows the cast and directing team a real chance to explore characters and relationships with no pre-conceived notions of right or wrong. And the story line ... let’s just say it leaves you guessing and hoping love will find a way,” Shoup said.

Shoup is assisted by Amy Pawlosky. The cast is as follows:

Jamie – Brett Noneman

Abby – Kelsey Crump

Man – Patrick Farran

Woman – Stacey Nickel

For more than 50 years, Elkhart Civic Theatre has been providing high-quality theatrical performances from its home base at the historic Bristol Opera House in Bristol, according to theatre officials. The company does, however, enjoy the occasional road trip – usually to AACT competitions for community theatres around the country. Over the years, ECT has gained statewide and regional recognition as one of the best community theatres in the Midwest, and has taken honors at the national level as well, its operators said in a press statement.

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