Portrait play sheds light on back-to-land movement

Apr 22, 2019

BELFAST — {elbow room} presents "The Seekers" by Kristin Frangoulis, a portrait play about the back to land movement, on Saturday, April 27, from 7 to 9 p.m., at Waterfall Arts Fallout Shelter, 256 High St. Entry is by donation.

Frangoulis tells the story of the original “back to the landers,” who came to Midcoast Maine forty years ago seeking a better life. She focuses on the impetus for a variety of characters for migrating to Maine — “they were escaping the Vietnam War, the politics of assassination, consumerism and the corporate world. These idealists craved a purer and simpler life of quiet self- sufficiency.” Their story is told in poetry, monologues and music — in performances by Marjorie Arnett, Lincoln Blake, Howard Engleskirchen, George Frangoulis, Christine Le Gore, Nancy Perkins, Amy Robbins Wilson and Tycelia Santora. The performance will be followed by discussion. Bring your stories about the back to land movement.

Like others involved in the movement, Maine’s Back to the Landers were concerned with population growth and progress, along with quality of life. In 1972, the Club of Rome presented its findings on exponential growth and earth’s finite resources at the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm. Their findings, published in Limits to Growth, would eventually sell more than 30 million copies. Frangoulis’ work chronicles the idealism and day-to-day labors of several characters for whom the land was no longer an abstraction.

Frangoulis is a published poet who chronicles her life in Belfast and the Greek village where she lives part-time. While living in Freedom, from 1974 to 1988, she assisted in the operation of The Farmstead Press and contributed editorial materials to Farmstead magazine. She taught English and theater in both public schools (Belfast Area High School, Mount View High School, and TARGET, a gifted and talented program). Frangoulis hosts “Poetry By the Bay” on WBFY radio,  and “Arts By the Bay” on “Good Morning Belfast” on the Belfast Community  TV Station.

A co-production with Waterfall Arts, {elbow room} is a space for presenting original performance, storytelling & theatre experiments for mature audiences. For more information, visit waterfallarts.org/event.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Christine Dunkle can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 108; or arts@villagesoup.com.

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