‘Tiny Beautiful Things’ play to run Aug. 20-22 at CAMP Rehoboth

July 14, 2021

CAMP Rehoboth will present “Tiny Beautiful Things,” from Friday to Sunday, Aug. 20 to 22.

Adapted for the stage by Nia Vardalos, “Tiny Beautiful Things” is based on a book by Cheryl Strayed, who shares real-life letters written to her alter ego, advice columnist Sugar, and the shockingly vulnerable, empathetic ways in which she responds.

Directed by Russell Stiles, the play opens as the writer agrees to take on the role of Sugar, portrayed by Gwen Osborne. The benefits are no pay or byline – just sincere communication between her and the people at the end of the notes in her inbox. The letters rush in, the notification chime dinging incessantly from her laptop, and Sugar begins to read.

The stories are voiced by three actors, Matty Brown, Diana Counts and Rick Welk, who are positioned around the room and flawlessly assume the identity of various letter writers, regardless of age or gender. Some writers wonder what is love and what’s it all about? Others ask whether to share their stories of sexual assault.

The play culminates in a letter from Living Dead Dad, whose 22-year-old son was killed by a drunk driver. Sugar doesn’t respond in the ways we might expect. Rather than looking down on her advice-seekers from a throne of sagacity, she reaches into herself and shares intensely personal stories – the ones layered in pain and heartbreak – and reminds her audience that people aren’t alone in how they feel, and they never have been. 

Performances are at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m., Sunday. All performances are at the Elkins/Archibald Atrium, CAMP Rehoboth, 37 Baltimore Ave., Rehoboth Beach. 

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