Project brings mothers to the fore

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The Athena Project is taking the theater experience to a whole new level, giving mothers, fathers and families a chance to be pampered before the show starts.

The project will be presenting “The Mommy Rants” by local playwrights Connie Ferger and Christie Winn in the Rotunda Building at the Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design, 1600 Pierce St., on Saturday, Nov. 9 and 16 and Sunday, Nov. 10.

Showtimes will be — Saturday at 1, 4 and 7 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m., 1 and 4 p.m.

“It’s really the ultimate day out for mothers,” Ferger said. “As mothers we tried to think about things that mothers would love to do, and so we included all of that in the pre-show.”

Visitors are encouraged to arrive for the show 45 minutes before it starts, and take advantage of free massages, baked goods and high-end coffee and drinks. There will also be artists — including some students from RMCAD — selling their works.

To really give mothers everything they could want, there will also be several child-care options available.

“We really wanted to set this all up around a mother’s schedule,” Ferger said. “That’s why we have the kind of unusual show times, which we think offers better options for women.”

The story of “The Mommy Rants” is a comedy and centers around a baby shower thrown for soon-to-be mother Samantha, by her cousin Ann. In attendance are a variety of different mothers, and mothers-to-be, as well as a stay at home father and Samantha’s sister Becky, who doesn’t want to have kids.

“We wrote all sorts of characters in these different stages, who are pushed together by the fact that Samantha is late to her own shower,” Winn said. “They have dialogue with each other, and inner dialogues, that really drive the tensions.”

Ferger and Winn met at a screenwriting program, when Winn ended up performing a monologue that Ferger wrote. Winn said she saw a play in the monologue, and added a few characters, then Ferger added a few more, and the process expanded from there.

Both their husbands also chimed in during the writing process, which went from 2008 to 2010 when the play was produced for the first time at the Theatre O in Boulder.

This is the second time the show is being produced, and Ferger and Winn said it has been updated, and new humor has been added.

While the show certainly focuses on mothers and women, both fathers and men will find things to enjoy in the play.

“Everybody is welcome to the show,” Winn said. “We’ve had all ages and both men and women come to the show and enjoy it. It’s really, really funny, and everyone will have a laugh.”

The Athen Project was founded by Angela Astle — who is directing “The Mommy Rants” — as a way to promote women and girls in the arts, and works with girls in grades six through nine on playwriting and puts on a major festival in March, celebrating women’s contributions to the local art world. For more information, visit www.athenaprojectfestival.org.

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