Men On Boats: The True-ish History Of Charting The Colorado River
Published: May 23rd, 2022

GREENE — From June 3 to 26, Chenango River Theatre will present the area premiere of Men On Boats, a raucous and lively new play by Jaclyn Backhaus.

Men on Boats is the true(ish) history of an 1869 expedition where a one-armed captain and an insane yet loyal crew set out to chart the course of the Colorado river. Inspired by John Wesley Powell’s actual travel logs, Backhaus’ nimble and ingenious script is provocative, laugh-out loud theatre, performed by a diverse female-only cast who infuse America’s historic myths of male conquest with a sly blast of satire.

“…marvelously destabilizing both as history and theater. The stalwartness and selfishness of the adventurers—their cockiness and cluelessness—become biting satire when sent up by women.” —NY Magazine

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Leading the stalwart ensemble of actors as John Wesley Powell is Adara Alston, who most recently appeared in Fences at Redhouse Arts in Syracuse, and has been seen in numerous shows around the Southern Tier.

CRT regulars Heidi Weeks and Dori May Ganisin, who have over two dozen CRT credits between them, play William Dunn and Old Shady. Lisa Naso returns to CRT to play John Colton Sumner, after their appearance in 2019’s smash hit Incident at Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

The rest of the ensemble is rounded out by new faces to the CRT stage. From NYC: Shelina Atambona (O.G. Howland), Isi Laborde (Seneca Howland), Eden Ohayon (Hall); From Springfield, IL: Missy Thibodeaux-Thompson (Hawkins); and local actors Natalie DeBoer (Bradley) and Gillian Canavan (Frank Goodman).

“…off-the-canyon-walls funny…” —Variety.

Directing the highly physical production is Kiara Pipino, who returns after staging A Doll’s House, Part 2 for CRT in 2019. Pipino is Assistant Professor of Acting, Directing and Movement at SUNY Oneonta. She has received the Kennedy Center Meritorious Award for directing three years in a row, and is the author of both the acting textbook Conquering the Stage, and of a research book on the classics, Theatre and Pietas.

Men On Boats is Co-Produced by Edward Jones Investments.

Running from June 3 to 26, tickets are $27 for all performances. The recommended way to buy tickets is at Tickets can also be purchased by calling the 24-hour box office line, 607-656-8499. Performances are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.

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Free tickets for high school and college students are available at all evening performances. Email tickets@chenangorivertheatre for reservations, which are required for the free ticket program.

Chenango River Theatre’s intimate, air-conditioned, 99-seat theatre is just 15 minutes north of Binghamton at 991 State Highway 12 in Greene. CRT operates under an annual contract with Actors’ Equity Association, the national association for professional actors and stage managers in the United States.

CRT’s 2022 season is made possible in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature.

-Information provided by the Chenango River Theatre