LANESBORO — Amanda Pyfferoen is ready to do her thing.
After nearly a year as an apprentice member of the Commonweal Theatrein Lanesboro, Pyfferoen is directing "Salt-Water Moon," which features other Commonweal apprentices in all acting and production roles.
It's time for the kids to show what they've got.
"There's pressure to show the company and the people in the community 'Yes, this is what we've learned all season,'" Pyfferoen said.
"For me, directing is my main focus," she said. "This is my chance to show people I work with that this is what I can do."
The Commonweal's apprentice program brings recent graduates and beginning theater professionals to Lanesboro for a season-long hands-on involvement with every aspect of running a playhouse, from selling tickets and ushering to gathering props and acting on stage.
"It's grueling," said Pyfferoen, a Rochester native who holds a master's degree in theater from Minnesota State-Mankato. "It's a long season, but I definitely was never bored. You're always learning."
After her apprentice experience, Pyfferoen hopes to find work in the theatrical world. "I'm currently in the world of applications," she said.
Before that, though, comes "Salt-Water Moon," with apprentice actors Megan Hanks and Patrick Vaughn as a former childhood sweethearts who find themselves reconnecting in post-World War I Newfoundland. Kelsey Heathcote, another apprentice, is stage manager for the play, which was written by Canadian playwright David French. The play opens March 9.
The play was actually selected by the apprentices. "I think we read close to 15 plays," Pyfferoen said. They whittled the list down to five, and then, in consultation with Hal Cropp, the Commonweal's artistic director, selected "Salt-Water Moon."
"I really love the fact that there is something in this story that will connect to everybody," Pyfferoen said.
One challenge for the actors is replicating the elusive Newfoundland dialect. "It has a strong Irish base to it, but with Canadian vowel sounds," Pyfferoen said.
To hear more than that, you'll have to see the play.
What: "Salt-Water Moon" When: March 9 through March 25; 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays,
1:30 p.m. Sundays Where: Commonweal Theatre, 208 Parkway Ave. N, Lanesboro Tickets: $20 adults, $15 students and Commonweal season pass
holders; 800-657-7025; commonwealtheatre.org
What: "Salt-Water Moon"
When: March 9 through March 25; 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 1:30 p.m. Sundays
Where: Commonweal Theatre, 208 Parkway Ave. N, Lanesboro
Tickets: $20 adults, $15 students and Commonweal season pass holders; 800-657-7025; commonwealtheatre.org