This weekend in Milford: Tara Theater presents Wake in the West

Performers rehearse for Wake in the West, which will take the stage this weekend in downtown Milford. Tom Lacey
plays “the dead man,” Tom Healey. Patrice Dunn, left, plays Mary, and Patricia Fillion plays Dr. Jane.

The Tara Theater Company, an affiliate of the Irish Heritage Society of Milford, will present a Wake in the West — a play set in Ireland that takes the audience on a journey of Irish cultural aspects of laying a family member/friend to rest.

The play takes place at the Milford Arts Council in Milford on Friday, June 22 at 7 p.m.; Saturday, June 23 at 7 p.m.; and Sunday June 24 at 2:30 p.m.

The Healey family is laying their father to rest when they receive an unusual dying wish in his will from their family doctor. This of course causes family drama while they’re waking Tom Healey in his home in Ireland.

The dynamic characters of Wake in the West will take the audience “on a ride of belly-aching laughter,” show producers said, when one character stirs up mischief in the middle of the wake. Tara Theater company began in 2008 and presents productions immersed in Irish culture each year.

The cast is mainly comprised of Irish Heritage Society of Milford members. While these characters are fictional….one of the directors and actor, Patrick Cornelio, said, “We relate to these characters because no matter how long they’ve been apart or how different they are, everyone overcomes hardships together with a little love and a little laughter.”

A traditional Irish wake was usually held in the home of the deceased or a close loved one. A room is prepared for the departed and their remains are usually placed close to an open window, to let their spirit peacefully leave the house. Candles may be placed at the head and the foot of the deceased, and clocks stopped at the time of death. Mirrors are covered or turned to the wall and curtains are closed.

For tickets, $15, contact Maureen Richetelli at 203-874-6273. Friday’s show is sold out.

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