Frank Smith stars in Mass Appeal at Square One Theatre

Milford actor, Frank Smith is featured in Mass Appeal, a two-character comedy-drama by Bill C. Davis, which opens Square One Theatre’s 26th Season at its new location on the stage of Stratford Academy at 719 Birdseye Street in Stratford. Performances are Thursdays through Sundays beginning Nov. 5 and continuing through Nov. 22.

Mass Appeal focuses on the conflict between a complacent older Roman Catholic priest, Father Tim Farley, played by Frank Smith, and an idealistic young seminarian, Mark Dolson, played by Pelham, New York’s Darius James Copland.

Smith’s Square One Theatre credits include Indian Blood, Rutherford & Son, The Best Man, Educating Rita, The Rainmaker, The Shop at Sly Corner, Changing Lives, Mastergate, Time of My Life, Jake’s Women, The Good Doctor and Stratford Characters. Other area stage credits include It’s A Wonderful Life (Stamford Center for the Arts), Aristocrats, Oleanna (Westport Community Theatre) and The Dining Room, The Fourposter (Eastbound).

Smith is the recipient of such Square One Theatre Subscriber Awards as Outstanding Actor (Educating Rita) and Outstanding Featured Actor (Time of My Life, The Shop at Sly Corner, The Rainmaker).

Father Farley is described as a prosperous, Mercedes-driving American priest much beloved by his flock for his ''tact'' and good humor. A master at delivering entertaining (but certainly unchallenging) sermons, Farley is also an agile parish politician who preserves his popularity by following the ''Nielsen ratings'' of the collection plate.”

On the other hand, Mark Dolson is “a child of the 60s who is utterly contemptuous of Father Farley's ''song-and-dance theology.'' The young seminarian wants to be a priest precisely because he does believe that ''serious social and moral issues can be attended to from the pulpit.''

At its new location, Square One Theatre has re-configured Stratford Academy's expansive stage into an intimate 64-seat black box-type theatre. The audience will actually be seated (in new padded chairs) on the stage along with the actors, insuring that all patrons have a good seat to hear and see. theater officials said. With this redesigned, modern venue no audience member will be more than 15 feet from the stage

Mass Appeal is staged by Tom Holehan, Square One Theatre Artistic Director.

Performances of Mass Appeal are:

Thursday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 6 at 8 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 7 at 4 p.m. (twilight matinee) and 8 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 8 at 2 p.m. (matinee)

Thursday, Nov. 12, at 7 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 13 at 8 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 14 at 4 p.m. (twilight matinee) and 8 p.m.; and Sunday, Nov. 15 at 2 p.m.

Thursday, Nov. 19 at 7 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 20 at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 21 at 4 p.m. (twilight matinee) and 8 p.m.; Sunday, Nov. 22 at 2 p.m. (final performance).

Backstage are Stratford’s Kimberly Krol (stage manager), Don Henault (sound), Shelton’s Greg Fairbend and Stratford’s Robert Mastroni (scenery), Milford’s Cliff Fava (lights), Gaetana Grinder and Kerry Lambert (costumes).

All performances take place on the stage of Stratford Academy/Johnson House. The GPS setting is Square One Theatre at 719 Birdseye Street in Stratford, Connecticut, located off I-95 Exit 32 (northbound and southbound).

Tickets are: $20 for adult single tickets, $19 for senior citizens and students.

Single tickets may be purchased: By phone: Box Office at 203-375-8778 (24/7), online at:, in person at box office 60 minutes prior to each performance, and by mail, self-addressed, stamped envelope and check payable to Square One Theatre sent to Administrative Office; 656 Longbrook Avenue, Stratford, Ct 06614-5117.

The Stratford Academy is wheelchair accessible and the theatre offers its patrons hearing-assisted listening devices as needed.

For more information and up-to-date news about suggested parking, the theatre, the plays, the actors and seating chart visit