by John Cariani
Louis Lotorto, Caroline Kinsolving, and Dee Ann Newkirk
Episode 1: Her
Episode 2: Sad
Episode 3: This Hurts
Episode 4: Getting
Pete ..... Louis
Episode 5: They Fell
Episode 6: Where it Went
Episode 7: Story of Hope
Episode 8: Seeing the Thing
Pete ..... Louis
Various locales in Almost, Maine, a small town in Northern Maine that doesn’t quite exist.
present. Everything takes place at nine o’clock on a cold, clear,
moonless, slightly surreal Friday night in the middle of the deepest
part of a Northern Maine winter.
Notes from the Playwright
Things you should know about Maine and Almost, Maine:
Maine, the eastern-most and northeastern-most state in the United States, is the largest state in New England. It comprises almost half of New England’s total land area, but has only 9% of the region’s population -
1.3 million people. The most sparsely populated state east of the Mississippi River, Maine has only 40 people per square mile. (Consider this: Vermont has 65 people per square mile; California has 234.) However, Mainers don't despair: Maine has more moose per square mile than any other state. This shouldn't be too surprising when you consider that Maine is the most forested state in the country: It is 90% woods!
Were it to exist, Almost, Maine would be located in the remote heart
of Aroostook (say, “uh-ROO-stick”) County, the northernmost county in
Maine. Aroostook is the largest county east of the Mississippi River:
It is almost as big as the state of Massachusetts and is considerably
larger than Connecticut and Rhode Island put together. With a
population of about 72,000, and only 11 people per square mile,
Aroostook has the same population density as the Dakotas.
Winters in Almost, Maine are long and cold: It feels like winter from October to May. Average temperature in January is 9 degrees Fahrenheit. (On January 22 of this year, it was -34!) Average July temperature:
65. Average annual snowfall is 110 inches. (It seems quite
appropriate, then, that one of Maine's two U.S. Senators is Olympia
Snowe. Senator Snowe. For real!)
National Geographic once printed something to this effect: “They call Montana ‘Big Sky Country.’ Well ... ‘they’ haven’t seen Northern Maine.” Northern Maine’s big,
open sky and wide open spaces make for prime viewing of the northern
lights (aurora borealis) -- the brilliant, ribbon-like, otherworldly
displays of light that are most common in the Arctic. Northern Mainers
are fortunate: They live just inside the southernmost tip of a ring
defining the area in which the northern lights regularly appear.
Growing up, I remember being treated to a northern lights show at least
once a year.