Singles in Agriculture

Singles in Agriculture, virtually at Bristol Riverside Theatre

Real-life couple, actors Jennifer Byrne and Timothy C. Goodwin star in the Bristol Riverside Theatre’s production of author and playwright Abby Rosebrock’s Singles in Agriculture.

By now, the pandemic-forced live-streamed, filmed and virtual event is a thing. What sort of a thing it is, is up to you, and the makers of the thing. Do we depend on technical flash for its level of enjoyment, or do we hope-upon-hope that it is the up-close-and-personal human element that carries the day and crafts something, optimally, into an event as intimate as a live production itself? The Philadelphia area’s Bristol Riverside Theatre is pushing the boundaries of the latter by pursuing a real-life couple. Actors Jennifer Byrne and Timothy C. Goodwin. Quarantined in their own home. In order to create the two-hander dramedy, Singles in Agriculture by author and playwright Abby Rosebrock.

Making its Philadelphia premiere at Bristol Riverside Theatre, and directed by the Bristol, PA’s theater’s artistic director, Amy Kaissar, Singles in Architecture runs from Tuesday, January 26 at 7:30 p.m. The play runs until January 30. Tickets can be accessed here: tickets@brtstage.org, and here, 215-785-0100.

Singles in Agriculture

Talking to the couple from their home, both actors joked about having to kit out their home with lights, mics and props. “Like cows and sheep,” teases Byrne. The props allow them to portray two lonely farm runners, looking for love at the annual convention for singles in the agricultural field. One a young army widow raising Pygmy goats. The other a religious dairy farmer from Oklahoma. 

Singles in Agriculture

“We just happened to be hiking, taking a break from everything, when we got a call from Amy (Kaissar) telling us we’d be perfect for her upcoming play about singles,” jokes Goodwin. “Since we’ve spent the entirety of the lockdown together under one roof, giving each other space in the house, a show like this was a nice opportunity to bring us together again.”

Considering that the always hilarious, and provocative playwright went the extra mile to research the true-to-life, farmers-only dating/mating service, expect Singles in Architecture to study the genuine isolation and anxiety of rural farm-centric America. Perhaps intensified by the current financial climate. Plus, if my Zoom chat with them was any indication, the Byrne/Goodwin family dog, Awesome, will more than likely make an appearance.

Images: Timothy Goodwin

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