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River Stage’s “The Little Mermaid is Not for Children” plays this weekend

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 River Stage will finish its 2010 season with the annual playwright’s festival, and this year’s presentation of “The Little Mermaid is Not for Children” promises to be bubbly.

The playwright’s festival is a River Stage ritual, and was the program that started the theater off in 1994.

This year’s play is from the mind of Alina Trowbridge, 55, chair of the Playwright’s Center of San Francisco. The plot centers on a family of three sisters who deal with their mother’s death.

“It is all about healing from grief, facing reality and cutting ourselves off from the best of ourselves,” Trowbridge said. “It’s about people silencing themselves, and I think in a lot of ways we all do that.”

Director Frank Condon decided on this as the last play of his career as River Stage’s artistic director.

“It’s an extraordinary piece of theater,” Condon said.

After the show, audience members are encouraged to voice their criticism and opinions.

“The exciting thing about the playwright’s festival is that the audience gets involved with the feedback,” Condon said. “Much of that feedback is incorporated into the writing of the play.”

A staged reading of the play will be held July 30 and 31 at River Stage. For more information, visit here.

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