Lexy Neale (left) and Esack Grueskin (right) in 'The Last Five Years'. Photo by Amy Picard.

Rising Novelist Meets Struggling Actress

A five-year relationship is explored in this classic musical

Emotional, powerful and intimate describes The Last Five Years, a 2001 musical created by Jason Robert Brown. It was adapted into a comedic musical film starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan in 2014. Pegasus Playhouse is staging an upcoming production of The Last Five Years June 14 to 30 under the direction of Scott Frazier-Maskiell, who also founded Pegasus Playhouse. Watch as a tragic love story unfolds over the past five years. Cathy (Lexy Neale), an actress, strives to save her marriage, but her writer husband, Jamie (Esack Francis Grueskin), wants to end their relationship. The unconventional structure of the production consists of Cathy’s story told backward from the break up to when they meet, and Jamie’s story told in the opposite order. These lovers face different challenges as one falls in love with someone else and career dedication creates a divide in the relationship. A quartet of four musicians will accompany the characters through each of the songs. The chemistry on stage bleeds out into reality as Neale and Grueskin got engaged in real life. “Expect humor, drama, sadness, joy. The full joy of musical theater,” Frazier-Maskiell says of the musical. “There’s every kind of song from a comic song to a tragic song. And two amazing performers. I will say that they are fantastic actors.”

The Last Five Years runs June 14 to 30 and is 7 pm Fridays and Saturdays and 3 pm Sundays at Pegasus Playhouse, 402 Main Street in Springfield. Tickets are $15 for K-12 students and $20 for adults at PegasusPlayhouse.com