Arts at Bucks Presents the 1920s Drama ‘These Shining Lives’

The curtain rises at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday on the Newtown campus.

As the celebration of Arts at Bucks continues, Bucks County Community College presents “These Shining Lives” by Melanie Marnich Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, April 25, 26, and 27.

The play, directed by Associate Professor Shelli Pentimall-Bookler,chronicles the strength and determination of women considered expendable in their day.  In 1920s Chicago, Catherine and her friends are dying, but they refuse to allow the company that stole their health to kill their spirits – or endanger the lives of those who come after them.

The women work at Radium Dial Corporation painting numbers on watches and clocks. The paint is made with radium, so with every stroke, they are poisoning themselves. Once they become sick, they are fired from the company. Catherine decides to sue the company in the end and wins, but she cannot undo the physical damages to her body.

“I chose this play because it sends a message of strength,” said Pentimall-Bookler. “Too many people are witnesses to or victims of injustice and do not let their voices be heard. We cannot allow others to take advantage of us; we are worth more than that. As

Eleanor Roosevelt wrote, ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.’”

“These Shining Lives” features Alexis Eustace-Rickabaugh as Catherine, Caitlin Cummiskey as Charlotte, Joshua Smith as Tom, and Julia Peoples as Pearl. Ensemble players include Adriana Morales and Karl Schoeler.  A promotional video can be viewed here.

The curtain rises at 8 p.m. each evening in the Gateway Auditorium on the campus, located at 275 Swamp Rd., Newtown, Pa.  Tickets, available at the door, are $7 for students, faculty, and staff, and $10 for general admission.

“These Shining Lives” is part of the month-long Arts at Bucks festival, which festival showcases the talent and academic excellence available at the public, two-year school.

For a complete listing of events, visit or call the Department of the Arts at 215-968-8425.

Jean Dolan
Assistant Director, Public Relations