Rainmaker Review - Beautifully Written, Well Executed and Set in the 1950’s

During The Rainmaker, we come to realize that although this play takes place many years ago there are still many issues one can relate to in society today. This beautifully written and well executed play is set in the 1950’s.  I saw The Rainmaker on August 3rd at the magnificent outdoor First Folio Theatre located in Oak Brook, IL. where it is playing until Se[tember 1, 2013.  In this play, we get an inside look at the struggles individuals faced during the depression era.


The Rainmaker takes place during a scorching hot day in 1954. We see old fashioned tools, the bulky old radio and telephones, seldom used today. The aroma of eggs cooking right off the stove places you in the home of the Curry family for morning breakfast. From that point on,  one is drawn into the inner workings of this close family and the issues they face on a daily basis.



The Curry family consists of a hard working father and his three very unique children. From the very beginning, you can tell that H.C Curry (David Rice) is a loving and caring father to his sons and one daughter.  He does however shelter his daughter Lizzie from the cruelness of the world. H.C. wants the best for his daughter. Most fathers would tell their daughter not to date until the age of twenty-five. However, H.C. insists on Lizzie finding a husband and having children. He will go to extreme measures for his family that make you think twice about his decisions.


A slick con man by the name of Bill Starbuck (Joseph Wycoff) ends up making his way into the Curry home. He is able to convince most of them that he can help with their struggles for a $100.00 fee. Although his intentions are to trick and make the family look like a fool, he ends up cooling off Lizzie’s burning desire for affection. 

Lizzie and Starbuck

Hayley L. Rice plays a delightful Lizzie Curry. Lizzie is what you would call a “plain” girl with the desire to find the man of her dreams. H.C. arranged a “vacation” for Lizzie in order to meet a man. She continues to deny her quest for a love, but deep down is wishing for Prince Charming to sweep her off her feet.  At every turn, Lizzie finds disappointment until a smooth talking con man walks into her life and gives her the inner confidence that she needed.

Lizzie In Love

File (Aaron Christensen) is a bitter yet shy deputy who seems destined to live alone for eternity. Having been left by his wife six years ago, he has created a barricade around his emotions and refuses to let anyone get close to him. But File quickly realizes that if he does not act upon his true feelings, he will lose Lizzie’s heart forever.   

Two Men She Loves

Noah Curry (Matthew Keffer) is the older brother of the family, but insists on taking the roll of a father. He has a harsh way of approaching his sister that many may not agree with. Noah has good intentions of guiding Jimmy in the right direction but forgets that sometimes you have to learn things on your own. He, of course, does not give into the stories told by Starbuck but ends up doing the right thing to ensure Starbuck’s freedom.


Jimmy Curry (Alex Weisman) is a rambunctious character with a deep love for his family. Although very naive at times, he constantly turns to his big brother Noah for advice. He is very gullible and is in a complete trance as Starbuck, the charming con man describes the purpose of his visit. Jimmy buys into the stories Starbuck describes and makes sure he does whatever ridiculous action Starbuck may request him to do.


Director Allison C. Vesely and executive director David Rice did an exceptional job of choosing each cast member. The cast and story line combined made for a spectacular show that left me wanting more.  All the characters were perfectly relatable to someone in the audience at one point or another.

The Curry Family

The Rainmaker is now running through September 1st at the First Folio Theatre. Tickets range from $30-$37 and performances will be held on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturday, and Sundays at 8:15p.m. For more information please call 630-986-8067 or online at www.firstfolio.org.

Photos: Courtesy of The Rainmaker

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