M.T. Pockets play tackles ADD treatment

MORGANTOWN — “Distracted” by playwright Lisa Loomer is a comedy that begs the question, “Would Ritalin be a better mother than I am?” The play debuts at 8 p.m. Friday at M.T. Pockets Theatre Co., at 203 Parsons St. The production continues its run at 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23-25 and 2 p.m. Sunday.

Something is wrong with nine-year-old Jesse. His dad says he’s just a boy, his teacher says it’s attention deficit disorder, and his mom is on a quest for answers.

This satiric journey takes the audience through several doctor appointments and treatment methods with a look at the challenges of modern family life. The actors and the audience members are meant to grapple with the question: Are we so tuned in to our 24/7 information-rich world that we’ve tuned out what really matters?

Nicole Davis, director of the M.T. Pockets Theatre production of “Distracted,” was scheduled to direct this play for a Wyoming theater company in 2013, but life had a way of changing her plans.

“My grandma always said, ‘Everything happens for a reason,’ and she’s usually right,” Davis said. “I was meant to direct this particular cast. They are each superb in their own way, and the cumulative effect of their characters on stage is precisely what theatre is about for me.”

“This show examines an issue that is prevalent in our current culture and difficult to discuss and manages to look at the subject matter through a variety of lenses — all the while reminding us that we are just making the best decisions we can for the well-being of our families with the information that is available to us,” Davis added.

Tawnya Drake, who most recently directed the M.T. Pockets production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play, “How I Learned to Drive,” plays Mama.

“This show is important to me because every piece relates to my own life,” Drake said. “Several scenes and specific lines tear me up inside, but at the same time, it’s comforting. We’re discussing very real, very important topics. Being a part of this show has helped me see that I am not alone with these struggles. Also, the play is incredibly hilarious, so that keeps the momentum going.”

Tickets range $15 for adults, $13 for seniors/military and $10 for students. They are available at mtpocketstheatre.com. Tickets can also be purchased at the door, when seating is available. Advance ticket purchases are strongly recommended. Reservations can be made by calling 304-284-0049 and leaving a message.

Free parking is available in the lower lot off Charles Avenue. The play is for mature audiences.

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