Program Details

Dramawise: The People Downstairs

Gary Cadwallader
Drama / History
Video Catch-up

Course Description

Anne Frank's diaries give a detailed, daily account of her family's life in their cramped attic, but how did they survive for two years? In an imaginative new play by Michael McKeever, The People Downstairs explores the lives of those colleagues who kept the Frank and Van Pels families alive. In this interactive discussion about the Palm Beach Dramaworks world premiere production, PBD's Gary Cadwallader examines the characters, their relationships, the major themes of the play, and today's sociological relevance. Interesting multimedia clips supporting the discussion will be used to enhance the understanding of the production. Participants receive a copy of the play beforehand, and a comprehensive, informative PBD Dramaguide written specifically for this discussion. After an in-depth conversation of courage, fortitude, and selflessness, participants leave with a deeper understanding of the play and the historical characters.

About the Instructor

  • Founded in 2000, Palm Beach Dramaworks is a professional theatre company with a mission to engage and entertain audiences with provocative and timeless productions that personally impact each individual. They are dedicated “to enhance the quality of life through the transformative power of live theatre.” Consistent artistic excellence throughout their history places Palm Beach Dramaworks at the forefront of the artistic landscape of Palm Beach County.

    Gary Cadwallader, MFA, is the director of education and community engagement at Palm Beach Dramaworks. As a professional actor, director, and educator, Cadwallader is committed to providing strong, vibrant arts and arts integration opportunities for educators and students to nurture creativity, inspire potential, build confidence, and encourage self-expression. Cadwallader was most recently seen onstage at PBD as Captain Brice in "Arcadia" and John Adams in "1776" (Carbonell nomination.) He maintains a career as an actor and director and has performed across the country at theatres such as Wisdom Bridge Theatre in Chicago, ZACH Theatre in Austin, Great Lakes Theater in Cleveland, and on the national tour of "Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story." On camera, roles include "A League of Their Own", "The New Untouchables", and "Forensics" (pilot). He has an MFA from Western Illinois University and is currently the president of the Florida Theatre Conference. He is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA).

Upcoming programs presented by Gary Cadwallader.

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