Review: “Mauritius” cast brings human frailties to life

By Betsie Freeman / World-Herald staff writer

“Mauritius” is glimpse at a passion most of us know little about.

It’s also a study of characters with human emotions and behaviors that are all too familiar: anger, disappointment, longing, deception and dishonesty, to name a few. And the play, ostensibly about stamp collecting, wouldn’t work without a cast capable of bringing its characters to life.

The Omaha Community Playhouse has such an ensemble. Director Jeff Horger and his five actors kept the audience hooked until the end of the two-plus-hour drama at a preview performance on Thursday night. Cliched as it sounds, some people spent part of the night on the edge of their seats.
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Playhouse season opener will resonate with stamp collectors

By Betsie Freeman / World-Herald staff writer

Stamp collecting is a hobby that sticks.

Take Joseph Rende. He began his collection when he was 8 years old, following the example of an aunt. He’s still amassing stamps at age 71, and works part time as the manager of the widely known Boys Town stamp center. He also organizes stamp shows.

And Lloyd Meyer. The retired architect started with some animal stamps when he was 10 years old. Nearly 60 years later, he has hundreds of thousands of stamps in albums at his west Omaha home. He especially prizes his “Penny Blacks,” issued by Britain in the 1850s, which are among the world’s earliest postage stamps.

The stories behind the stamps and the thrill of rare finds keep them hooked.
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