Mt Vernon/Lisbon Community Theatre: “These Shining Lives”

First Street Community Center Uptown Theatre Audience

Mt Vernon/Lisbon Community Theatre: “These Shining Lives”

The Mount Vernon/Lisbon Community Theatre presents “These Shining Lives.”

“This isn’t a fairy tale, though it starts like one.  It’s not a tragedy, though it ends like one.”

Catherine Donohue’s opening line to the audience in These Shining Lives sets the tone for a play that is hard to categorize.  Based on the true story of real people in a particular time and place, it shows us the lives of the “radium girls” who painted dials with glowing radium-infused paint to create watches that could be read in the dark.  Catherine Donohue and her coworkers at Radium Dial in Ottawa, Illinois, were among the many women who worked in conditions that exposed them to a radioactive chemical that made them ill. Their fight for workers’ compensation even as they were suffering the crippling effects of the radium inspired a nation of workers to demand safe conditions from their employers.  Their efforts are described in historic accounts as heroic, but they saw themselves as ordinary people. As Catherine says: “But we’re just girls who wanted to work.”

With its simple set, small cast and Melanie Marnich’s poetic script, this story is one you will remember.  The show runs a little over an hour with no intermission; talkbacks will be held after the Saturday and Sunday shows for those who wish to stay. 

Performance Schedule:

  • March 6: 7:30 p.m.
  • March 7: 7:30 p.m.
  • March 8: 2:00 p.m.
  • March 13: 7:30 p.m.
  • March 14: 7:30 p.m.


  • Tickets are available online and at the door.   
  • Adults = $15
  • Seniors = $14
  • Students = $12

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Mar 06 2020


7:30 pm - 7:30 pm




First Street Community Center - Mount Vernon, Iowa
221 First Street NY


Mount Vernon Lisbon Community Theatre
[email protected]