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3/4 in. archival original is transfer from original 2 in. tape. // Dropout throughout. // Episode produced in 1981 by Maine Public Broadcasting for a series entitled Reflets et Lumiere II, which explores the evolution of French Americans in Maine. Introduced by two men, the episode features a short comedy play in French and English written by Gregoire Chabot that examines culture shock, breakdown, and conflicting customs for the French Americans. Two couples play immigrants stranded in an automobile that they can not operate, and can not understand the instructions they are given by passers-by in English. Later, their descendants are stuck with a horse-drawn wagon that can not move. In the back they discover boxes containing 'Notre Heritage,' and must decide which items can be discarded so that the wagon will be light enough to move. Shot on location, has no subtitles. Episode concludes with a short dialogue between two French-speaking puppets: one is a log, the other is a potato.
For nearly forty years Joseph Jovite "J.J." Salvas was actively engaged in the staging and direction of amateur theatrical productions for French-speaking audiences. His companies were made up largely of Biddeford people, and they played to enthusiastic audiences locally and throughout New England. Felix Coulombe (his cousin, Conrad, as well as Mr. and Mrs. John B. Joncas), were amongst the many active members of this vibrant local theater community. The materials donated by Salvas and Coulombe make up the basis of this collection, which tells the story of Biddeford's incredibly rich theatrical tradition. The photographs, posters and programs in the collection reveal some of the players and the well-known plays they appeared in. They form an interesting part of Biddeford's social history, and showcase the talents of numerous local women and men who spent their non-working hours actively engaged in Biddeford's cultural life.