Front Row Center – May 2019

Front Row Center

By Michael Warren

Season 55 – 2019/2020


front rowNext season opens later than usual on November 8, in order to allow for possible overruns on the ambitious renovations planned for this summer. As a result there will be five shows instead of the normal six. The first play will be Lunenburg by the prolific Canadian playwright Norm Foster. American widow Iris Oulette has inherited a beach house in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, and discovers that her recently deceased husband had a secret life. Foster is a master of humorous dialogue, and the repartee is as always clever and entertaining. First-time directors Susan Quiriconi and Johan Dirkes are masterminding this sentimental comedy/drama.

Opening on December 6, we’ll get to see a couple of hilarious one-act plays The Real Inspector Hound and After Magritte by Tom Stoppard. The first play is a crazy parody of the typical whodunit murder mystery, set in a British country house Muldoon Manor. It also takes a dig at the pomposity of theater critics, as Moon and Birdboot arrive to critique a performance and somehow get involved in the action.

The second play features an eccentric family who are placed under arrest for illegal parking, and other strange offences. Confusion and misunderstandings abound – if you enjoy absurd British farces, you will have a great time watching these two plays.

Opening on January 17, we have 20th Century Blues by Susan Miller. Ms Miller is a two-time Off Broadway award winner and also a recipient of a Guggenheim Playwriting Fellowship. This recent play focuses on four women who originally met in lock-up in the 60’s. They get together every year for a reunion and a photograph. Now they are in their sixties and the Museum of Modern Art wants to show the photographs as a retrospective exhibition. This play may cause you to reflect on your own journey through life.

Then the musical, planned to open on February 21, will be My Fair Lady, assuming that LLT is able to acquire rights approval. Well, you all know the story and the memorable Lerner and Leowe tunes. This classic show opened on Broadway in 1956 with Rex Harrison as Henry Higgins and Julie Andrews as Eliza Doolittle. It was followed by a hit London production, a popular film version, and many revivals. Enjoy!

The final play of the season is The Actress by Peter Quilter, opening on March 27. This romantic comedy dramatizes the events backstage as a colorful actress gives her emotional farewell performance. Various people invade her dressing room to say their good-byes, declare their love, roar with laughter, spit insults, grab a final embrace or renew old battles.

So there you have it – a shortened Season 55 in the new auditorium will include three semi-serious comedies, a crazy British evening of parody and farce, and a much-loved musical. Get your season tickets now!

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