Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT) opens its 2017-18 season with Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. Jean Randich will direct. Performances will be held in the Harriet S. Jorgenson Theatre from October 5th through October 15th. For tickets and information, please visit crt.uconn.edu or call (860) 486-2113.
About The Importance of Being Earnest
In The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde blends the absurdities of farce with the sharp critique of social satire, creating one of the most highly regarded comedies of all time. The play follows the double lives of Jack Worthing and Algernon Moncrieff, men who invent circumstances that give them excuses to escape the strictures of family, duty, and social responsibility. But once you begin lying, how do you know when to stop? As each man’s romantic interest becomes entangled in the web of fantasies and deceits, Wilde’s characters find themselves in a dizzying world in which “the truth is rarely pure and never simple.”
Liz McCartney makes her CRT debut as Lady Bracknell. McCartney’s Broadway credits include Sunday in the Park with George and The Phantom of the Opera. She has also toured with The Rocky Horror Show. Her regional credits include Into the Woods as the Witch with Ordway and the Sacramento Music Theatre, Paint Your Wagon at Goodspeed, A Vision with Playwrights Horizons and A.C.T. Her TV credits include “Route 66,” “The Prosecutors,” “Law & Order: SVU.”
Connecticut-native Stephon Pettway stars as Algernon. Pettway was most recently seen touring A Midsummer Nights Dream and Julius Caesar in Rep with the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and Lifetime TV’s “My Crazy Ex.” Pettway’s Off-Broadway credits include Big Night, You Can’t Take It With You, and The Odd Couple. His Regional Theatre experience includes To Kill a Mockingbird with the Judy Bayley Theatre, A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Richmond Shakespeare Festival, The Merchant of Venice with STNJ, and Eurydice with the Judy Bayley Theatre.
Director Jean Randich is making her CRT directorial debut. Randich is a professor of drama at Bennington College and faculty member at NYU Tisch. She has directed new and classic work for En Garde Arts, New Georges, NAATCO, the Flea, the Asia society, and the Pearl Theartre in NYC, as well as at the Yale Repertory Theatre, Nevada Conservatory Theater, Portland Stage Company, and the Magic theatre. She is a cofounder of Collider Theatre in NYC.
Director Jean Randich says, “What is it about this play that feels so modern, so of our time? As an Irishman, an outsider, and as a man who loved men, Wilde was acutely aware of the exclusionary rituals of the late Victorian British upper class. He captures these rituals in minute detail and lampoons them at the same time. Marriages, funerals, christenings, all rites that give our lives meaning. And it’s interesting to note how these traditions and for some, coping mechanisms can vary from person to person. In the case of funerals, in certain countries it is a solemn tradition. In others, it is a celebration. For some it is tradition to mark the gravestone with a cemetery headstone engraving. In some cases the name is enough, but it is also common to engrave a memory of the person’s achievements or loved ones. How each group of people cope with the grief is a truly unique experience worth sharing.
Cast and Creative Team
The creative team includes: Jean Randich (Director), Pedro L. Guevara (Scenic Design), Danielle Verkennes (Lighting Design), Taowen Pan (Costume Design), Teddy Carraro (Sound Design), Gabriella Medvick (Dramaturg), and Tom Kosis (Production Stage Manager).
The cast includes BFA actors: Nick Nudler as Jack Worthing, Tabatha Gayle as Gwendolen Fairfax, Gillian Pardi as Cecily Cardew, Jacob Harris Wright as Rev. C Chausuble, Vivienne James as Miss Prismole, Coleman Churchill as Lane, and Anthony Giovino as Merriman.
Performance and Ticket Information
Evening performances start at 7:30pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and at 8pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Select matinee performances start at 2pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Single tickets are available now. Single tickets range from $10 to $33. All student tickets are $10.
On Wednesday, October 11, patrons can purchase tickets to Dine with Design, a pre-show dinner with members of the creative team for a behind-the-scenes experience. Dinner includes entrees and dessert.
Post-show discussions with members of the cast and crew will follow the performance on Thursday, October 12 at 7:30pm and the matinee Saturday, October 14 at 2pm.
Children must be at least 4 years old to attend CRT productions. CRT recommends ages 10 and up for this production. For additional ticket information or to charge tickets by phone, call 860.486.2113. All sales are final; no refunds. Play selections and performance dates are subject to change.
Please call the box office at 860.486.2113 for tickets and additional information or visit crt.uconn.edu for specific show dates and times because performance schedules vary and are subject to change.
The Harriet S. Jorgenson Theatre is located on the campus of the University of Connecticut in Storrs, CT.