Thursday, April 22, 2010

Long Wharf Announces New Season Offerings

Long Wharf Theatre, under the leadership of Artistic Director Gordon Edelstein and Managing Director Ray Cullom, announces four plays of its 2010-2011 season – a celebration of one of history’s greatest jazz singers, a one-woman tour-de-force comedy, an exciting verbal duel and the newest from Athol Fugard.

The 2010-11 season will begin with the hit musical Ella, a celebration of the life and music of famed singer Ella Fitzgerald, playing on the Mainstage. A stylish and sophisticated theatrical event, Tina Fabrique plays the title role, tackling some of the most famous songs in the singer’s canon.

Judith Ivey will perform on Stage II in Willy Russell’s Shirley Valentine, a delightful comedy about a woman’s quest for joy in her own life. “Judy is a brilliant comic actress. She’ll bring warmth, depth, humanity and charm to this role. It will be a joyous, inspirational evening,” Edelstein said.

The Old Masters is one of the final works of British playwright Simon Gray, whose play Quartermaine’s Terms, was a hit at Long Wharf Theatre in the 1980s, and went on to success in New York City. The Old Masters, scheduled for its North American premiere on the Mainstage, vividly brings to life the . “Simon Gray has a long history with Long Wharf. This play is an exciting verbal duel between two old friends over the value of art versus money,” Edelstein said.

Athol Fugard continues his trenchant exploration of human relationships with the U.S. premiere of The Train Driver. Based on a real life incident, the play explores guilt in post-apartheid South Africa, continuing the theatre’s long and fruitful association with the master playwright. “The Train Driver the culmination of Athol’s career to this point and he describes it as such. The play is an example of the central challenge, from Athol’s point of view, of race in South Africa,” Edelstein said.

Final planning is underway for the final two selections of the season, one of which will be a world premiere by an innovative American playwright and the other a work by esteemed writer.

For more information about purchasing subscriptions, call 203-787-4282, or visit the Long Wharf Theatre box office at 222 Sargent Drive, New Haven, CT.

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Lauren Yarger with playwright Alfred Uhry at the Mark Twain House. Photo: Jacques Lamarre)

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