Georgia Shakespeare presents its first-ever play by the great Oscar Wilde with the truly fun farce The Importance of Being Earnest, July 5 – August 3 at the Conant Performing Arts Center on the campus of Oglethorpe University. Full of razor-sharp wit, innuendo, and the rapid-fire dialogue for which Wilde is loved, this satirical comedy directed by Sabin Epstein takes a side-splitting stab at the Victorian era. Opening Night is Friday, July 6, 2012 at 8 p.m. Tickets are available by calling 404-504-1473 or online at www.gashakespeare.org.
The turn of the century brought some of the most treasured and clever tales in literature, and this play is no exception. In The Importance of Being Earnest, two young friends, Jack and Algernon, both masquerade as a libertine named Ernest in order to win the hearts of their unsuspecting loves, Gwendolyn and Cecily. When Jack and Algernon are caught in the act, chaos and hilarity erupt – and a very true Ernest is revealed – in this comedic masterpiece by one of the world’s greatest playwrights.
The cast features Georgia Shakespeare Associate Artists Joe Knezevich as Jack and Courtney Patterson as his conquest Gwendolyn. Caleb Clark plays Algernon Moncrieff in his debut season with Georgia Shakespeare, and Ann Marie Gideon appears as Cecily Cardew.
The audience can expect lots of surprises in this production, including a gender-bending portrayal of Lady Bracknell by Mark Cabus and Megan McFarland in the role of the butler Lane. Things are also not what they seem in the scenic design by Angela Balogh Calin, which features walls with hidden doors that drive the show’s fast-paced energy.
Subtitled “A Trivial Comedy for Serious People,” this show is a must see for those who love a little lampooning, and the play’s comedic turns and unforgettable characters make it one of Wilde’s most enduring classics.
Prior to the start of the show, Georgia Shakespeare welcomes audience members to the outdoor terrace and picnic grounds for drinks and dinner. Patrons can bring their meal and a bottle of wine to enjoy time with friends and family before heading into the theatre.
Patrons can also stay after the performance on July 13 for the Girls (and Boys) Gone Oscar Wilde Cabaret, part of Georgia Shakespeare’s summer Cabaret Nights. It’s no holds barred at this “Wildely” naughty night as members of the summer company let loose for an evening of tunes on the terrace.
Performances are Tuesday through Saturday at 8 p.m., Saturday, July 7 at 2 p.m., and Sunday at 2 and 7 p.m. Cabaret Night is July 13. Times vary by date. Tickets range from $13 to $45. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.gashakespeare.org or call the Georgia Shakespeare Box Office at 404.504.1473. Discounts are available for groups, seniors, students and members of the military.
The 2012 season is made possible by Charles Loridans Foundation, The Kendeda Fund, The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund, The Shubert Foundation, The Home Depot Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts and Turner Voices.
Girls (and Boys) Gone Oscar Wilde Cabaret
Friday, July 13 (after the 8 p.m. performance)
Georgia Shakespeare, Conant Performing Arts Center at Oglethorpe University