Bruce Nelson & Susan Rome to Lead Center Stage & KC Rep's VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKE

Bruce Nelson & Susan Rome to Lead Center Stage & KC Rep's VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKE

Center Stage announces this week casting for the upcoming production of Christopher Durang's Tony Award-winning comedy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. A co-production with Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike will be under the direction of the Rep's Artistic Director Eric Rosen. After running at Kansas City Rep through April 6, it will transfer to Center Stage and play April 16-May 25.

"Chekhov famously opined that his brooding, angst-filled plays were comedies, and Durang has shown the world that Chekhov was right," says Rosen. "Pulling characters from famous Chekhov plays and placing them in a contemporary Bucks County, PA, crumbling family home is absurd-and Durang is a master of the form. Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike is a deeply funny, profoundly smart, and ultimately moving comedy, and I can't wait to share our co-production with the great audiences at Kansas City Rep and Center Stage."

The Baltimore production of Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike brings back to Center Stage Bruce Nelson, who appeared earlier this season in the wildly popular Marx Brothers comedy Animal Crackers. Joining him is local actor Susan Rome, who was previously at Center Stage for last season's World Premiere Mud Blue Sky. Also joining the production in Baltimore is Kerry Warren, making her Center Stage debut. Ms. Warren most recently appeared as Hero in Much Ado About Nothing at New York's Public Theater, directed by Kwame Kwei-Amah.

Transferring from the Kansas City Rep production are Barbara Walsh (Sonia), a Tony Award-nominee for Falsettos; Zachary Andrews (Spike), who just completed his Rep appearance in Romeo and Juliet; and Emily Peterson (Nina), a veteran of several seasons at Kansas City Rep.

Vanya and his sister Sonia have frittered their lives away living in the same farmhouse where they were raised. When their quiet existence is rocked by the arrival of their glamorous movie star sister Masha and her hunky boy toy, Spike, a lifetime of sibling rivalry explodes into a weekend of comedic pyrotechnics. Hailed as "a sublime state of hilarity" (New York Magazine), acclaimed playwright Christopher Durang weaves together Chekhovian themes and modern wit in this Tony Award-winning new comedy.

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike by Christopher Durang, directed by Eric Rosen, begins previews on Wednesday, April 16, officially opens on Wednesday, April 23, and runs through May 25. Tickets start at $19 and can be purchased by calling 410.332.0033, or visiting www.centerstage.org.

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike is sponsored Legg Mason. Center Stage is supported by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC), an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. An agency of the Department of Business & Economic Development, the MSAC provides financial support and technical assistance to nonprofit organizations, units of government, colleges, and universities for arts activities. Funding for the MSAC is also provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Center Stage's 2013-14 Season is made possible by Season 51 presenting sponsor M&T Bank. Maryland Public Television is a Media Partner for Center Stage's 2013-14 Season.

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