Geva Completes Casting for YOU CANÂ'T TAKE IT WITH YOU
Geva Theatre Center's 40th Anniversary Season gets off to a stellar start with You Can't Take It With You by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman, directed by Mark Cuddy. Stage and screen star Robert Vaughn leads an ensemble cast of Geva favorites "coming home" to help the theatre to celebrate this landmark occasion. You Can't Take It With You begins performances on September 11 and runs in the Elaine P. Wilson Mainstage through October 7.
A 1930's screwball comedy that pits the eccentric Sycamore family – prone to spontaneous eruptions of music, dance poetry and fireworks – against the buttoned-up bigwigs of Wall Street and the IRS. When Alice Sycamore agrees to marry the son of ultra-conservative parents, will true love win out? A Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway classic the whole family will enjoy!
You Can't Take It With You premiered on Broadway in 1936 at the Booth Theatre, where it ran for 837 performances. It won a number of awards including the 1937 Pulitzer Prize for Drama - the first play to be so honored. A 1938 motion picture based on the play was directed by Frank Capra and starred Jimmy Stewart, Jean Arthur and Lionel Barrymore. Nominated for seven Academy Awards, the film won the Oscars for Best Picture and Best Director.
The ensemble cast is led by Robert Vaughn, who makes his Geva Theatre Center debut as the family patriarch, Martin Vanderhof. Most notable to television viewers for his portrayal of Napoleon Solo in "The Man from U.N.C.L.E.," Mr. Vaughn has appeared in over 100 major motion pictures including The Young Philadelphians, for which he received an Academy Award nomination; Bullitt, for which he received a BAFTA; The Towering Inferno; Superman III; Excuse Me for Living; Happy Hour and the iconic film, The Magnificent Seven. In addition to "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.," he has had prominent roles in some of the most acclaimed TV series of all time including "Dragnet;" "Gunsmoke;" "Mike Hammer;" "Bonanza;" "The Virginian;" "The Dick Van Dyke Show;" "The Lieutenant;" "Police Woman;" "Columbo;" "Trapper John, M.D.;" "The A Team;" "Hunter;" "Murder, She Wrote," "Law & Order" and many, many others.
Artistic Director Mark Cuddy chose to begin the 40th Anniversary season with You Can't Take it With You as a "homecoming" for many of the actors in the ensemble. Melissa Rain Anderson (Essie) was seen last season in A Christmas Carol (2010 and 2011) as well as Convenience (2001-2002 Season), Urinetown (2006-2007 Season) and Inherit the Wind (2005-2006 Season). Nora Cole (Rheba) wowed Rochester audiences in the Nextstage last season in her one-woman show, Voices of the Spirits in My Soul, and appeared in Fences during the 2008-2009 Season. Peggy Cosgrave (Mrs. Kirby) returns to the Mainstage where she appeared in Pride and Prejudice (2007-2008 Season), Our Town (2006-2007 Season) and House and Garden (2001-2002 Season). Skip Greer (Paul Sycamore) appeared on the Mainstage in last season's Superior Donuts, and 2010's The Music Man and Brigitt Markusfeld (Penelope Sycamore) was seen in Over the Tavern (2010-2011 Season) and in A Christmas Story (2008 and 2009). Jim Poulos (Ed) appeared in last season's productions of Company and A Christmas Carol and in previous productions of Amadeus (2010-2011 Season), Convenience and Urinetown. Robert Rutland (Henderson/Mr. Kirby) returns to Geva where he has appeared in Amadeus, Pride and Prejudice, To Kill a Mockingbird (1995-1996), Women Who Steal (1999-2000 Season), John Bull's Other Island (2004-2005 Season) and Inherit the Wind. After a 30-year absence, Kim Sullivan (Donald) returns to Geva where he last appeared in The Hostage during the 1978-1979 Season.