Fox Valley Rep Presents BRIGHTON BEACH MEMOIRS, Now thru 10/19
Fox Valley Repertory continues their 2014 theater series with Neil Simon's heart-warming family comedy, Brighton Beach Memoirs. This coming-of-age memoir, directed by Ronan Marra, will take place at the Pheasant Run Resort Mainstage tonight, August 28 - October 19, 2014 (4051 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL; box office 630-584-6342).
Family life in 1937 was tough for 15-year-old Eugene Jerome: War was on the way, money was tight, liver was always for dinner, and as Eugene's father would point out, "If you didn't have a problem, you wouldn't live in this house." Living with six other Jewish-American family members under one roof doesn't afford him much privacy, but it does provide him with plenty of ammunition for his budding career as a writer. His journal excerpts are a true recipe for hilarity, as he introduces his over-worked father, his under-appreciated mother, his worldy older brother Stanley, his pampered cousins Nora and Laurie, and his widowed, asthmatic Aunt Blanche. This bittersweet memoir is an affectionate, entertaining lesson in overcoming hard times with warmth and humor. His memoirs about baseball, girls, and life in Brooklyn remind us all that love and laughter prevails.
An audience and critical favorite since it premiered in 1983, it was originally directed by Gene Saks and featured Matthew Broderick on stage. It was adapted into a film in 1986 starring Jonathan Silverman and Blythe Danner. Brighton Beach Memoirs was the winner of the New York Drama Critics award for Best Play of 1983, and was the first of a trilogy of semi-autobiographical plays written by Neil Simon that also included Biloxi Blues and Broadway Bound. Brighton Beach Memoirs and Broadway Bound were two of the longest running Broadway plays of the 1980s, resulting in a new era of appreciation for Neil Simon with praise for the playwright's hilarious and poignant account of his early family years in New York in the 1930s and 1940s.
"Brighton Beach Memoirs reveals real-life issues with real people, rather than unrealistic 'characters'," says Artistic Director John Gawlik. "Any family - regardless of finances, faith, age, etc - can identify to the situations the Jerome family experiences. The underlying issue of a family trying to stay strong during tough times is the real charm exemplified in this show."
The cast of Brighton Beach Memoirs features (in alphabetical order): Ariel Begley, Hoffman Estates native Stephanie Chavara, Brigitte Ditmars (Director/Choreographer of Fox Valley Rep's Nunsense in early 2014), Joseph Galizia, Ryan Stajmiger, Joseph Stearns and Des Plaines native Elizabeth Stenholt.
Brighton Beach Memoirs runs Thursday, August 28, 2014 through Sunday, October 19, 2014. Press Opening is Saturday, September 6, 2014 @ 8pm. Show times are: Fridays & Saturdays @ 8pm, and Sundays @ 2pm. Special Thursday performances are August 28 and September 4 @ 8pm, and September 18 & 25 and October 16 @ 2pm. The show is rated PG-13.
Tickets are priced at $32 on Fridays (and limited Thursday performances), and at $42 on Saturdays and Sundays. Dinner packages, group discounts and overnight rates are also available.
This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and is sponsored in part by Daily Herald, and MCC Technology.
Pheasant Run Resort is located at 4051 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL. For tickets, call the Pheasant Run Box Office at 630-584-6342, or visit www.ticketmaster.com. Additional performance information may be obtained at www.foxvalleyrep.org.