Lantern Theater Company's EMMA Continues Through 10/27
Lantern Theater Company reaches its milestone 20th year during the 2013/14 season, opening with the Philadelphia premiere of Jane Austen's classic and beloved novel Emma, adapted for the stage by Michael Bloom, running September 19 - October 27. To coincide with this production, the Lantern presents Regency and Revelry: The Jane Austen Festival, a five-day festival of readings, performances and other experiences from October 11 - 15.
In an adaptation created specifically for the stage, Emma playfully incorporates the theater medium to bring the audience into the world of Emma Woodhouse, a young, precocious and delightfully meddlesome matchmaker. While attempting to find a love match for her new friend Harriet Smith, Emma finds herself caught in the center of flirtatious misunderstandings among the villagers of Highburg. Sudden departures, secret engagements and unexpected romances ultimately collide for a smart ending that continues to captivate modern audiences.
"Every romantic novel today has been influenced, directly and indirectly, by Jane Austen's novels," says director Kathryn MacMillan. "Her characters stand the test of time, and her stories are adapted so often and so well because they are truthful and funny. Emma is a case study in folly and eccentricity. It's fun to watch what have become familiar tropes, like the 'too clever for her own good' young girl, yet the interpersonal relationships are still surprising and Austen's ability to create an ironic detachment keeps it modern."
Adds Artistic Director Charles McMahon, "Jane Austen represents a different type of challenge for the company - a different kind of storytelling that places new demands on design and that requires a new dialogue with our audiences. We're starting a new relationship with an author, as we have with Shakespeare, Fugard, McDonagh and others. As we take this opportunity to look back at what we've accomplished as a company over the past twenty years, Austen represents a new push forward into our future."
October 11-15, the Lantern will also present Regency and Revelry: The Jane Austen Festival. Through performances, lectures, book readings, demonstrations and experiential events, Regency & Revelry will offer a multi-faceted exploration into the world of Jane Austen.
Directed by the Lantern's Associate Artistic Director Kathryn MacMillan, Emma runs September 19 - October 27, 2013 (press opening: Wednesday, September 25, 7 p.m.). Tickets are $20 - $38 and are available online at lanterntheater.org or by calling the Lantern Box Office at (215) 829-0395. $10 student rush tickets are available 10 minutes before curtain with valid ID; cash only. Additional discounts are available for seniors, groups of 10 or more and U.S. military personnel. Lantern Theater Company is located at St. Stephen's Theater, 10th & Ludlow Streets in Center City Philadelphia.