STEEL MAGNOLIAS Opens at Bristol Riverside Theatre, 3/20-4/8
Laughter and tears, gossip and home-grown advice are as prevalent as hair rollers in Truvy's Beauty Salon, the setting of the heartwarming comedy-drama Steel Magnolias by Robert Harling, playing at Bristol Riverside Theatre on March 20-April 8. Susan D. Atkinson directs an ensemble cast of BRT favorites including Jennie Eisenhower, Diane Findlay,Laura C. Giknis, Barbara McCulloh, Susan Moses, and Jo Twiss.
Previews begin Tuesday, March 20 with opening night on Thursday, March 22. Performances run Wednesday through Sunday until April 8. Tickets are available from $30-$50, with discounts for students, military and groups. Tickets are available by visiting brtstage.org or calling the BRT Box Office at 215-785-0100. Bristol Riverside Theatre is located at 120 Radcliffe Street in Bristol, PA.
Set entirely in the beauty parlor of Truvy Jones, Steel Magnolias is about a group of lovable, zany women in Chinquapin Parish, Louisiana who share love, laughs, joy and even insults. The title suggests that female characters are as delicate as magnolias but as tough as steel. This is the unforgettable story of six southern women who stand together laughing in order to survive the tears. The 1987 off-Broadway hit was developed into a film starring Julia Roberts, Shirley MacLaine, Olympia Dukakis. Sally Field, Dolly Parton and Darryl Hannah, and subsequently revived on Broadway in 2005.
Susan D. Atkinson (Director) is the founding director of BRT. With a theatrical career spanning 40 years of directing, producing, and teaching on both the east and west coasts, she has directed well over 150 plays and musicals in her career, including world and area premieres from such playwrights and composers as Doug Katsoras, Mark St. Germain, Dan Rustin, Michael Hickey and Larry Gatlin. For BRT, Atkinson recently directed this season's world premiere of A Raw Space as well as such shows as The Good Earth, Wintertime, Irma La Douce, Alive and Well, The Price, 110 in the Shade, A Sunbeam, Inspecting Carol, A Moon for the Misbegotten, Arsenic and Old Lace, A Little Night Music, Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, Holiday, Talley's Folly and Proof. In 1998, Ms. Atkinson directed Larry Gatlin's Texas Flyer both at BRT and at Theatre Under The Stars in Houston, Texas.
Laura C. Giknis (Annelle) was previously seen at BRT as Maria in Up. She has appeared at People's Light & Theatre Company in both Fallow and Panto: The Three Musketeers (The Later Years) and at 11th Hour Theatre Company in both Little Shop of Horrors and Reefer Madness. She was selected Best Supporting Actress of the Year (2009-2010) byPhiladelphia Weekly.
Jennie Eisenhower (Shelby) has accumulated five Barrymore nominations, winning the Best Actress Award forForbidden Broadway and the Best Supporting Actress Award for The Wild Party. A frequent guest at BRT, she has recently been seen in Little Women (where she earned one of her Barrymore nominations) and The Foreigner. She has also appeared at Arden Theatre Company, The Wilma Theater, People's Light & Theatre Company, Act II Playhouse and 11th Hour Theatre.
Diane Findlay (Clairee) was last seen at BRT in The Spitfire Grill. She has also appeared in Tales of the City at American Conservatory Theatre and in the title role of I Loved Lucy. In addition to New York credits including 70, Girls, 70 &Follies at Encores!, she has toured with the national companies of Promises, Promises and in the international company of42nd Street. The recipient of the Las Vegas Female Performer of the Year Award, she has been featured in many day time soap operas, Law & Order and the soon-to-be-released pilot of Middle Ages.
Susan Moses (Ouiser) has been featured at BRT in The Foreigner and Moon Over Buffalo. Locally she has also appeared in Last of the Boys at InterAct Theatre Company, and Sleeping Arrangements and After-Play, both at Walnut Street Theatre. Off-Broadway she has been seen at Irish Arts Center, Westside Theatre, REV Theatre Company, and L'Opera Francaise of New York.
Barbara McCulloh (M'Lynn) has appeared on Broadway as Anna in The King and I and as Mrs. Darling in Peter Pan, at Lincoln Center in The House in Town, and on the national tours of Brighton Beach Memoirs, South Pacific, and Peter Pan. Off-Broadway she has performed at Manhattan Theatre Club and Jewish Rep where she won the Outer Circle Critics Award for Kuni Leml. She has appeared at BRT in Blithe Spirit, The Skin of Our Teeth, Baby, The Robber Bridegroom, and 110 in the Shade which earned her a Barrymore nomination. Other regional credits include performances at Studio Arena, Pioneer Theater, Syracuse Stage, and Virginia Stage.
Jo Twiss (Truvy) has appeared at BRT in Up, which earned her a BroadwayWorld.com nomination for Best Actress, as well as The Spitfire Grill, Mrs. Bob Cratchit's Wild Christmas Binge, and Always Patsy Cline. Most recently she played inPride and Prejudice, Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet at the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Company. She starred in Rabbit Hole at both Pittsburgh Public Theatre and Hartford's Theatre Works and in The Travels of Angelica at Cincinnati in the Park. On Broadway she appeared as Big Mamma in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, a role she reprised in St. Louis and Cincinnati where she won an Acclaim Award for her performance.
Steel Magnolias is made possible through the generous support of its Corporate Partner Lenox.
The BRT mainstage season concludes with the mega-hit, award-winning musical Rent by Jonathan Larson (May 8-June 3).
Since 1986, BRT has brought consistently acclaimed professional theatre to Bucks County and maintained a long-term commitment to finding and developing new plays. The theatre is the recipient of over 66 Barrymore Award nominations for Excellence in Theatre, given annually by the Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia. In addition to its mainstage productions, the theatre serves as a cultural hub for the community, with such programs as children's theatre, community concerts and exhibitions of local visual arts. Currently under the direction of Artistic Director Keith Baker, Founding Director Susan D. Atkinson, and Managing Director, Amy Kaissar, BRT is celebrating 25th anniversary season. For information, visitwww.brtstage.org.