THE PRIDE Opens April 5 at Diversionary

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THE PRIDE Opens April 5 at Diversionary

After runs in London and New York, Alexi Kaye Campbell's The Pride makes its San Diego premiere this week at Diversionary Theatre.

The Pride is a time shifting exploration of identity and passion. Oliver, Philip, and Sylvia are caught in a love triangle. Their complex and tumultuous relationship shifts from the repression of 1958 to the sexual liberation of 2008 and back again. Characters in the past and modern day share the same names and are played by the same actors. It starts in 1958 with Philip, an uptight estate agent, and his wife Sylvia, who are entertaining a young novelist, Oliver. There is an unspoken but palpable tension that results in a passionate and guilt ridden affair between Philip and Oliver. Sylvia is filled with a deep loneliness and caught in a loveless marriage. In 2008, Oliver is a sex-addicted journalist who longs to get back together with his ex, Philip. Sylvia plays the friend stuck in the middle.

2011 Craig Noel winning director Glenn Paris (Angels in America part 1 and 2) directs this look at love, betrayal and personal pride by Alexi Kaye Campbell. Featuring four of San Diego's most acclaimed actors, Francis Gercke (Philip), Jessica John (Sylvia), Brian Mackey (Oliver), and Dangerfield G. Moore (Doctor, Man, Peter).

The design team includes Matt Scott (scenic), Michelle Caron (lighting), David Medina (props), Omar Ramos (sound & original Music) and Trista Roland (costumes).

In his play The Pride, playwright Alexi Kaye Campbell explores how taking pride in oneself is necessary for change. The gay community is still working towards equal rights (marriage equality) and how to be part of the larger world. How has gay rights progressed since 1958, (living more out and open, repeal of don't ask don't tell, gay marriage in some states, etc.) and where can we still make progress?

Alexi speaks about the process of writing a play as "something that comes from somewhere unconscious which is not mine and so my interpretation of what I've written is a subjective one." According to Campbell, "The real core of the play is in these people (the three main characters) all trying to understand something of the forces that drive them."

The Pride Director, Glenn Paris was drawn to the theme of pride in the play, saying, "The character, Oliver in 2008 makes the argument that one should be proud of who they are, in his case a gay man, and the play develops the idea that taking pride in ourselves is political within the context of community. The playwright, Alexi Kaye Campbell furthers the idea by developing the theme that pride in one's community is necessary for change."

He is also drawn to challenging roles for the actors, "The Pride is unique in its style and a lot of fun for the three principle actors as they alternate between playing characters in 1958 and 2008. Their names are the same but they are different people in different relationships."

About the Company:

Alexi Kaye Campbell (Author) Alexi's first play, The Pride, was on at The Royal Court Theatre Upstairs in November 2008 for which he was awarded the Critic's Circle Prize for Most Promising Playwright and the John Whiting award for Best New Play. The production was also awarded the Olivier award for Outstanding Achievement in an affiliate theatre. The Pride then transferred to America and was produced at MCC Theatre in New York in January 2010 directed by Joe Mantello. His second play, Apologia was on at the Bush Theatre in the summer of 2009, directed by Josie Rourke. Apologia was short- listed for The John Whiting Award and nominated for Best Play at the Writers Guild Awards 2009. In June 2011 a revival of The Pride was produced at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield, directed by Richard Wilson. Alexi's third play The Faith Machine directed by Jamie Lloyd, premiered at the Royal Court in August 2010. Alexi's plays have been produced in many countries, including Australia, Germany, Sweden, Greece and Belgium. He is currently under commission at Hampstead Theatre and The Royal National Theatre.

GLENN PARIS (Director) is the producing artistic director of ion theatre company here in San Diego and co-directed with Claudio Raygoza the Diversionary/ion co-production of Bent. Directing credits for ion include, Angels In America Parts 1 And 2 (with Claudio Raygoza), Request Programme (2008, 2012), Grace, The Woolgather, Bash: Latterday Plays (2012, 2008), Wonder Wounded Heroes, Hurlyburly (San Diego Critics Circle/Craig Noel Award~Outstanding Ensemble), All In The Timing, Speed-The-Plow, In A Dark, Dark House, The Cripple of Inishmaan, La Gaviota, Punks (Patte Award, Outstanding Ensemble), The Glass Menagerie, Krapp's Last Tape. As an actor for ion, he performed in Mud and The Chairs. For 6th @ Penn: Adam Baum; for Playwrights Project, Step Into The Night. In NYC, Revering The Dark at The Kitchen; The Flip Side, After All, The Roadblock at HB Playwrights (former Artistic Director). MFA, Directing Carnegie Mellon University. With Claudio Raygoza, Mr. Paris was named Producer of the Year 2010 by the San Diego Critics Circle and ion received the first Don Braunagel Award this year from the Circle for Angels In America.

FRANCIS GERCKE (Philip) has appeared in theatre productions throughout San Diego including: Proof, The Merchant of Venice, In the Next Room, In the Wake (San Diego Rep); Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Love Song, Tragedy of The Commons, Desire Under the Elms, Our Town, The Glass Menagerie (Cygnet Theatre); A Life in the Theatre (NCRT); Hurlyburly, Grace (ion theatre); True West, Orphans, Three Sisters, A Hatful of Rain, The Only Game in Town, The Waverly Gallery, Nocturne, Playboy of the Western World (New Village Arts). Directing credits include A Lie of the Mind, Three Sisters, Playboy of the Western World, A Hatful of Rain, The Only Game in Town (New Village Arts); Mauritius, Dying City, The Man from Nebraska, Curse of the Starving Class (Cygnet Theatre). He is co-founder and former artistic director of the theatre company New Village Arts and the former associate artistic director of Cygnet Theatre. He has been a recipient of the KPBS Patte Award and San Diego Theatre Critics Circle Award for his work as an actor and as a director. He has been a faculty member at Palomar College, University of San Diego, and California State University San Marcos and is the founder of Actors Approach, a weekly private acting class. He received his masters degree from The Actors Studio Drama School at the New School for Social Research in New York.

JESSICA JOHN (Sylvia) is delighted to return to Diversionary Theatre where she previously appeared in Pulp! (co-production with Moxie) and A Bright Room Called Day (co-production with BackyaRD Productions). Other select San DieGo Productions include ion Theatre: Angels in America; Moonlight Avo Theatre: The Mousetrap, Barefoot in the Park, Ring Round the Moon; Cygnet Theatre (Resident Artist): Private Lives, Noises Off (SD Critic's Circle - Best Ensemble), Mauritius, Love Song, Desire Under the Elms, Communicating Doors (Patte - Best Production), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (SD Playbill - Best Actress), Burn This (SD Critic's Circle - Best Actress); North Coast Repertory Theatre: Lend Me a Tenor, A Shayna Maidel; New Village Arts: The Playboy of the Western World (Patte - Best Actress); and Renaissance Theatre: A View from the Bridge (SD Critic's Circle - Best Actress). She was named one of the top 50 People to Watch by San Diego Magazine.

BRIAN MACKEY (Oliver) Previously at Diversionary: The Little Dog Laughed, As Much As You Can, Corpus Christi. Elsewhere: In the Next Room or The Vibrator Play (San Diego Rep); The Glass Menagerie, The History Boys (Cygnet); The Woolgatherer, Bash: Latter-Day Plays, Jack Goes Boating, All in the Timing, A Streetcar Named Desire, The Grapes of Wrath (ion theatre); An Enemy of the People (Intrepid); A Christmas Carol ('07, '08, '09), Little Women (North Coast Rep); Night Sky (Mo'olelo); The Heidi Chronicles, Julius Caesar (New Village Arts); Side Man (BANG!); If The Shoe Fits (Coronado Playhouse); The Best Mistake (Playwrights Project). Regional credits include: The Playboy of the Western World (Cinnabar Theatre); A Bright Room Called Day (Actor's Theatre); No. 11 Blue and White (ABYDOS Theatre). Brian was awarded the 2011 SD Critics Circle Actor of the Year and is a Resident Artist at ion theatre and a Company Member of Cygnet Theatre.

DANGERFIELD G. Moore (Doctor, Man, Peter) Dangerfield is thrilled to be involved with Diversionary. He was previously seen at Diversionary as Bill in Learn to be Latina and Gaveston in Edward II. He also played Enrico in A Roman Holiday (Coronado Playhouse). North Coast Rep production of Henry 4 Part 1 and Vanguards production of Hamlet. He has extensive credits in stage and film. He received his Bachelor's in drama from the University of Pittsburgh.

Performance Details:

Performances run from April 5 through May 6, 2012 at Diversionary Theatre 4545 Park Blvd. San Diego CA 92116. Previews April 5 and 6. Official opening night is Saturday, April 7. Thurs – Sat. at 8 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m. through May 6. Ticket prices are $31-$33, Previews (April 5 & 6) $20.00.

For tickets or information, call the Diversionary box office at 619.220.0097 or visit www.diversionary.org.

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