Seattle Shakespeare Company Presents PYGMALION, 2/23-3/11
Tickets to Pygmalion are available now through the Seattle Shakespeare Company Box Office at 206-733-8222 as well as online at www.seattleshakespeare.org.
George Bernard Shaw's barbed comedy depicts the unlikely relationship between the Cockney flower seller Eliza Doolittle and her stuffy phonetics professor Henry Higgins. After picking out Eliza from the gutter to be his experiment, Higgins teaches her to talk like a lady. Eliza, in turn, schools him on what it truly means to be a gentleman.
Although director Jeff Steitzer performed in Shaw's plays while in college (he actually appeared in a production of Major Barbara with actress Jeanne Paulsen who is in Seattle Shakespeare Company's production of Pygmalion), it wasn't until he got involved with a group called Project Shaw in New York that he became re-enamored with the plays. "Shaw, not unlike Sondheim, is often talked about as being all head and no heart, and that is so not true," says Steitzer. "At a number of these staged readings with Project Shaw I found myself bathed in tears by the end. There was that much depth and complexity to the plays, and that is every bit as true for Pygmalion. It's not just light fare, which is how I think so many people see Shaw."
Steitzer has added the character of 'Shaw' to Seattle Shakespeare Company's production of Pygmalion. "'Shaw' will be a kind of master of ceremonies, who will basically deliver material based on Shaw's stage directions and some of his other writings as a way of leading us into the play."
Actors Mark Anders and R. Hamilton Wright will be making their Seattle Shakespeare Company debuts at Henry Higgins and Colonel Pickering. Jennifer Lee Taylor and Jeanne Paulsen, who both appeared in last season's production of Cymbeline, return to the stage as Eliza Doolittle and Mrs. Higgins. Also featured in the cast are: Beth A. Cooper (Mrs. Pearce), Trick Danneker (Freddy Eynsford-Hill), Amy Hill (Clara Eynsford-Hill), A. Bryan Humphrey (Shaw/Alfred Doolittle), and Marty Mukhalian (Mrs. Eynsford-Hill).