Lyceum Theatre Continues 50th Season with THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER, 8/7-14

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Written by the incomparable team of George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart, The Man Who Came To Dinner tells the story of SheriDan Whiteside, a theatre critic/lecturer and radio personality, arriving to dine at the home of the prominent Stanley family in a small Midwestern town. Whiteside slips and falls at the doorstep of his hosts and injures his hip. For six weeks Sheridan is confined to the Stanley home where he monopolizes the entire household! Featuring one of the largest Lyceum casts ever assembled, this stylish and funny production will keep audiences laughing as the outrageous becomes commonplace!

SheriDan Whiteside will be played by Lyceum veteran Michael Rothhaar, last seen in at the Lyceum in the 2009 production of You Can't Take It With You. Michael has been a professional actor since 1975 with Broadway credits that include The Front Page and The Corn Is Green. Off-Broadway credits include Frankenstein and Brand. Regional theatre credits include The Foreigner, (S. F. Company), Shear Madness, (L. A. Company), the American premiere of Simon Gray's Dog Days , and performances at the Geffen Playhouse, Mark Taper Forum, Cincinnati Playhouse, Rep/St. Louis, Capital Rep, Pacific Resident Theatre and Olney Theatre among many others. In addition to his many acting credits, Mr. Rothhaar has been a professional director since 1985 and most recently directed the ever popular My Fair Lady at the Lyceum.

The role of Maggie Cutler, personal assistant to Mr. Whiteside, will be played by Kathryn Merry in her Lyceum debut. Ms. Merry toured nationally in Othello. Her regional theatre credits include: Hamlet, Much Ado About Nothing, Moon Over Buffalo and Laughter on the 23rd Floor. Film credits include Cult of Sincerity, Plasterhead and The Creek.

Eric Van Tielen follows up his role as Freddy Eysndford-Hill in My Fair Lady with the role of Bert Jefferson in The Man Who Came To Dinner. Recently, Eric finished the national tour of Fiddler on the Roof playing Fyedka. He made his Broadway debut with the musical adaptation of A Tale of Two Cities. For several years Mr. Van Tielen performed with the Utah Shakespearean Festival in such roles as Cornelius in Matchmaker, and Sir Lionel in Camelot among others.

Also making her Lyceum debut is Celeste Ciulla in the role of Lorraine Sheldon. Ms. Ciulla has spent the last four years at The Old Globe Theatre in San Diego performing in the world premiere of Duncan Sheik's musical Whisper House, as well as Coriolanus and The Merry Wives of Windsor. Her many other roles include Lady Macbeth, Titania and Laura Reynolds in Tea and Sympathy.

 

Having just finished playing Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady, Michael McKenzie returns to the Lyceum stage as the Noel Coward inspired, Beverly Carlton, in The Man Who Came To Dinner. Michael appeared on Broadway in Waiting in the Wings, The Man Who Came to Dinner and Eastern Standard. Off-Broadway he was in Kari Floren's Voices of Swords and If Wishes Were Horses, and toured for two seasons with John Houseman's The Acting Company. Mr. McKenzie's extensive regional stage credits include Pittsburgh Public, Pioneer Theater, Hartford Stage, Olney Theatre and the Goodman to name a few. Film and Television credits include Kidnapped, Law & Order, As The World Turns, Chicago Hope, Babes, All My Children, and many episodes of Babylon 5.

The roles of Mr. and Mrs. Stanley will be played by Drew Taylor and Peggy Billo. Mr. Taylor just completed the role of Alfred P. Doolittle in My Fair Lady. Drew was a member of the original Broadway cast of The Sweet Smell of Success and performed in the National Tours of Annie, Doctor Dolittle, Oliver, Gigi and Can-Can. His other theatre credits include The History Boys (Northern Stage), High Button Shoes (Goodspeed), Funny Girl (Papermill), Anything Goes (Westchester Broadway), All About Us (Westport Playhouse). Film/TV: Great Expectations, Ransom, One Life To Live, The Guiding Light. The Emmy winning Independent film The Replacement Child (Sundance Festival). Peggy Billo has been seen on the Lyceum stage in as Penny Sycamore in You Can't Take It With You, Mrs. Van Daan in The Diary of Anne Frank and Reverend Mother in Nunsense. Most recently she was again seen as Mrs. Van Daan in the St Louis Repertory Theatre's production of The Diary of Anne Frank, and as Madame Pernelle in Tartuffe at Mustard Seed Theatre. Ms. Billo toured nationally in Annie. In Los Angeles she appeared in Bunbury (Ovation Nom) and The Pagans (ADA/Best Ensemble). Film/TV credits include 3rd Rock From the Sun, 7th Heaven, Bold & Beautiful and Dr. Benny.

Lyceum Theatre Artistic Director Quin Gresham returns to the Lyceum stage this season as Banjo, a character inspired by the antics of Harpo Marx. Quin has performed in more than 40 productions at the Lyceum, his most recent being the hilarious comedy Red, White and Tuna earlier this season. Quin opened the 2010 50th Anniversary season directing The Producers. In 2009, he directed both Hairspray and Sleuth. Quin's favorite acting roles include James Leeds in Children of a Lesser God, George Kitteredge in The Philadelphia Story, Ben in The Sunshine Boys, Dr. Sanderson in Harvey, Bud Frump in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest, and Tom in The Glass Menagerie.

Lyceum alumni Richert Easley, having just come off the role of Colonel Pickering in My Fair Lady at the Lyceum, returns as Dr. Bradley in The Man Who Came To Dinner. Lyceum audiences will remember him from his 2006 role as the inspiring Morrie in Tuesdays With Morrie. Most recently he appeared as Mr. Woodhouse in the musical Emma at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. Mr. Easley's Broadway credits include an acclaimed revival of Porgy and Bess, and Oh! Calcutta! Richert is a veteran of many regional theatres throughout the United States.

Completing the cast will be Anne Marie Bills, Lincoln Ward, Lauren Motil, Harold L. Hynick, Amber Hurd, Michael J. Richardson, Michael Brennan, Tempe McGlaughlin, J. Amber Scott, Mary Burge, Rich Lawson, Vince Lutterbie, Neil Patrick Cathro, Cole Walker, Blake Savidge, Kieran Brennan and Steve Bertani.

The production team is made up of Michael Evan Haney, director, Shawn Irish, scenic designer, Heather Roberson, assistant scenic designer, Randy B. Winder, lighting designer, Evan Prizant, costume designer, Ryan Matthew Hall, sound designer.

Production stage manager is Tony Dearing. Assistant stage manager is Emilee Buchheit.

 

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Chris Gibson Chris has been active in the local theatre scene for over 30 years. In addition to his acting work, he's also contributed as a director, writer and composer. Though, initially a film buff, he grew tired of the sanitized, PG-13 rated blockbusters that were being continually shoved down his throat by the studios. An opportunity to review theatre in St. Louis has grown exponentially with the sudden explosion of venues and talent in the region. He now finds himself obsessed with witnessing those precious, electric moments that can only happen live, on stage.


 
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