Peninsula Players to Host 'IRMA VEP' Pre-Show Seminar, 8/8

Peninsula Players to Host 'IRMA VEP' Pre-Show Seminar, 8/8

Peninsula Players Theatre, in conjunction with its production of Charles Ludlam's frighteningly funny farce "The Mystery of Irma Vep - A Penny Dreadful," will host speaker Dr. Gary Jones Friday, August 8 at 6:30 p.m. Tickets to the performance are available; admission to the pre-show seminar is free.

Jones is an award-winning writer and an English lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. He has an M.A. degree in English from UW-Madison and a Ph.D. in English from UW-Milwaukee.

The Drama Desk and Obie Award-winning comedy is a mash-up of true Victorian gothic romance and Universal monster movies. Jones will speak about the influences of classic gothic romances such as "Rebecca," "Wuthering Heights" and "Dracula" on "The Mystery of Irma Vep - A Penny Dreadful."

Patrons are welcome to come early and join Jones and Players artistic director Greg Vinkler in a 45-minute discussion prior to the show, which will be held in the theater starting at 6:30 p.m. Vinkler directed the Players production of "The Mystery of Irma Vep-A Penny Dreadful" and performed the roles of Lord Hillcrest and Jane in the Players 1993 production of Ludlam's hilarious comedy.

"When speaking with patrons about their favorite comedies 'Irma' is mentioned nine times out of 10," Vinkler said. "I am very excited to bring this fast-paced, comic romp back to Players audiences. I hope patrons take the opportunity to join us for the seminar. One does not need to know the background stories of 'Rebecca' or 'Wuthering Heights' to enjoy the comedy, but we hope this topic enhances the theatergoing experience."

The Players will host another pre-show seminar Wednesday, August 27 when Civil War re-enactor Joe Knaapen speaks before a performance of Richard Strand's drama about Major General Benjamin Butler, "Butler."

"The Mystery of Irma Vep - A Penny Dreadful" is sponsored by Barbara Jo Weko Witzke.

A post-show discussion with the playwright, cast and creative team of "The Mystery of Irma Vep - A Penny Dreadful" is slated for Wednesday, August 6. Audience members are invited to stay after the performance to participate.

The Peninsula Players perform Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 7:30 p.m. with a 4 p.m. matinee Sunday, Aug. 17 of "The Mystery of Irma Vep - A Penny Dreadful" and a 4 p.m. matinee Sunday, Aug. 31 for "Butler." Individual and group tickets are also available. Individual ticket prices range from $35 to $44. There are no performances on Mondays. For more information on future seminars or to reserve tickets phone the Peninsula Players box office at 920-868-3287 or visit the website at

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