New York Classical Theatre Announces Cast For Oscar Wilde's THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST

New York Classical Theatre (Stephen Burdman, Artistic Director) kicks off its 20th anniversary season with a gender-flipping production of Oscar Wilde's comic masterpiece The Importance of Being Earnest, with the entire cast swapping roles at every other performance. The production, directed by Stephen Burdman, also marks the debut of NY Classical's annual indoor performance, extending its season year-round and continuing its all-free performance policy. The production will be presented from March 5-24, 2019 at The Mezzanine Theatre at A.R.T./New York Theatres (502 West 53rd Street).

The cast will feature Ademide Akintilo (Shakespeare's Globe's A Midsummer Night's Dream), Kristen Calgaro (NY Classical's Much Ado About Nothing), Connie Castanzo (NY Classical's Romeo & Juliet), Jed Peterson (CHEERS: Live On Stage), Kate Goehring (Angels in America National Tour), John Michalski (Martin Luther on Trial), Tina Stafford (Once National Tour), and Clay Storseth (Moscow).

Production designer is Maddie Peterson. Lighting designer is Driscoll Otto.

The production will play Tuesday through Sunday at 7:00 PM. For more information, visit

Considered one of the great comedies in the English language, Wilde's 1895 classic is a satire of social manners and obligations in Victorian England. In NY Classical's production, the entire cast will swap roles (and genders) every other performance to explore the power dynamics in the script.

The Importance of Being Earnest will be NY Classical's first show presented in a traditional seated venue. For 19 years, NY Classical has provided free and approachable performances to the public in open, non-traditional spaces in iconic New York City settings, ranging from Governors Island and Brookfield Place, to Brooklyn Bridge Park and Central Park.

Since 2000, NY Classical has presented over 40 productions and more than 700 free performances of classic plays by Shakespeare, Moliere, Shaw, Chekhov, Schiller and Sheridan, for nearly a quarter of a million people. Attendees at NY Classical's performances range from theatre aficionados, to audiences who have never seen a play before, helping to develop new and future audiences.

Writing about the company's recent production of Romeo & Juliet, the Washington Post said, It was a wonderful way to see how a company can claim Shakespeare for new audiences and rekindle it for the more familiar, one beguiled city dweller at a time. The company has been hailed as a firmly rooted cultural institution of the city, by, as well as a movable feast and a rollicking exercise in participatory theatre by The New York Times.

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