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A Red Orchid Theatre Presents THE MANDRAKE 4/8-5/24

A Red Orchid Theatre closes its 2010-2011 Season with Machiavelli's The Mandrake, translated by Peter Constantine and directed by Steve Scott. The production will run April 8 - May 24, 2011 at A Red Orchid Theatre, 1531 N. Wells. Press opening is Monday, April 11 at 7:00PM.

Callimaco loves Lucrezia, Lucrezia is married to Nicia, Nicia wants a baby... enter Ligurio and add a corrupt priest, the doting mother and the root of the mandrake to make for an extraordinarily complicated and hilarious plan. With everyone behaving so badly, can anyone possibly win?

"Our General Manager Cristophre Kayser has a PHD in Political Theory, and when he first brought us Peter Constantine's brilliant translation of Machiavelli's The Mandrake, we were both delighted and surprised to find ourselves rolling with laughter and cringing with disgust as the play unfolded," says Artistic Director Kirsten Fitzgerald. "The ways in which individuals - including myself - justify bad behavior has always amazed me, and the politics in this play are fascinating, horrifying, and, ultimately, hilarious.

Machiavelli's The Mandrake features A Red Orchid Ensemble Members Lance Baker (Ligurgio), Steve Haggard (Callimaco) and Doug Vickers (Messer Nichia), with David Chrzanowski (Friar Timoteo), Brian Kavanaugh (Siro), Cheyenne Pinson (Lucrezia) and Lucinda Johnston (Sostrata).
The creative team includes Grant Sabin (Set Designer), Jeremy W Floyd (Costume Designer), Michael Stanfill (Lighting Designer), Joe Fosco (Sound Designer), Doug Kupferman (Properties Designer). The Stage Manager is Stephanie Heller. Kelli Marino is Dramaturg, and Machiavelli and Political Theory Consultant is Cristophre Kayser.

Peter Constantine's most recent translations are Self's Murder, by Bernhard Schlink (Vintage Books, 2009), Sophocles's Three Theban Plays (Barnes & Noble Classics, 2008) and The Essential Writings of Machiavelli (Modern Library, 2007). He was awarded the PEN Translation Prize for Six Early Stories, by Thomas Mann, and the National Translation Award for The Undiscovered Chekhov. His translation of the complete works of Isaac Babel received the Koret Jewish Literature Award and a National Jewish Book Award citation. He has recently translated Within Four Walls: The Correspondence between Hannah Arendt and Heinrich Blücher, 1936-1968 for Harcourt, and Gogol's Taras Bulba, Tolstoy's The Cossacks, and Voltaire's Candide for Modern Library. He was one of the editors for A Century of Greek Poetry: 1900-2000 and The Greek Poets: Homer to the Present (W.W. Norton, 2010). He is currently working on a translation of The Essential Writings of Rousseau for The Modern Library. He is the recipient of a 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship for his translation of Emmanuel Roidis.

Steve Scott is the Associate Producer of Goodman Theatre, where he has overseen more than 150 productions; he is also a member of Goodman's Artistic Collective. His Goodman directing credits include Horton Foote's Blind Date; Rabbit Hole; Binky Rudich and the Two-Speed Clock and No One Will Be Immune for the David Mamet Festival; Dinner With Friends; Wit; the world premiere of Tom Mula's Jacob Marley's Christmas Carol; A Midsummer Night's Dream (co-directed with Michael Maggio); and four seasons of A Christmas Carol. Other recent directing credits include A Delicate Balance, Lettice and Lovage and Shadowlands for Redtwist Theatre; Souvenir at Northlight Theatre;The Beauty Queen of Leenane, Buried Child and Dealer's Choice for Shattered Globe Theatre; The DNA Trail and Yohen for Silk Road Theatre Company; Frozen for The Next Theatre Company; A Midsummer Night's Dream and Much Ado About Nothing for the St. Lawrence (Ontario) Shakespeare Festival; The Teapot Scandals of 1923 and Falsettos for Porchlight Theatre; Execution of Justice, Ah, Wilderness!, God's Country, and Judgment at Nuremberg for the Theatre Conservatory at Roosevelt University's College of Performing Arts (where he is a faculty member); and a number of productions for the Eclipse Theatre (where he is an ensemble member), including Arthur Miller's After the Fall, John Guare's Six Degrees of Separation, Rebecca Gilman's Boy Gets Girl, Keith Reddin's Big Time, Neil Simon's Plaza Suite, and Lanford Wilson's The Moonshot Tapes. He has directed for a variety of other companies, including Theatre Wit, the Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, National Jewish Theatre, Theater at the Center, Lifeline Theatre, Organic Touchstone Theatre, and the Lyric Opera Center for American Artists. Mr. Scott has served on panels for Theatre Communications Group, the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center, the Chicago Council on Fine Arts, the Illinois Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Pew Charitable Trust/Philadelphia Theatre Initiative. He is a member of the Jeff Committee's Artist and Technical Team, a board member of Season of Concern, and an associate artist with About Face, Chicago Dramatists, and Colllaboraction Theatre companies. He was one of six resident directors for WBEZ's series Stories on Stage, and has contributed articles to a variety of publications, including the Encyclopedia of Chicago. Mr. Scott is the recipient of five Jeff nominations, an After Dark Award, and the Illinois Theatre Association's Award of Honor. As an actor, he most recently appeared in The Next Theatre's production of Are You Now or Have You Ever Been...? (Jeff Award for Outstanding Ensemble). Upcoming projects include David Henry Hwang's Yellow Face for Silk Road.

Lance Baker (Ligurio) is a proud ensemble member of A Red Orchid, where he's appeared in The Grey Zone and Hunger and Thirst, and directed The Earl and A Very Merry Unauthorized Children's Scientology Pageant. He has received one Jeff citation, for Solo Performance in Will Eno's Thom Pain (based on nothing). Other theaters include work with Goodman, Court, Northlight, Chicago Shakespeare, Steppenwolf, Victory Gardens, Theater Wit, Roadworks, Redmoon, Lookingglass, Rivendell, Remains, and Theater at the Center, where he's appearing with Larry Yando in Sleuth until March 20. His alma mater is The Theater School of DePaul University.

Steve Haggard (Callimaco) is happy to be returning home to A Red Orchid where he was last seen in Kimberly Akimbo. Other credits include As You Like It and Romeo and Juliet at Chicago Shakespeare, Old Glory (Writers' Theatre), Almost Maine (Milwaukee Rep), A Christmas Carol (Goodman Theatre), The Comedy of Errors, The Winter's Tale, Ah, Wilderness, Hay Fever, and A Midsummer Night's Dream with American Players Theatre, She Stoops to Conquer (Northlight), The Subject was Roses (Writers' Theatre), Power (Remy Bumppo), Our Town (Writers' Theatre), and Measure for Measure and In the Blood (Next Theatre). Steve is a A Red Orchid Theatre ensemble member and a graduate of De Paul University.

Doug Vickers (Messer Nicia) is a proud ensemble member of A Red Orchid and has been doing shows here since 1996. He was seen earlier this season in Louis Slotin Sonata. Other AROT credits include FatBoy, Eric LaRue, The Caine Mutiny Court Martial and The Grey Zone, among others. Doug has also had the pleasure of working with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Trap Door Theatre, Hell in a Handbag Productions and many more.

David Chrzanowski (Friar Timateo) Chicago theater credits include work at: Court Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare, The Goodman, Silk Road Theatre Project, Victory Gardens, Polarity Ensemble, and 16th Street Theatre. Outside of Chicago he has worked with Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Performance Network, Kentucky and Notre Dame Shakespeare Festivals. David was instrumental in creating the "Myths to Drama" outreach program at Silk Road Theatre Project. The program introduces mythology from along the Silk Road to Chicago public schools. David wishes to dedicate his performance in loving memory of Sarah Heberlein.

Brian Kavanaugh (Siro) Recent theatre credits include, Bus Stop in the debut production from The Den Theatre, Days of Late with SiNNERMAN and Ivanov (directed by Sheldon Patinkin) with SiNNERMAN, an understudy in Old Glory at Writers' Theatre, autobahn at Profiles Theatre, Open at the Bailiwick Directors Festival, Quick and Dirty in Apple Tree Theatre's Orchard Series. In Boston he performed with a variety of improvisational comedy groups. He'll be featured as the guest star in the second episode of BADSIDES, a comedy pilot developing in Chicago.

Cheyenne Pinson (Lucrezia) makes her A Red Orchid debut with The Mandrake. Recent credits include Cyrano de Bergerac (Roxane), Buddy! The Buddy Holly Story (Maria Elena Holly), and The Diary of Anne Frank (Anne Frank). She has been honored to work with such companies as The Goodman and Steppenwolf, keeps busy with film and television work, and is a proud member of SAG and AFTRA. She studied Trumpet and Music Ed at Michigan State University before getting a degree in Theatre and continues to sing and play in several bands and musical projects around Chicago.

Lucinda Johnston (Sostrata & Woman) was recently seen as Maggie in Citadel Theatre's Jake's Women. She has also been seen performing with Remy Bumppo Theatre, American Theater Company, Metropolis PAC, Stage Left Theatre and Terrapin Theatre. Lucinda's credits also include numerous print ads, industrial films and commercials. She was also seen in the independent film Red Envelope.

About A Red Orchid
Since 1993 A Red Orchid Theatre has been an artistic mainstay of the Chicago theatre community; known and praised for its powerful ensemble, creative design and its gripping, intimate productions. The resident Ensemble maintains the conviction that passionately committed theatre will draw passionately committed audiences, and the 2009-2010 subscription season promises to bring Ensemble and audience even closer together.

A Red Orchid Theatre is: Lance Baker, Dado, Jennifer Engstrom, Kirsten Fitzgerald, Joseph Fosco, Steve Haggard, Mierka Girten, Larry Grimm, Karen Kawa, Karen Kessler, Danny McCarthy, Brett Neveu, Michael Shannon, Guy Van Swearingen, Doug Vickers, Tiffany Wilson and Craig Wright.

Title: Machiavelli's The Mandrake
Translated by: Peter Constantine
Directed by: Steve Scott
Dates: Previews: Friday, April 8; Saturday, April 9; and Sunday, April 10
Press opening: Monday, April 11 at 7:00PM
Regular Run: Thursday, April 14 - May 24, 2011
Schedule: Thurs: 8:00 p.m.
Fri: 8:00 p.m.
Sat: 8:00 p.m.
Sun: 3:00 p.m.
Location: A Red Orchid Theatre, 1531 N. Wells Ave.
Tickets: $15 previews, $25-$30 regular run. ($25 Thurs, $30 Fri-Sun)
Box Office: Located at 1531 N. Wells Ave, Chicago, (312) 943-8722; or online

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