Westport Country Playhouse's Joe Orton's LOOT Begins Tonight

Westport Country Playhouse's Joe Orton's LOOT Begins Tonight

Westport Country Playhouse will stage the British farce, "Loot," a wickedly funny send-up of larcenous, lascivious behavior among the English middle classes, written by Joe Orton and directed by David Kennedy, Playhouse associate artistic director, playing from tonight, July 16 through August 3. The play won the coveted Evening Standard Award for Best Play in 1967.

"'Loot' is one of the most amazing comedies ever written," said Mark Lamos, Playhouse artistic director. "Its continuing popularity is a testament to the undimmed brilliance of a young writer whose comedies of unruly bad manners rivaled those of the greatest English masters, including Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw, and Noel Coward."

Set in mid-1960s London, "Loot" follows the fortunes of two young thieves, Dennis, who works for an undertaker, and Hal, whose Mum has just died. They rob the bank next door to the funeral home and hide the loot in Mum's coffin, displacing Mum whose body keeps re-appearing at the most inopportune times. When Inspector Truscott turns up, the already thickened plot goes topsy-turvy.

The cast include John Horton (Westport Country Playhouse's "The Circle," "Otherwise Engaged"; Broadway's "Anything Goes," "Noises Off," "Amadeus") as McLeavy; David Manis (Broadway's "War Horse," "The Coast of Utopia," "The Rivals," "Henry IV," "Arcadia," "Abe Lincoln in Illinois") as Truscott; Devin Norik (Off-Broadway's "Unnatural Acts," for which he won a Rosemarie Tichler Award; regional theater including "The Lion in Winter") as Hal; William Peden (Westport Country Playhouse's "Tartuffe"; regional theater including "The Great Gatsby" as Tom Buchannan) as Meadows; Liv Rooth (Westport Country Playhouse's "Suddenly Last Summer," Script in Hand playreading "Dial 'M' for Murder"; Broadway's "Venus in Fur," "Born Yesterday," "Is He Dead?"; Off-Broadway's "All in the Timing") as Fay; and Zach Wegner ("Hot Steams" at 45 Bleecker, "God Steeling" at Theatre 54, "The Skin of Our Teeth" at Bristol Riverside) as Dennis.

Playwright Joe Orton (1933-1967) was born in Leicester, England. After winning a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, Orton was the rising star of an "alternative British intelligentsia." He also wrote the plays "Entertaining Mr. Sloane" and "What the Butler Saw."

Director David Kennedy helmed Westport Country Playhouse's "Tartuffe," "Suddenly Last Summer," "Beyond Therapy," and "Dinner with Friends," since joining The Playhouse as associate artistic director in 2009. He previously worked with Dallas Theater Center where he directed "The Misanthrope," "Glengarry Glen Ross," "Moonlight and Magnolias," "I Am My Own Wife," among others. He was a founding artistic director of The Lunar Society in Toronto and Milkman Theatre Group in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and was artistic director of the Summer Cabaret in New Haven. Kennedy is a former Phil Killian Fellow at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, a Drama League Directing Fellow, and a graduate of the Yale School of Drama.

The design and production team includes Andrew Boyce (Westport Country Playhouse's "Twelfth Night"; New York and regional Theater Productions) scenic design;Emily Rebholz (Westport Country Playhouse's "Dinner with Friends"; New York's "Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson") costume design; Matthew Richards (Westport Country Playhouse's "Tartuffe," "Suddenly Last Summer," "Dinner with Friends"; Broadway's "Ann") lighting design; Fitz Patton (Westport Country Playhouse's "Tartuffe," "Suddenly Last Summer," "Dinner with Friends"; Broadway's "I'll Eat You Last," with Bette Midler; 2010 Lucille Lortel and Drama Desk Awards) sound design and original music; Michael Rossmy, fight director; Dana Tanner-Kennedy, dramaturg; Deborah Hecht, vocal and dialect coach; Carianne Hoff, props master; Matthew Melchiorre, resident stage manager; Ed Herman, assistant stage manager; and Tara Rubin Casting.

Playing tonight, July 16 - August 3, the performance schedule for "Loot" is Tuesday at 8 p.m., Wednesday at 2 and 8 p.m., Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 3 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. Special series feature Taste of Tuesday, Previews, LGBT Night OUT, Opening Night, Sunday Symposium, Open Captions, Literary Salon, Thursday TalkBack, Together at the Table Family Dinner, Playhouse Young Professionals, and Backstage Pass.

Single ticket prices, starting at $30, are subject to change based on availability. Buy early for the best prices. Educators and students are eligible for 50% discounts. On the day of a performance, senior rush tickets are available at 50%.

"Loot" Production Partners are Eunice and David Bigelow Foundation, and Michael Klingher and Lindsay Schine. Corporate Production Partner is BNY Mellon Wealth Management.

Westport Country Playhouse's 2013 Season will continue with the second world premiere in as many seasons, "Oblivion," a touching and funny-and very modern-tale of parents, children, and the gulf that sometimes exists between them, written by Carly Mensch, a writer for three seasons on Showtime's "Weeds," and directed by Mark Brokaw, August 20 - September 8. The play was commissioned by Playwrights Horizons and developed by Steppenwolf Theatre Company. "Room Service" is a madcap American farce about a producer and his ragtag bunch of actors who try to raise money for a Broadway show as they scramble to evade their hotel bill, written by John Murray and Allen Boretz, directed by Mark Lamos, October 8 - 27.

Traditional subscriptions continue on sale offering savings, best available seating, restaurant discounts, and patron flexibility, including a choice of five-play or seasonal four-play subscriptions. Flex Passes are also on sale, offering date flexibility and many subscriber-only benefits.

For more information or tickets, call the box office at (203) 227-4177, or toll-free at 1-888-927-7529, or visit Westport Country Playhouse, 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport. Tickets are available online 24/7 at www.westportplayhouse.org, or by using the new Playhouse App or mobile website. Stay connected to The Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), follow on Twitter (@WCPlayhouse), view Playhouse videos on YouTube (WestportPlayhouse) or get an insider's peek on The Playhouse Blog (www.theplayhouseblog.org).

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