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THE CHEKHOV PROJECT Comes to South Pasadena Theatre Workshop

The Seagull and The Cherry Orchard will be performed in repertory.

By: May. 30, 2023
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South Pasadena Theatre Workshop presents the highly ambitious undertaking of performing two classic plays by Anton Chekhov: The Seagull and The Cherry Orchard. Both productions aim to celebrate the philosophical power of Russian literature while spotlighting a local community of versatile actors in repertory fashion. Set at the dawn of the Twentieth Century and featuring an ensemble of nineteen actors, The Chekhov Project, will run weekends from June 22nd to August 6th. Sydney Walsh directs the Los Angeles premiere of Dakin Matthew’s adaptation of, The Seagull. Sam Cass directs Tom Stoppard’s searing adaptation of, The Cherry Orchard, alongside, Kila Packett, as assistant director.

Chekhov’s first great comedy, The Seagull, invites audiences to a lakeside dacha, an estate, where a distinguished actress and her woeful writer son confront familial dependency and neglect. Passions and jealousies arise when his lover gives her heart to his rival; who happens to be a successful dramatist and his mother’s intimate companion. Blending absurdist humor, a touch of melancholy, and an eccentric cast of characters, this play explores first drafts, failures, artistic pursuits, and our human desire to live an exceptional life.

The Seagull cast: SPTW Artistic Director and co-founder, Sally Smythe as Arkadina, Clay Wilcox as Sorin, Sam Cass as Treplev, Cordelia Dewdney as Nina, Andrew Tippie as Trigorin, Fiona Rose Dyer as Masha, Kila Packett as Shamrayev, Chrsitina Conte as Paulina, Kevin Michael Doran as Dorn, and Nick Apostolina as Medvenko. Understudy for Nina: Alessandra Manon.

Written months before his untimely death in 1904, Chekhov’s final masterpiece, The Cherry Orchard, infuses farcical and sobering elements to tell the tale of an aristocratic family forced to sell their country estate in order to overcome humiliating debt. The matriarch and owner of a vast cherry orchard denies multiple warning signs while coping with grief and the impending sale of her beloved childhood home. Meanwhile, a family friend and businessman has his own ideas of how to divide the land which comes at an ultimate cost. Regarded as an audience favorite, The Cherry Orchard, illuminates the postulation of change in a society on the brink of uncontrollable revolution.

The Cherry Orchard cast: Sally Smythe as Ranevskaya, Lawrence Novikoff as Gaev, Michaela Ivey as Anya, Roshni Shulka as Varya, Hossein Mardani as Lopakhin, Kevin Michael Moran as Piskchik, Anthony Adu as Trofimov, Ben Michaels as Yepikhodov, Lauren Vogel as Dunyasha, Nick Apostolina as Yasha, Christina Conte as Charlotta, and Robert Cesario as Firs.

Producing team: Stephen Godwin and Sally Smythe. Lighting Design: Leigh Allen. Scenic Design: Clay Wilcox. Sound Design: Nick Foran. Dramaturgy: Kila Packett. Stage Manager: Kellie Hageman. The South Pasadena Theatre Workshop is located at 1507 El Centro Street, South Pasadena, CA 91030.

Previews for The Seagull: Thursday June 22 and Friday June 23 at 7pm.
Opening night: Saturday June 24 at 5pm. Performances run Fridays July 7, 14, 21, 28, and August 4 at 7pm. Sunday July 2 at 5pm. Sundays July 9, 16, 23, and August 6 at 7pm.

Previews for The Cherry Orchard: Wednesday June 28 and Thursday June 29 at 7pm. Opening night: Friday June 30 at 7pm. Performances run Saturdays July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, and August 5 at 5pm. Sundays July 9, 16, 23, and August 6 at 2pm.

Tickets start at $25, and information can be found on their website:www.SouthPasadenaTheatreWorkshop.


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