Photo Flash: Around the World in Eighty Days At Shakespeare Theater Of NJ

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey kicks off its 2009 Season with a world premiere stage adaptation of Around the World in Eighty Days. Adapted for the stage by Bonnie J. Monte from the beloved novel by Jules Verne, this inventive production is an exhilarating treat for people of all ages. Around the World in Eighty Days began performances on April 29 and continues through May 24 at the Shakespeare Theatre's Main Stage - The F. M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre, 36 Madison Avenue at Lancaster Road in Madison. For tickets or more information, call the box office at 973-408-5600, email boxoffice@shakespearenj.org or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.

Featuring a cast of six playing more than 30 roles, this new theatrical adaption brings to the stage the original "amazing race" that has captured the hearts and imaginations of readers for generations. "Our season, dubbed ‘Fantastic Voyages' takes our patrons on an extraordinary journey around the world and through the centuries," said artistic director Bonnie J. Monte. "We could not think of a more exhilarating way to begin this adventure than with this beloved classic tale of a race to circumnavigate the globe."

Single tickets to Around the World in Eighty Days are now on sale and range in price from $30 to $70 depending on performance day and time. Single ticket prices include a $2 facility fee not subject to discount. Patrons can save up to 45% off regular ticket prices by purchasing discount Ticket Packages and subscriptions that allow ticket buyers to select seven, five or four plays of their choice at significantly discounted prices. Ticket Packages also offer additional benefits such as discounts on additional tickets and free and flexible ticket exchange privileges. Patrons may also select FlexPasses -- discounted vouchers that are redeemed for tickets during the season. Ticket packages start at $76. To purchase tickets or ticket packages and subscriptions, call the box office at 973-408-5600, email boxoffice@shakespearenj.org or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.

Playing the role of the daring and adventurous Phileas Fogg is Robert Krakovski who returns to The Shakespeare Theatre for his third season. He most recently he appeared in the Shakespeare Theatre's production of Measure for Measure. Off-Broadway he originated the role of Bill Wilson in Bill W. He recently appeared in A Christmas Story at GEVA and has appeared in productions at Portland Center Stage, the St. Louis Shakespeare Festival, the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival as well as Hartford Stage, San Jose Rep. and the Edinburg Festival.

Playing Mr. Fogg's newly anointed valet, Monsieur Passepartout, is Kevin Isola who returns to The Shakespeare Theatre for his third season. At The Shakespeare Theatre, he most recently appeared as Edgar in King Lear. His Broadway credits include Brooklyn Boy at Manhattan Theatre Club. Off-Broadway he as appeared at Playwrights Horizons, The Public Theatre, Lincoln Center and the Cherry Lane Theatre.

Playing Detective Fix, who secretively follows the daring duo on their adventure, is Shakespeare Theatre funny-man David Foubert. Foubert has appeared at The Shakespeare Theatre in The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), The Taming of the Shrew and The Winter's Tale among others. Most recently he toured with The Acting Company in The Tempest and Moby Dick: Rehearsed.

Longtime Shakespeare Theatre Company member Edmond Genest returns to play Sir Francis Cromarty and other globe-trotting roles. Genest has appeared in more than a dozen productions at The Shakespeare Theatre including King Lear, The Time of Your Life and The Cherry Orchard. On Broadway, he appeared in The Elephant Man with Billy Crudup, A Few Good Men, The Real Thing and Whose Life is it Anyway among others. He has appeared at theatres throughout the country including Long Wharf Theatre, Pittsburgh Public Theatre and Philadelphia Theatre Company.

Longtime company member Jay Leibowitz returns to The Shakespeare Theatre after playing himself in The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) last season on The Outdoor Stage. He has also been seen at The Shakespeare Theatre in Life of Galileo, A Midwinter's Night's Dream, and Carnival among others. Along with Mr. Foubert, Leibowitz has performed William Shakespeare's Who's on First at First Night Morris. He is an award-winning independent filmmaker and songwriter and recently returned from a national tour with The Acting Company.

Following her role in The Winter's Tale last season, Maureen Sebastian returns for her fourth season. Her off-Broadway credits include Thicker Than Water's Both at Ensemble Studio Theatre, oph3lia at HERE Arts Center and Children of Vonderly at Ma-Yi Theatre Company. She has also appeared on television in Gossip Girl as and the host of Reebok Movie Nights on Oh! Oxygen Network.

Bonnie J. Monte begins her 19th Season as Artistic Director of The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey with this production. In her tenure, she has directed 41 productions for the Theatre including the critically acclaimed A Streetcar Named Desire, King Lear, A Christmas Carol, Henry V, and The Cherry Orchard. In addition to Around the World in Eighty Days, she has also created a number of original translations/adaptations for the Main Stage including Pride and Prejudice, Marivaux's The Triumph of Love, Pirandello's Enrico IV, Ostrovsky's Artists and Admirers and Maeterlinck's The Blue Bird. Prior to arriving in New Jersey, Ms. Monte was a casting director at the prestigious Manhattan Theatre Club in New York City. From 1981 to 1989, she was associate artistic director at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts, working closely with renowned artistic director Nikos Psacharopoulos. In 1982, she was part of a writing team, which included Psacharopoulos and Tennessee Williams, collaborating on an eight-hour, two-part production - Tennessee Williams: A Celebration - a retrospective tribute to Mr. Williams' entire literary canon.

Tickets to Around the World in Eighty Days are now on sale. Discount ticket packages offering a choice of 7, 5, or 4 plays at reduced prices are also available. For tickets or more information, call 973-408-5600, email boxoffice@ShakespeareNJ.org or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org. Single tickets include a $2 facility fee, not subject to discount.

For no more than the cost of a regular ticket, Symposium Series performances include the additional treat of a post-play discussion with the cast and artistic staff, on Tuesday, May 5 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, May 9 at 2:00 p.m., and Saturday, May 16 at 2 p.m.

On Thursday, May 7, The Shakespeare Theatre presents the popular education program Know the Show. From 7:00 to 7:30 p.m., artists from The Shakespeare Theatre will present a pre-performance talk that provides background information and an insider's perspective on Around the World in Eighty Days. General admission is $5 for the general public, $4 for ticket package holders. Tickets to that evening's 8:00 p.m. performance may be purchased separately for $43 or $47.

The Saturday, May 16 at 2 p.m. performance will be audio described for those who are blind or have visually impairments. Audio description enables patrons with visual impairments to hear, through an FM transmitter, a live description of the action on the stage. A pre-performance sensory seminar is offered that allows patrons to feel props, costumes and set pieces to further enhance their live theatrical experience. The service is offered free of charge. Tickets for the Saturday 2 p.m. performance are $43 and $47.

Student Matinees

In addition to regular public performances, The Shakespeare Theatre will present special Student Matinee performances of Around the World in Eighty Days for school groups. Student Matinees are at 10:30 a.m. on May 14 and May 21. Tickets to these school-time performances include a post-show discussion with the actors and a comprehensive study guide for each teacher. For Student Matinee reservations and more information, call 973-408-3980 or e-mail JBGrant@ShakespeareNJ.org

Creating the worlds of Around the World in Eighty Days are set designer Michael Schweikhart, lighting designer Bruce Auerbach, costume designer Emily Pepper and sound designer Karin Graybash. Josiane Lemieux serves as production stage manager.

Regular ticket prices range from $39 to $55 depending upon seating location and performance day and time. Opening Night tickets are $66 and $70. Single tickets prices include a $2 facility fee, not subject to discount. Groups of 10 or more save up to 25% off the regular ticket price.

American playwright's Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes follows, running June 3 through June 28. Directed by Matthew Arbour, American playwright Hellman's piece is a compelling, cautionary tale of an ambitious, turn-of-the-century Southern family torn apart by bitter disappointment, greed, and deception.

The Shakespeare Theatre brings back Shakespeare "under-the-stars" with The Tempest performed at The Theatre's Outdoor Stage - the Greek Theatre located on the campus of the College of St. Elizabeth in Morristown. Marooned on a mysterious island full of magical creatures, the magus Prospero prepares to wreak havoc on those who have wronged him, only to learn the greater value of compassion and forgiveness. This fun and mystical romance offers an opportunity for families and people of all ages to experience Shakespeare. The Tempest runs June 24 through August 2 and is directed by Joe Discher.

Moliere's The School for Wives, translated into English verse by Richard Wilbur, continues the summer season. The sparkling comedy, replete with period costumes, will be directed by Shakespeare Theatre resident director Brian B. Crowe. In The School for Wives, a pompous, middle-aged bachelor attempts to mold his ward into the perfect bride, but it is he who gets the true education as best laid plans fall prey to a determined rival suitor, a pair of inept servants and true love. Molière's celebrated comedy never fails to delight audiences.

One of the most popular back-stage comedies, Noises Off by Michael Frayn, is next running August 5 through August 30th. Quickly earning an exalted spot in the canon of classic comedies, Noises Off pulls back the curtain on a troupe of actors in rehearsal and performance for Nothing On, a ridiculously silly bedroom farce where off-stage shenanigans lead to hilarious on-stage chaos. Noises Off is directed by Paul Mullins.

Considered by many to be the greatest play ever written, Shakespeare's Hamlet takes the stage next running September 9 through October 11. Directed by Bonnie J. Monte, this production will feature a haunting and evocative soundscape featuring the voices of Harmonium Choral Society. Broadway veteran Gareth Saxe returns to The Shakespeare Theatre to play Hamlet, the Prince of Denmark.

Adapted by Frank Galati from the epic novel by John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath runs October 21 through November 21. The story of Tom Joad and his family's flight from the Dust Bowl of Oklahoma during the Great Depression is a majestic and deeply affecting portrait of American life and the American soul at a defining moment in our nation's history. The production is directed by Joe Discher.

Closing the season is Shakespeare's Twelfth Night running December 2 through January 3, 2010. Directed by Bonnie J. Monte, Twelfth Night is a shimmering confection - delightfully tart, ravishingly bittersweet and spectacularly frothy all at once. It is a joyous show for the holidays and for families of all ages.

For more information about the season, call 973-408-5600, email boxoffice@ShakespeareNJ.org or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey's Main Stage, the 308-seat F.M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre, is conveniently located in Madison at 36 Madison Avenue (Route 124) at Lancaster Road (on the Drew University campus), just minutes from routes 287, 78 and 10. Parking is free. The Outdoor Stage is located at the Greek Theatre on the campus of the College of St. Elizabeth in Morristown. The F.M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre is barrier free with access into the Theatre via a ramp and elevator access to all floors. Wheelchair seating and transfer seating is available. Braille and large print programs are available. Infrared listening devices are available free of charge. Some performances are audio described, captioned and sign-language interpreted. Contact the theatre for more information. For more information, or to purchase tickets, call 973-408-5600, email boxoffice@ShakespeareNJ.org or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.

Photos by Gerry Goodstein.

 

Photo Flash: Around the World in Eighty Days At Shakespeare Theater Of NJ
Robert Krakovski and Kevin Isola

Photo Flash: Around the World in Eighty Days At Shakespeare Theater Of NJ
Edmond Genest, Maureen Sebastian, Kevin Isola, David Foubert, and Robert Krakovski

Photo Flash: Around the World in Eighty Days At Shakespeare Theater Of NJ
Maureen Sebastian, Kevin Isola, David Foubert, and Robert Krakovski

Photo Flash: Around the World in Eighty Days At Shakespeare Theater Of NJ
Kevin Isola, Edmond Genest, David Foubert and Robert Krakovski



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