Axis Theatre Will Present WASHINGTON SQUARE, a New Adaptation of Henry James' Tragicomic Novella
Axis Theatre Company presents Washington Square, a contemporary take on Henry James' tragicomic novella. Adapted and directed by Axis Theatre's founder and Artistic Director Randy Sharp, the production features original music by Paul Carbonara, a cast of four, and is performed in the heart of Greenwich Village, a few blocks from the story's 19th-century setting. Previews for Washington Square begin on March 11 at Axis Theatre (1 Sheridan Square, Manhattan), with a press opening set for March 15, for a limited run through April 11, 2020. Tickets are on sale now at axiscompany.org.
Washington Square centers on Catherine Sloper, a wealthy young woman raised in a house of grief by a father bitterly dead to love. Surrounded by society and family who perceive her as plain and soft-spoken, Catherine remains steadfastly committed to her forward-thinking optimism. When Morris Townsend, a mysterious suitor, makes a bid for her heart, Catherine is torn between following her instincts or heeding the warnings of her cruel father and persistent aunt.
While the novel is set in a fashionable New York home during the late 19th century, Sharp's radical interpretation strips away all of the excess of the time period to deeply focus on Catherine's journey into becoming her own person. This sparse, actor-focused design heightens the psychological underpinnings of the story, building tension as the play hurtles towards its inevitable conclusion.
For Sharp, Washington Square is filled with timely questions, "Is Catherine Sloper's inherited position in society a merit worthy of love? Is it not worth every bit her mother's beauty, cleverness, and charisma, the qualities her father tells her she failed to inherit? In a world where people have walked from crowns for love, is it a sin to be loved for one?"
The cast for Washington Square features George Demas as The Doctor, Britt Genelin as Catherine, Jon McCormick as Morris Townsend, and Dee Pelletier as Penniman.
The creative team for Washington Square includes Karl Ruckdeschel (costume design), David Zeffren (lighting design), Lynn Mancinelli (prop design), Erik Savage (production stage manager), Marc Palmieri (dramaturgy), Brian Barnhart (producing director), and Jeffrey Resnick (executive director).
Sixteen performances of Washington Square will take place March 11-April 4 at Axis Theatre, located at 1 Sheridan Square in Manhattan's West Village. General admission tickets are $30 for adults, $20 for seniors/students, and $10 for artists and people under 30. The first ten tickets to every performance are available for $10. Performances are FREE for veterans and active U.S. service members and their families. Tickets can be purchased online at axiscompany.org.