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Ross Valley Players Set 2015-16 Season: ANNA IN THE TROPICS & More


ROSS VALLEY PLAYERS is pleased to announce their 2015 - 2016 season which celebrates their 86th consecutive year. Among the seven plays included in the new season is a World Premiere by Bay Area Playwright Mary Spletter, a 2008 Tony Award winner for best revival of a play, a 2003 Pulitzer Prize winner, and an Ivey Award winner about a classic tale of good vs. evil. Each year, Ross Valley Players produce diverse, professional-quality live theater that evokes, entertains and enlivens the human spirit.

"We couldn't be more proud of our 86th season," said RVP Vice President and Programming Committee Chair, Mary Ann Rodgers. "We are coming off an incredible 85th anniversary season and we couldn't think of a better way to begin our next 85 than with these seven carefully selected plays. The new season will make you laugh, cry, and, hopefully, leave you with a joyful resolve to make the world a better place."

Season subscriptions are currently on sale. Prices are $155 general admission, $135 for senior 62+, and $75 for youth (18 and under) and student (with valid student ID), and include one ticket to all seven productions in the upcoming season. For more information or to purchase season tickets online visit or call 415-456-9555.

The 2015 - 2016 season includes:

The True Story of Florence Foster Jenkins, the Worst Singer in the World
By Peter Quilter
September 18 - October 18, 2015
Directed by Billie Cox

First Lady of the Sliding Scale Florence Foster Jenkins (Ellen Brooks) is the hottest ticket in town, and not for the reasons you'd think. An enthusiastic soprano with less than perfect pitch, she warbles and screeches her way through arias by Mozart and Strauss, accompanied by her trusty pianist. But this delusional and joyously happy woman pays little attention to her critics, and instead surrounds herself with devoted friends and fans nearly as eccentric as herself.

Based upon a true story, the play follows plucky Florence through charity recitals, balls, bizarre recording sessions and ultimately to her triumphant performance at Carnegie Hall. Take a journey with Florence and her pianist Cosme McMoon to rediscover the definition of passion!

The Ladies of Camellias
By Lillian Groag
November 20 - December 20, 2015
Directed by Julian Lopez-Morillas

This hilarious farce, guided by the masterful Mr. Lopez-Morillas, is about an imagined meeting between famous theater divas Eleanora Duse and Sarah Bernhardt. The Ladies will leave you begging for more. Set in 1897 in Paris, the two stars- the biggest and most temperamental of their day - are scheduled to perform back-to-back productions of the same play at the same theater. Members of both acting companies expect fireworks, and fuel is added to the fire when a young Russian anarchist named Ivan threatens to blow everyone up, including the two rival stars!

Using their only weapon - theatrical dialogue - to disarm the would be murderer, they uncover his true ambition, a unifying discovery that leads to forgiveness and transformation for all involved: "Civilization changes the world, not bombs."

The Diary of Anne Frank
Adapted by Wendy Kesselman
January 15 - February 6, 2016
Directed by James Dunn

In this transcendently powerful adaptation, Anne Frank emerges from history as a living, lyrical, intensely gifted young girl, who confronts her rapidly changing life and the increasing horror of her time with astonishing honesty, wit, and determination. An impassioned drama about the lives of eight people hiding from the Nazis in a concealed storage attic, this play captures their fear, hope, laughter, and grief.

Kesselman, using the original stage play by Goodrich and Hackett as a foundation, has interwoven newly discovered writings from the diary of Anne Frank plus survivor accounts to create a contemporary story of those persecuted by Nazi rule. A new adaptation for a new generation.

Arches, Balance and Light - World Premiere
By Mary Spletter
February 19 - March 8, 2016
Directed by Jay Manley

A World Premiere by Bay Area playwright Mary Spletter, this play was inspired by the life of Julia Morgan, California's first licensed architect. Combining fact and fiction, the piece explores an encounter between the spinster Julia Morgan and a woman who wants to know whether Julia is her mother. The answer helps us understand the daunting hurdles Miss Morgan overcame to become the architect and designer of more than 700 buildings, including Hearst Castle.

Arches, Balance and Light is Ross Valley Players 2016 Ross Alternative Work (RAW). RAW is dedicated to the staging and production of original, provocative and exciting new works by Bay Area playwrights.

Boeing-Boeing - 2008 Tony Award Winner
By Marc Camoletti, Beverly Cross and Francis Evans
April 1 - May 1, 2016
Directed by Christian Haines

This 1960's French sex farce features a self-styled Lothario, Bernard, an American architect living in Paris and balancing a very complicated love life. His three beautiful fiancées - a German, an Italian, and an American - are all airline stewardesses with frequent layovers that never overlap. His best friend Robert, a man with very little experience in the ways of women or deception, is set to arrive from Wisconsin. An unexpected schedule change brings everyone to Bernard's apartment at once. Watch as he plays a complicated game of hide-and-seek in this door-slamming comedy.

Originally presented in 1965, the play was revived and updated for American audiences in 2008. Delightful, witty, and surprisingly romantic, this masterful farce moves at the speed of a Boeing Super Jet.

Anna in the Tropics - Winner of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize
By Nilo Cruz
May 27 - June 19, 2016
Directed by Mary Ann Rodgers

Anna in the Tropics is set in Florida in 1929 in a Cuban-American cigar factory, where cigars are still rolled by hand and "lectors" are employed to educate and entertain the workers. When a new lector begins to read aloud from Anna Karenina, he unwittingly becomes a catalyst in the lives of his listeners. The novel, which explores the nature of human desire, casts a spell over the workers, transforming their own yearnings through the life-affirming power of art. Tolstoy, the tropics, and the American dream prove a volatile combination in this passionate, romantic drama.

Robin Hood - Ivey Award Winner
By Greg Banks
July 16 - August 7, 2016
Directed by Linda Dunn

Greg Banks goes medieval - with muscle. High-powered and action-packed, this is not your yeomanly tale of yore, but a lean, mean, swashbuckling machine. In the classic story of good vs. evil, trickery vs. heroism, compassion vs. greed, Robin Hood must outwit the evil Sheriff of Nottingham in his quest to steal from the rich to give to the poor. Following the folk legend more closely than either the Disney or live action Hollywood versions, Robin still falls for the beautiful Maid Marian, although the courageous heroine is every bit as plucky and loyal as the rest of Robin's merry men.

Robin Hood is recommended for the entire family. Central themes include oppression, inequality and injustice. Youth and Student Tickets are only $10 on Thursdays and $14 every other day. Discounts available on group ticket sales.

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