Photo Flash: THE RIVALS At Seattle Shakespeare Company
Duels, dandies, deceptions, and dudes with daddy issues stir up a comic frenzy in Richard Brinsley Sheridan's witty gem The Rivals at Seattle Shakespeare Company. George Mount directs the production which begins previews on Jan. 7, opens Jan. 10 and runs through Feb. 2 at the Center Theatre at Seattle Center.
"The Rivals is just a delightful confection of fun," said Artistic Director George Mount at the first rehearsal for the production. "There are so many people that are either actively deceiving people or who are in self-deception mode, that they are not really fully aware of who they are."
In The Rivals romance novels have given young (and wealthy!) Lydia Languish some ridiculous notions, and she insists on marrying a poor man for the sake of true love. Hoping to woo the young heiress, Captain Jack Absolute pretends to be a poor army officer. Aiding and thwarting Jack's pursuit are a collection of comic characters including his cranky father, Sir Anthony, Lydia's meddling and misspoken aunt, Mrs. Malaprop, and a pair of adversaries: the jovial Bob Acres and the salty Sir Lucius O'Trigger.
The layers of comic deception in the play led Mount and his design team to create a twist to the story that involves both the original setting in the 1780s and the 1980s. "In the 80s, there was this sub fashion moment in which those baroque stylings came back," said Mount. "Think of the song 'Rock Me Amadeus' or Adam Ant's colonial soldier jackets, or even Madonna's MTV Awards performance of 'Vogue' all decked out as Marie Antoinette. We'll have some anachronistic costume choices along with some fun baroque music combinations but played on synthesizers or electronic instruments."
Making their Seattle Shakespeare Company debut in The Rivals are Avery Clark as Captain Jack Absolute and Alexandria Henderson as Lydia Languish. Joining them in the cast are Julie Briskman as Mrs. Malaprop, Mike Dooly as Sir Lucius O'Trigger, Bradford Farwell as Sir Anthony Absolute, and Lamar Legend as Bob Acres.
Set design for the production is by Craig B. Wollam, costume design by Doris Black, lighting design by Roberta Russell, and sound design by Robertson Witmer.
Tickets to The Rivals are available now through the Seattle Shakespeare Company Box Office at 206-733-8222 as well as online at www.seattleshakespeare.org.
Photo Credit: John Ulman.
Alexandria J. Henderson and Avery Clark
Shanna Allman and Brandon Felker
Alexandria J. Henderson and Sophia Franzella
Alexandria J. Henderson and Jocelyn Maher
Sophia Franzella and Mike Dooly
Calder Jameson Shilling and Jocelyn Maher