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Crow's Theatre Presents RED VELVET Directed By Cherissa Richards

Performances run November 22 to December 18, 2022.

Crow's Theatre Presents RED VELVET Directed By Cherissa Richards

Crow's Theatre presents the Toronto premiere of Lolita Chakrabarti's multi-award-winning play, RED VELVET, directed by Crow's Theatre 2021 RBC Rising Star Emerging Director Prize recipient, Cherissa Richards, November 22 to December 18, 2002 in the Guloien Theatre.

London, 1833. No Black man has ever starred on a major London stage-not even as Othello-until tonight.

An imagined version of true events, RED VELVET transports audiences to the turbulent backstage world of London's Theatre Royal in Covent Garden to tell the little-known story of Ira Aldridge, an African-American stage actor. As British Parliament debates the abolition of slavery, Aldridge prepares to make his entrance as Othello. His groundbreaking performance upends centuries of British stage tradition and changes the lives of everyone involved.

The audience is enamoured but the critics are not amused and the Theatre Royal is temporarily shut down. Despite this, Aldridge went on to build a stellar career with an impeccable reputation throughout Europe, but he never returned to a London stage again.

The star-studded cast includes Allan Louis (The Doctor's Dilemma, Gem of the Ocean, Shaw Festival) as Ira Aldridge (full bio below); Kyle Blair (Cyrano De Bergerac, Holiday Inn, Shaw Festival) as theatre manager Pierre Laporte; Ellen Denny (Life After, for which she received a Dora nomination for Outstanding Performance, Canadian Stage) as lead actress Ellen Tree; Starr Domingue (Dixon Road, The Musical Stage Company/Obsidian Theatre Company/Canadian Stage, Room, Mirvish Productions/Covent Garden

Productions/ Grand Theatre) as Connie a domestic attendant; Nathan Howe (In The Wake of Wettlaufer, Cakewalk, Blyth Festival) as Casimir a stage hand and Henry Forrester an actor; Patrick McManus (Orphans for the Czar, Crow's Theatre, An Octoroon, Shaw Festival) as Aldridge's valet Terence, and as actor Bernarde Warde; Jeff Lillico (Sweeney Todd, Talk is Free Theatre, Fairview, Canadian Stage) as Charles Kean, the son of theatre star Edmund Kean; and Amelia Sargisson (Hamlet-911, Stratford Festival, Bad Jews, Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company) as the bright and ambitious Polish journalist Halina Wozniak, also as actress Betty Lovell, and wife of Ira Aldridge, Margaret Aldridge.

The award-winning creative team includes director Cherissa Richards (Assistant Director MixTape, Crow's Theatre, Harlem Duet, Bard on the Beach, full bio below); set and props designer Julie Fox (Uncle Vanya, MixTape, Crow's Theatre); costume designer Ming Wong (Uncle Vanya, Orphans for the Czar, Crow's Theatre); lighting designer Arun Srinivasan (MixTape, Crow's Theatre, Where the Blood Mixes, Native Earth Performing Arts/Soulpepper); and sound designer Thomas Ryder Payne (Uncle Vanya, Orphans for the Czar, Crow's Theatre).




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