From Phoenix to Elsinore, with a stop in St. Louis, the Tampa Repertory Theatre's second season promises to engage audiences with plays new and old, but always provocative, innovative and classic.
The season opens with a regional premiere: Phoenix, by Scott Organ. First seen at the prestigious Humana Festival of New American Plays in 2010, this unusual two-character romantic comedy sparkles with witty banter yet, as Erin Keane noted in the Louisville Courier-Journal, the play "asks tough questions about the purpose of life and what we should risk to truly live it." Connie Lamarca-Frankel, who staged the Rep's critically-acclaimed production of Cold Storage, directs. The production opens on October 11th and plays through the 28th.
The second production, coming in January, will be The Glass Menagerie, featuring Emilia Sargent as Amanda. Artistic Director C. David Frankel (who will also direct Menagerie) notes that "a cornerstone of Tampa Rep's mission is a focus on American classics, and after last season's A Streetcar Named Desire, we thought it would be exciting to explore the Tennessee Williams' canon over several years." He added that playing Amanda, another of Williams' iconic characters, will provide Sargent, who gave a "luminous" performance as Blanche in Streetcar, another challenging role and audiences a chance to see another side of the performer. Menagerie runs from January 10th to the 27th.
For the final production, Tampa Rep will join forces with Hat Trick Theatre productions for a co-production of Hamlet, featuring Jack Holloway in the title role, with Frankel directing. The cast, still developing, will include Ned Averill-Snell as Claudius, Jim Wicker as Old Hamlet's Ghost and the Player King, and, among others, Hat Trick actors Jon Cho, Paul McColgan, Gi Sung, and Steve Fisher. Hamlet opens on April 25th and runs until May 12th.
All productions will take place in the Studio Theatre at HCC Ybor City, and will run Thursdays through Sundays. Tickets prices remain $20 for adults, $15 for students, seniors, and military personal and can be purchased at www.tamparep.org.
TRT2, the Rep's "incubator" company, also returns for a second year with another installment Tampa Wrights: New One-Act Plays by Tampa Playwrights and a revised and extended version of their first show, Musings of a "Postmodern" Romantic, by local writer Christopher Hawthorne. Tampa Wrights will take place in early February and the redone Musings in late March - the exact dates and venues are in the works.
The Tampa Repertory Theatre ranges across the full spectrum of theatre history to present plays that still speak to the extraordinary conditions of today. Whether new or old, a Tampa Rep production will be provocative, innovative, and classic.