Women playing men in boats. Inheritors of a new world order in which good intentions have gone dangerously sideways. A modern day sequel to Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice focusing on the forgotten middle sister. These are just some of the five regional premieres that Main Street Theater will present in its 2017-18 season being announced today.
"We can comment on what's going on in our world without being heavy handed," says Rebecca Greene Udden, Main Street's executive artistic director.
For instance, Men on Boats "brings up gender identity issues without making a big deal of it," Udden says. "Daisy is about the start of a fear mongering political campaign." Enemies is something of a sequel to The Coast of Utopia that Main Street put on a few years back as we see the Communist Revolution in full bloom with its accompanying breakdowns, Udden says.
Jane Austen has been all the rage recently since the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice in 2013 and the same anniversary for Emma in 2016. This adaptation is scheduld at the theater's family-friendly winter holiday show, Udden says.
For more on the upcoming Main Street shows:
By Maxim Gorky
September 16 – October 15, 2017
"Gorky's extraordinary play, which was written in exile and banned in his home country, presents a panoramic view of a restless society. It’s 1905, and Russia is at a critical moment in its history. The bourgeoisie is no longer confident in its own values. The working class is slowly realizing the terrifying sacrifices they will have to make. Gorky approaches this unique, imaginative play, with great humanity and a broad dramatic scope, offering a glimpse into what the world might have been like between aristocratic rule and the revolution in Russia."
Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley
By Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon
November 11 – December 18, 2017
"A sequel to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Miss Bennet is set two years after the novel ends and continues the story, this time with nerdy middle-sister Mary as the unlikely heroine. Mary is growing tired of her role as the dutiful middle sister in the midst of everyone else’s romantic escapades. When the family gathers for Christmas at Pemberley, an unexpected guest sparks Mary’s hopes for independence, an intellectual match, and possibly even love."
Men on Boats
By Jaclyn Backhaus
February 10 – March 11, 2018
"Ten explorers. Four boats. One Grand Canyon. Men on Boats is the true(ish) history of an 1869 expedition, when a one-armed captain and a crew of insane but loyal volunteers set out to chart the course of the Colorado River. Oh, and all the explorers are played by women."
By Sean Devine
March 31 – April 29, 2018
"It is the fall of 1964. With a presidential election looming, a group of advertisers working for Lyndon B. Johnson unleash the most infamous political commercial ever conceived: the “Daisy” ad. This ad played only once, but it carved a scar deep into the American psyche. Based on actual people and events, Daisy explores the power of manipulation and the moment in television history that launched the age of negative ad campaigns — and forever changed how we elect our leaders."
Daddy Long Legs
Based on the novel by Jean Webster
Music and Lyrics by Paul Gordon / Book by John Caird
May 19 – June 17, 2018
A heartwarming Cinderella story about a witty and winsome young woman and her mysterious benefactor, based on the treasured novel that inspired the classic 1955 film of the same name starring Fred Astaire. Filled with soaring melodies, sophistication, and charm, Daddy Long Legs is a “rags-to-riches” tale of newfound love.
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