Becky Sharp never blushes. As the wily Becky and her gentle friend Amelia scale social ladders and hurdle the whims of fate, only one question matters: how do you get what you want in life? A bright dance hall pageant poking fun at all our pretenses, this new adaptation harnesses the frivolity of Thackeray’s novel while recasting its (anti) heroines as complex, vibrant women, delivering “a gift to actors and a goody bag for its audience” (The New York Times). Acclaimed playwright Kate Hamill (Sense and Sensibility, The Wall Street Journal’s Playwright of the Year 2017) brings her signature quick wit and distinctly unfussy retelling of classic work to one of literature’s most celebrated novels.
From the Playwright
Like so many of us, I’m in love with the classics and the universality of the stories they tell. But I have to say, it’s hard sometimes to see women constantly relegated to tertiary characters. So often, women are only playing the wives and the girlfriends and the prostitutes of the hero on his journey. I believe very deeply that women’s stories are universal stories, and that we can connect as deeply with a female protagonist as we can with a male protagonist.
The women of Vanity Fair are complex and very different people – but their approach to the patriarchal rules of their world is sometimes flawed, sometimes admirable, and altogether human. I was particularly interested in how Becky and Amelia are punished both for breaking the rules and for obeying the rules; for having ambition and for not having ambition; for having agency and for not having agency. The system is designed to keep them down, and the only way they can overcome it is to bond together. So in the end, this is also a story about deep female friendship.
This is one of the few stage adaptations that’s ever been done of Vanity Fair because it’s a grand and gorgeous novel on an epic scale – about 1600 pages – and it really requires a theatre that’s willing to take on those giant stories, that’s eager to examine how they’re still universal and why they still matter. Lucky for us, Shakespeare Theatre Company is one of those places.
All titles, artists and dates subject to change.
NEW YORK: The Pearl Theatre Company: A Taste of Honey; Irish Repertory Theatre: The Burial at Thebes. REGIONAL: Signature Theatre: Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing; Westport Country Playhouse: The Liar; Yale Repertory Theatre: Arcadia (Connecticut Critics Circle Award, Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play); Actors Theater of Louisville: Our Town; American Conservatory Theater: Arcadia, Dead Metaphor (World Premiere), A Christmas Carol, Elektra (with Olympia Dukakis), Happy To Stand; California Shakespeare Theater: Romeo and Juliet, Blithe Spirit; The Children (The Gift Theatre); Kingsmen Shakespeare Company: Winter’s Tale, Comedy of Errors. FILM: Bridge Of Spies (with Tom Hanks, directed by Steven Spielberg), The Chaperone. Television: Divorce, The Knick, The Mysteries of Laura, The Slap, Jessica Jones. TRAINING: Rince na Tiarna School of Irish Dance, American Conservatory Theater: MFA and Sadler Award. OTHER: LU4TC! WEB: RebekahBrockman.com
NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: The Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park: Julius Caesar. REGIONAL: Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park: Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley; Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival: Rip Van Winkle or Cut the Old Moon into Stars; Santa Cruz Shakespeare: The Merry Wives of Winsor, As You Like It, The Beard of Avon; New Swan Shakespeare Festival: Hamlet, As You Like It. TELEVISION: AmEx Commercial, Ikea Commercial. OTHER: Workshops: JAGFest: the journey between by Korde Arrington Tuttle; Sol Project’s SolFest: Bees and Honey by Guadalís Del Carmen; LAByrinth Barn Series; New Plays Now at Northern Stages: Citrus. TRAINING: University of California, Irvine: MFA in Acting. WEB: www.Maribel-Martinez.com; IG: @instamarbles
STC: King Charles III (James Reiss); REGIONAL: American Conservatory Theater: The Birthday Party, Hamlet, Ah, Wilderness!, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, The Cherry Orchard, The Rivals; Berkeley Repertory Theatre: Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, Dinner With Friends; Yale Repertory Theatre: Father Comes Home from the Wars; The Huntington Theatre: The Way of the World, Mary Stuart; California Shakespeare Theatre: As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Man and Superman, Nicholas Nickleby; Arizona Theatre Company: The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Dirty Blonde; San Jose Repertory Theatre: A Flea in Her Ear, This Wonderful Life; Marin Theatre Company: Othello, Anne Boleyn; TheatreWorks: Upright Grand, The Twentieth Century, The 39 Steps; Ford’s Theatre: Picasso at the Lapin Agile (Helen Hayes Award nomination).
REGIONAL: Berkeley Repertory Theatre: Macbeth; Marin Theatre Company: Shakespeare in Love, The Legend of Georgia McBride, Native Son, Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberly, The Whale; San Francisco Playhouse: Stupid Fucking Bird; Shotgun Players: Dry Land; Cutting Ball: Uncle Vanya. TRAINING: Foothill Theatre Conservatory, Seydways Studios.
NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: Light Shining in Buckinghamshire (New York Theatre Workshop, dir. Rachel Chavkin), Othello (starring Daniel Craig and David Oyelowo, dir. Sam Gold), Dessert (dir. Whitney White), The Artificial Jungle, Agatha Christie's The Unexpected Guest (Theatre Row). NATIONAL TOURS: The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Doug Panch). REGIONAL: Henry V (Hartford Stage), Nike, or We Don’t Need Another Hero (A.C.T. San Francisco), The Penalty (The Public), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Queens Theatre), All The Rats & Rags (Joe's Pub). FILM: Mapplethorpe (starring Matt Smith, Tribeca FF), Anomaly, Pop Meets The Void. TELEVISION: Broad City, Homeland, The Knick, Half Life (Pilot).
NYC: Broadway: Thomas The Tank Engine Live Onstage; Off-Broadway: LaMama: Agamemnon, REGIONAL: Roundhouse Theatre: How I Learned to Drive, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Helen Hayes Award, Best Lead Actress in a Play), Becky Shaw; Woolly Mammoth Theater Company: Gloria, Botticelli in the Fire; Kennedy Center: Digging Up Dessa; Mosaic Theater: The Return; Olney Theater Center: Fickle: A Fancy French Farce, Bad Dog (Helen Hayes nomination, Outstanding Ensemble); Ford's Theater: Come From Away (Helen Hayes nomination, Best Supporting Actress in a Musical; Helen Hayes Award, Outstanding Ensemble); Imagination Stage: The Night Fairy; Folger Theater: RICHARD III; No Rules Theater Company: Late: A Cowboy Song, Stop Kiss; Studio Theater: Contractions; Theater J: The History Of Invulnerability; Baltimore Center Stage: The Container; American Shakespeare Center: more than 30 productions including 15 of Shakespeare’s canon. FILM: Kringle Time (2019). TRAINING: M.F.A. Academy for Classical Acting, Shakespeare Theater.
REGIONAL: American Conservatory Theatre: A Walk on the Moon (Irv/Ensemble), Hamlet (Guildenstern), A Christmas Carol (Thomas); San Francisco Playhouse: Washed up on the Potomac (Mark). TRAINING: American Conservatory Theatre: MFA in Acting; Le Moyne College: BA in Theatre. OTHER: Orson Welles/Shylock—A Docu-Fantasy Radio Play (Orson Welles) with The Shylock Project in Venice, Italy; Montreal Fringe Fest, Toronto Fringe Fest, and Franklin Stage Company.
Kate Hamill is an actor / playwright, specializing in female-centered, feminist adaptations of the classics. Playwright of the Year, 2017 – Wall Street Journal. Her plays include Sense and Sensibility (in which she originated the role of Marianne) - Winner, Off-Broadway Alliance Award; Nominee, Drama League Award (Best Revival); 265+ performances off-Broadway. Other plays include Vanity Fair (in which she originated the role of Becky Sharp; Nominee, Off-Broadway Alliance Award), Pride and Prejudice (in which she originated the role of Lizzy Bennet; WSJ Critic’s Pick, Best Theater of 2017 – Huffington Post) In the Mines (Sundance Lab semi-finalist), Em (Red Bull New Play finalist), Little Fellow (O’Neill semi-finalist). Additional acting credits include: The Seagull (Bedlam; "best classical productions of 2014" - WSJ) Cyrano (Amphibian Stage), Dreams of A West Texas Marsupial Girl (PearlDamour), Three Mutants (PearlDAmour) Upstairs (New School), Separation Rapid (Chenango River Theatre), Walk Two Moons (Theatreworks), Good Person of Szechwan; The Nameday Party (Columbia Stages), and numerous independent films. Her plays have been produced off-Broadway with Primary Stages, Bedlam, and with the Pearl Theatre Company; at A.R.T., the Guthrie Theatre, Seattle Rep, PlayMaker’s Rep, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Dallas Theater Center, Folger Theatre (8 Helen Hayes Award nominations; Winner, best production - S&S) & others. Current productions running at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Arvada Center, & more. She is currently working on new adaptations of Mansfield Park, Little Women, and The Odyssey, as well as several new original plays - including Love Poem, In the Mines, and Prostitute Play. She was one of 2016’s top 20 most-produced playwrights; Sense and Sensibility was one of the top 10 most-produced plays. http://www.kate-hamill.com
Acting Credits: NEW YORK: Broadway: Anything Goes, Butley, The Odd Couple, The Smell of the Kill, Design for Living, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Grease. Off Broadway: Crimes of the Heart, The Country Club, June Moon, Tenderloin, Babes in Arms. REGIONAL: Huntington Theatre Company, Mark Taper Forum, Geva Theatre, McCarter Theatre Center, Williamstown Theatre Festival (10 Seasons). TELEVISION: Regular and guest-starring roles on CBS, NBC, ABC, Hulu. FILM: Work with Ang Lee, M. Night Shyamalan, Kevin Bacon, among others. Directing credits: NEW YORK: Assistant / Associate director on and Off-Broadway to Nicholas Martin, Joe Mantello, David Warren, and Christopher Ashley. REGIONAL: Williamstown Theatre Festival: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum; The Old Globe; Huntington Theatre Company; Two River Theatre Company; among others. Productions include Barefoot in the Park, Dancing at Lughnasa, Bad Dates, Ken Ludwig’s Robin Hood! (World Premiere), Ripcord, Bad Jews, Arms and the Man, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Charlotte’s Web, June Moon, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Absurd Person Singular.
NEW YORK: Broadway: Beetlejuice; Off-Broadway: Roundabout Theatre Company: The Robber Bridegroom (Astaire Award, Lortel Best Revival); The Public Theater: Into the Woods (Assistant Director / Choreographer). REGIONAL: Disney Creative Entertainment: Beauty and the Beast, Tangled (World Premiere); Two River Theatre: Dancing at Lughnasa; Bucks County Playhouse: Spelling Bee; Philadelphia Theatre Company: Found; The Denver Center: The Twelve; Westport Country Playhouse; Goodspeed Opera House; TheatreWorks; The Maltz Jupiter; Northern Stage; Mint Theater Company. NATIONAL TOURS: Kennedy Center / Madison Square Garden: ELF; The Magic School Bus (Director). OTHER: Spent a year on Broadway as a dancing rug. TRAINING: University of Cincinnati, College Conservatory of Music: BFA. WEB: ConnorGallagher.com.
STC: The Panties, The Partner and The Profit; The School for Lies; Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2; Measure for Measure; The Heir Apparent; The Liar; The Dog in the Manger. NEW YORK: Broadway: Anastasia (Outer Critics Circle Award Nomination), A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards Nominations), Present Laughter (Tony Award Nomination), Old Acquaintance, Butley, Hedda Gabler; Off-Broadway: Vineyard and Minetta Lane: Harry Clarke; Manhattan Theatre Club: Ripcord; Second Stage: Lips Together Teeth Apart, Modern Terrorism, All New People, Trust, The Water’s Edge; Playwrights Horizons: Rapture Blister Burn, Maple and Vine; Roundabout Theatre Company: The Understudy; Public Theater: Measure for Pleasure, Paris Commune; Lincoln Center: Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Toward The Somme (Lucille Lortel Award), Chaucer in Rome. INTERNATIONAL: Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame for the La Jolla and Paper Mill Playhouses, also Tokyo and Berlin; All New People for London’s West End, Manchester and Glasgow. OPERA: Metropolitan Opera: Samson et Dalila; L.A. Opera: The Ghosts of Versailles; Minnesota Opera: Dinner At Eight, Cosi Fan Tutti; Deutsche Oper Berlin: Il Trittico; Hungarian State Opera-Budapest: Lohengrin. TELEVISION: Julie’s Greenroom starring Julie Andrews for Netflix. TRAINING: Yale School of Drama.
STC: Affiliated Artist; Twelfth Night, The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Merchant of Venice, Richard II, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra, Tamburlaine, Richard III. NEW YORK: Broadway: Sweat. Off-Broadway: Shakespeare in the Park: Love’s Labour’s Lost; Public Theater: Sweat, Tiny Beautiful Things; Playwrights Horizons: Aubergine; Signature Theatre: Dance and the Railroad; Primary Stages: Happy Now?. REGIONAL: Washington National Opera: La Boheme; Studio Theatre: Bachelorette, Venus in Fur; Glimmerglass Opera: Candide; Old Globe: The Last Goodbye; McCarter Theatre Center: The How and the Why; Williamstown Theatre Festival: Six Degrees of Separation; Yale Repertory Theatre: The Winter’s Tale, dance of the holy ghosts; Berkshire Theatre Festival: Waiting for Godot; Chautauqua Theater Company: The Winter’s Tale. TRAINING: Yale School of Drama: MFA.
NEW YORK: Broadway: The Price, Stephen King’s Misery, Romeo and Juliet, Dead Accounts, Grace, Godspell, The Normal Heart, Reasons to Be Pretty, Butley, The Real Thing, Dinner at Eight, Betrayal. Off-Broadway: The Public Theater, Manhattan Theatre Club, Second Stage Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, MCC Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Theatre for a New Audience, Vineyard Theatre, Atlantic Theater Company. Regional: Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Goodman Theatre, Center Theatre Group, Guthrie Theater, La Jolla Playhouse, McCarter Theatre, Huntington Theatre Company, American Repertory Theater, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Theme Park: Frozen at Hyperion Theater, Disney California Adventure Park. Music Festivals: Site Lighting Director for Bonnaroo, Outside Lands, and Grandoozy. OTHER: numerous projects including Michelin Star award-winning Cote NYC. AWARDS: Three Lucille Lortel Awards (Guards at the Taj, Through a Glass Darkly, Rodney’s Wife); LA Ovation Award (Venice); Drama Desk nomination (Small Fire); seven American Theatre Wing Hewes Design Award nominations. WEB: DavidWeinerDesign.com.
NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: Mint Theater Company: The Price of Thomas Scott; Playwrights Horizons: I Was Most Alive With You; Manhattan Theatre Club: Actually; Theatre for a New Audience: Measure for Measure, The Killer; National Black Theatre: Blood; Rattlestick Playwrights Theater / The Women's Project: Ironbound; Repertorio Español: In the Time of the Butterflies; New York Theatre Workshop: Red Dog Howls. REGIONAL: Hartford Stage: Engagement Party, Rear Window; Capital Rep: Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley; Cleveland Play House: Sweat; Triad Stage: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Northern Stage: Oslo, Dear Elizabeth; Williamstown Theatre Festival: The Closet; The Old Globe: The Wanderers; Mark Taper Forum: Water by the Spoonful; Two River Theater: El Coqui Espectacular and the Bottle of Doom; Cincinnati Playhouse / Milwaukee Repertory Theater: Jane Eyre; Hudson Valley Shakespeare Theater; The General from America; Tantrum Theater: Caroline or Change; Arena Stage: Intelligence; Asolo Rep: 4000 Miles; Dorset Theatre Festival: Whipping Man; Denver Center: The Catch. INTERNATIONAL: International Festival (Edinburgh, Scotland): Windup Bird Chronicles. AWARDS: Drama Desk, Connecticut Critics Circle, Henry Award, Bessie Award, Premios ACE 2012, NEA / TCG Career Development Grant, Meet the Composer Grant. Member of USA 829, TSDCA. TRAINING: Harvard University; Yale School of Drama: MFA in Sound Design / Sound Engineering.
NEW YORK: Broadway: The Light in the Piazza (Artios Award nomination), Lennon, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Taking Sides (co-cast). Off-Broadway: True Love, Floyd Collins, The Monogamist, A Cheever Evening, Later Life. REGIONAL: American Conservatory Theater: Men on Boats, Sweat, Hamlet, A Thousand Splendid Suns, The Hard Problem, King Charles III, John, Arcadia, Stuck Elevator, The Orphan of Zhao, Napoli!, Endgame, Play; Intiman Theatre; Seattle Repertory Theatre; California Shakespeare Theater; Berkeley Repertory Theatre; Yale Repertory Theatre; Goodman Theatre; Steppenwolf Theatre Company; The Old Globe; American Repertory Theater. Film, television, and radio credits include Cosby, Tracey Takes On New York, The Deal, Advice from a Caterpillar, The Day That Lehman Died (Peabody, SONY, and Wincott awards), and “T” Is for Tom (Tom Stoppard radio plays, WNYC and WQXR). She also cast LifeAfter, a GE Theater podcast.
STC: Romeo and Juliet (mainstage and 2018 Free For All); Camelot; Waiting for Godot (child casting); Noura; Hamlet; Twelfth Night; The Lover and The Collection; Othello (2017 Free For All); The School for Lies; Macbeth; King Charles III; The Secret Garden; The Tempest (2016 Free For All); The Taming of the Shrew; 1984 (children); Othello; The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound; Kiss Me, Kate; Salomé; A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2015 Free For All); Tartuffe; Dunsinane (supernumerary); Man of La Mancha; The Metromaniacs (STC and Old Globe); The Tempest; As You Like It; The Winter’s Tale (2014 Free For All); The Merry Wives of Windsor; Two Gentlemen of Verona; Much Ado About Nothing; The Merchant of Venice; ReDiscovery Reading Series. Other Casting Experience (McCorkle Casting, Ltd.): NEW YORK: Broadway: End of the Rainbow, High; Off-Broadway (partial): Tribes, Our Town, The Acting Company, Freud’s Last Session, A Perfect Future, The Irish Curse, An Error of the Moon; NYC Other: Lincoln Center Institute: Hamlet, Fly, Sheila’s Day. NATIONAL TOURS: The Acting Company, Riverdance. REGIONAL: Alley Theatre, Center Stage, Barrington Stage Company, The Broad Stage, Contemporary American Theater Festival, Crossroads Theatre Company, George Street Playhouse, Guthrie Theater, Pittsburgh Public Theater, TheaterWorks Hartford. RADIO: BBC Radio: The Piano Lesson. TELEVISION: Sesame Workshop: The Electric Company, Pilot: 27 East. FILM: Premium Rush (Columbia Pictures), Junction (Choice Films). TEACHING: Guest Lecturer at Rutgers University, BFA and MFA acting students.
STC: Romeo and Juliet (mainstage and 2018 Free For All) Camelot; Noura; Hamlet; Twelfth Night; The Lover and The Collection; The School for Lies; Macbeth; King Charles III; The Secret Garden; The Taming of the Shrew; Othello; The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound; Kiss Me, Kate; Salomé; Tartuffe; Man of La Mancha; The Metromaniacs; The Tempest; As You Like It; Private Lives; Henry IV, Part 1 and 2; The Importance of Being Earnest; A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum; Measure for Measure; Coriolanus; Wallenstein; Hughie; A Midsummer Night’s Dream; The Government Inspector; The Merry Wives of Windsor; The Servant of Two Masters; Strange Interlude; The Two Gentlemen of Verona; Much Ado About Nothing; The Heir Apparent. NEW YORK: Broadway: Roundabout: Time and the Conways (dir. Rebecca Taichman). REGIONAL: Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company: The Arsonists (German translation/Text Consultant); STC/ McCarter Theatre Center: The Winter’s Tale; Center Stage: Caroline or Change, Cyrano, Around the World in 80 Days; Yale Repertory Theatre: Lulu (dir. Mark Lamos); Williamstown Theatre Festival: The Front Page, The Physicists, The Corn Is Green; New York Shakespeare Festival: Macbeth (dir. Moisés Kaufman). INTERNATIONAL: National Theatre: Salomé, Les Blancs (dir. Yaël Farber). OTHER: Yale School of Drama: Tarell McCraney’s In the Red and Brown Water (U.S. premiere); TEACHING: Catholic University of America; Eugene Lang College at the New School. TRAINING: Yale School of Drama: MFA in Dramaturgy and Dramatic Criticism.
REGIONAL: Signature Theatre: Freaky Friday (World Premiere, Bridgett Carpenter/Tom Kitt/Brian Yorkey); Guthrie Theater: A Christmas Carol; The Road Theatre Company: John Gabriel Borkman: An American Adaptation; Hollywood Fringe Festival: Wolfgirls (Best of Fringe Award). OTHER: Private Coaching for film, television, theatre, individuals, corporations: communication and presentation skills, accent modification, accent acquisition; Workshop Development: Guthrie Theater Company, Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum: Speaking on Stage; Member: Voice and Speech Trainers’ Association. TEACHING: University of Maryland: School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies (Assistant Professor, Voice and Acting); CalArts; Stella Adler Academy Los Angeles; Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts; Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama; Royal Central School of Speech and Drama; University of Washington (PATP); University of Minnesota (Guthrie Theater BFA Program). TRAINING: Royal Central School of Speech and Drama: MFA (Voice Studies); Linklater Voice Designation; Certified Colaianni Speech Practitioner.
REGIONAL: STC: Midsummer Night’s Dream (tour to Macau Arts Festival), Kiss Me Kate (extension stage manager) Seattle Repertory Theatre: Two Trains Running (co-production with Arena Stage), Luna Gale, Romeo and Juliet, Jitney, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Great Gatsby, Clybourne Park, Doubt, The Road to Mecca, Private Lives. Seattle Children’s Theatre: Go, Dog. Go!, Getting Near to Baby, The Hundred Dresses; South Coast Repertory: Glengarry Glen Ross, Prelude to a Kiss, She Stoops to Folly, Holy Days. Seattle Children’s Theatre, 5th Avenue Musical Theatre Company. INTERNATIONAL: Singapore Festival of the Arts with South Coast Repertory: Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, Misalliance; Edinburgh International Festival and Sadler’s Wells Theatre (London) with Pacific Northwest Ballet. OPERA: Seattle Opera: Wagner’s Ring Cycle (1995, 2000-2013), An American Dream, Don Carlos, Lohengrin, Tosca, Lucia di Lammermoor, and many more; BALLET: Pacific Northwest Ballet: The Four Temperaments, Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Jardí Tancat, Lambarena, In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, and many more. TRAINING: College of Marin and California State University at Long Beach: BA in Theatre Arts.
STC: The Panties, The Partner and The Profit. REGIONAL: Studio Theatre: If I Forget, Vietgone, Wig Out!; Theatre J: Becoming Dr. Ruth; The Second City: Twist Your Dickens; Mosaic Theater: Satchmo at the Waldorf; American Conservatory Theater: A Christmas Carol, Love and Information, Mr. Burns: A Post-Electric Play. TRAINING: University of Maryland, College Park: BA in Stage Management.