DAVID IVES – THE PANTIES, THE PARTNER AND THE PROFIT: Scenes from the Heroic Life of the Middle Class

David Ives (The Liar, The Heir Apparent, The Metromaniacs, and The School For Lies) will return to Shakespeare Theatre Company (STC) to collaborate with Artistic Director Michael Kahn during his final season at STC. The world premiere of The Panties, The Partner and The Profit: Scenes from the Heroic Life of the Middle Class will play at the Lansburgh Theatre (450 7th Street NW) from December 4, 2018–January 6, 2019.

Inspired by the epic pre-World War I trilogy of German playwright Carl Sternheim—Die Hose, Der Snob, and 1913—Ives sharpens his celebrated wit to razor-like social commentary to devise The Panties, The Partner and The Profit: Scenes from the Heroic Life of the Middle Class and promises to deliver an evening filled with satire and silliness—panties falling, dueling pistols going off, brunch being eaten and other signs of near-apocalypse.

Transporting the audience from Boston in 1950 to Wall Street in 1986 to lavish Malibu today will be Julia Coffey, last seen at STC in The Merchant of Venice; Carson Elrod, currently playing Dromio of Syracuse in STC’s The Comedy of Errors; Kimberly Gilbert recently seen at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company in The Arsonists; Kevin Isola from the Broadway production of Brooklyn Bay; Turna Mete from New York’s The Parable Conference and Soldier X and Tony Roach, returning to work with David Ives after his roles in The Metromaniacs and The Liar.

“What a great gift it is to be headed back into a rehearsal room with the incredible Michael Kahn after all the fun we’ve had together on the French plays,” said David Ives. “Carl Sternheim was a master of satire in the age of German Expressionism and I’ve admired his work since college, but it was his trilogy of plays about the Mask family that really intrigued me. Over the course of three generations, the Masks go from being basically The Honeymooners to being Lives of the Rich and Famous. Like all writers of social comedy from Aristophanes to Shaw, Sternheim saw that the world was in a parlous state. That sounds pretty American to me.”

THE DIRECTOR

Artistic Director Michael Kahn’s final production with Shakespeare Theatre Company will be The Oresteia, written by Ellen McLaughlin. It will play at Sidney Harman Hall from April 30-June 2, 2019 and will close the season.

Since 1986 he has directed a wide variety of Shakespearean and classical works including last season’s production of Hamlet featuring Michael Urie. His other productions include The School for Lies, The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound, The Metromaniacs, a repertory of Henry IV, Part 1 and Part 2, Wallenstein, The Government Inspector, Strange Interlude, The Heir Apparent, Old Times, All’s Well That Ends Well, The Liar, Richard II, The Alchemist, Design for Living, The Way of the World, and many more. Having brought international works like Headlong’s 1984, The National Theatre of Scotland’s Dunsinane and The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart and Théâtre de l’Atelier’s Les Liaisons Dangereuse to the theatre, Kahn continues to demonstrate the versatility and relevance of STC’s theatre programming with this season’s productions. In 1991, he created the Free For All, which brings an STC production to audiences completely free of charge every year. In addition to leading STC, he is also the founder of the Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University and the former Richard Rodgers Director of the Drama Division at Juilliard. Since the 1960s, Kahn’s work has been seen by audiences across the country and the world: in New York City, both on Broadway and Off-Broadway, as well as at both the American Shakespeare Theatre and the McCarter Theatre where he served as Artistic Director concurrently. In 2003, STC performed his production of The Oedipus Plays at the Athens Festival in Greece, where it received standing ovations and critical acclaim. In the summer of 2006, the Company took Kahn’s production of Love’s Labor’s Lost to the Royal Shakespeare Company’s “Complete Works Festival” in Stratford-upon-Avon. Kahn was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2013 and has been recognized as an Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE).

THE CAST

Returning to STC is Julia Coffey* (Trudy Reezner/Sybil Rittenhouse/Omega Rittenhouse) STC: PericlesThe Beaux’ StratagemThe Merchant of Venice. NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: Perfect ArrangementLondon Wall (Drama Desk Nomination); The Widowing of Mrs. Holroyd (Drama League Nomination). REGIONAL: Olney Theatre: Labour of Love; Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival: Richard II (Richard II); Studio Theater: Hedda Gabler (Hedda)Baltimore Center Stage: As You Like It (Rosalind); Barrington Stage: ThisAbsurd Person Singular; ACT: Arcadia, Maple & VineOnce in a Lifetime; Guthrie: Tales from Hollywood; Chicago Shakespeare Theater: Romeo and Juliet (Juliet).

 Most recently seen at STC in The Comedy of Errors, Carson Elrod* (Joseph Mask/Joseph Mask/Joe Jones). STC: The Comedy of Errors, The Heir Apparent. NEW YORK: Broadway: Peter and the Starcatcher, Reckless, Noises Off. Off-Broadway: Manhattan Theatre Club: Comic Potential, House and Garden, Based on a Totally True Story, Explorer’s Club, Important Hats of the 20th Century; New York Theatre Workshop: Cavedweller; NYSF/Delacorte Theatre: Measure For Measure, The Tempest, All’s Well That Ends Well; Theatre for a New Audience: Oliver Twist; Primary Stages: All in the Timing, Lives of the Saints. REGIONAL: Williamstown Theatre Festival, La Jolla Playhouse, Baltimore Center Stage, Bay Street Theatre, Barrington Stage, American Repertory Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Center Theatre Group, Shakespeare and Company. OPERA: Metropolitan Opera: The Merry Widow (directed by Susan Stroman). FILM: Wedding Crashers, The Weekend, Kissing Jessica Stein TELEVISION: Deadbeat, High Maintenance, 30 Rock, Person of Interest, Elementary, Law and Order: CI. AWARDS: Emery Battis Award; Lucille Lortel Nominations; Drama League Nominations. OTHER: #FairWageOnStage. TEACHING: STC Affiliated Teaching Artist, Williamstown, New York University: Grad Acting. TRAINING: New York University: Grad Acting: MFA; University of Kansas: BA; Upright Citizens Brigade; People’s Improv Theatre; iOWest. WEB: CarsonElrod.com.

Returning to STC for his eighth production with the company is Tony Roach* (Jock Revere/William Hamilton/Jack Revere).  STC: Seven productions including David Ives’s The Liar and The Metromaniacs, The Importance of Being Earnest, All’s Well That Ends Well. NEW YORK: Broadway: My Fair Lady (Henry Higgins), Bright Star. Off-Broadway: TACT: She Stoops to Conquer; Classic Stage Company: The Liar; Primary Stages: The Men (workshop). REGIONAL: Includes: Hartford Stage; Goodspeed Opera House, American Repertory Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse, Shakespeare St. Louis, Dorset, The Kitchen Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare. FILM: Walk the Line, Miles From Nowhere, The Adventures of Buckskin Jack. TELEVISION: The Affair, Elementary. TRAINING: ART/MXAT Institute at Harvard: MFA; Columbia University: BA.

Making their STC debut are:

 Kimberly Gilbert*(Louise Mask) REGIONAL: Ford’s Theatre: Born Yesterday, Jefferson’s Garden; Folger Theatre: The Winter’s Tale; Round House Theatre: The Book of Will, Angels in America; Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company: The Arsonists, Women Laughing Alone With Salad; Studio Theatre: Three Sisters/No Sisters, Jumpers for Goalposts; Taffety Punk; Theatre J; Denver Center. AWARDS: Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Lead Actress for Marie in Marie Antoinette (Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company). TRAINING: STC’s Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University: MFA.

Kevin Isola*(Benjamin Mandelshtam/Christian Mask/Rabbi Mandelshtam) NEW YORK: Broadway: Brooklyn Bay. Off-Broadway: Signature Theatre, NYSF/Public Theater, Second Stage, Playwrights Horizons, Lincoln Center, The Play Company, The Transport Group, The Women’s Project, Cherry Lane Theatre, 59E59. REGIONAL: Guthrie Theatre, McCarter Theatre Center, South Coast Repertory, Yale Repertory, Two River Theater, Old Globe, Baltimore Center Stage, Hudson Theatre. FILM: Miles, Blumenthal, Frank the Rat, How the Grinch Stole Christmas. TELEVISION: Billions, Bull, The Blacklist, Elementary, Deadbeat, The Family, Smash, Fringe, Damages, Boston Legal, Law and Order, The Summer of Ben Tyler (Hallmark Hall of Fame), Viva Variety. TRAINING: NYU Graduate Acting Program: MFA.

Turna Mete*(A Young Woman/Milly Hamilton/Ursula Mask) NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: BAM: The Parable Conference; Ma-Yi Theater Company: Soldier X;  The Flea: Office Hours, Looking at Christmas, The Great Recession; Ensemble Studio Theater: Asking For Trouble. REGIONAL: Huntington Theatre Company: The Who and the What; American Theater Group: The Way We Get By; Tantrum Theater: Into the West; Theater Workshop of Nantucket: The 39 Steps, Time Stands Still. FILM: Hiding in the Open, How He Fell in Love, Completely Normal. TELEVISION: Small Miracles, Deadbeat. WEB: TurnaMete.com.

 

THE DESIGNERS

Following his work on The School For Lies and The Liar, Tony Award-nominated Scenic Designer Alexander Dodge returns to STC again to collaborate with Ives and Kahn. STC: Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2, Measure for Measure, The Heir Apparent, The Liar, The Dog in the Manger. NEW YORK: Broadway: Anastasia, 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: 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: La Jolla Playhouse / Paper Mill Playhouse, Tokyo and Berlin: Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame; London’s West End, Manchester and Glasgow: All New People. OPERA: L.A. Opera: The Ghosts of Versailles; Minnesota Opera: Dinner at Eight, Cosi Fan Tutti; Deutsche Oper Berlin: Il Trittico; Würzburg: Der fliegende Holländer; Hungarian State Opera-Budapest: Lohengrin. TELEVISION: Julie’s Greenroom starring Julie Andrews (Netflix).  TRAINING: Yale School of Drama.

Frank Labovitz, a Helen Hayes Award-winning Costume Designer. REGIONAL: Studio Theatre: Vietgone, Wig Out!, Cloud 9, The Torch Song Trilogy; Signature Theatre: Girlfriend, La Cage aux Folles, West Side Story, The Threepenny Opera, Dreamgirls; Ford’s Theatre: The Glass Menagerie; Woolly Mammoth Theatre: Guards at the Taj, The Totalitarians, You For Me For You, Mr. Burns: a post electric play, Gruesome Playground Injuries; Round House Theatre: The Legend of Georgia McBride, Caroline, or Change, NSFW, The Beauty Queen of Leenane, Ordinary Days, Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo; Olney Theater Center: In The Heights; Pointless Theatre Co: The Rite of Spring, Doctor Caligari, Sleeping Beauty: a Puppet Ballet. AWARDS: 2013 Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Costume Design, multiple Helen Hayes Award nominations. TRAINING: University of Maryland: MFA in Costume Design.

Nancy Schertler (Lighting Designer)  STC: Troilus and Cressida (Helen Hayes nomination), Twelfth Night (Helen Hayes nomination), The Winter’s Tale (Helen Hayes nomination), Romeo and Juliet (Helen Hayes nomination). NEW YORK: Broadway: Freemont Associates: Fool Moon, (dirs. Bill Irwin and David Shiner), Largely New York (dir. Bill Irwin, Tony nomination); Off-Broadway: Laura Pels International: Hilda, (dir. Carey Perloff); Signature Theatre: The Regard Evening (dir. Bill Irwin); Classic Stage Company: Texts for Nothing (dir. Bill Irwin). REGIONAL:  American premieres include: American Conservatory Theatre: After the War, The Difficulty of Crossing a Field, The Colossus of Rhodes, (dir. Carey Perloff); Arena Stage: Tom Walker, Lovers and Executioners (dir. Kyle Donnelly), The Kennedy Center: Barrio Grrl, (dir. Peter Flynn); Philadelphia Theatre Company: The Happiness Lecture, (dir. Bill Irwin); Seattle Repertory: The Sisters Matsumoto (dir. Sharon Ott). OPERA: University of Maryland: Shadowboxer, Later the Same Evening, and Clara (commissioned and produced by the Maryland Opera Studio under the direction of Leon Major). AWARDS: Recipient of the 2018 Anderson- Hopkins Award for Excellence in the Theatre Arts in recognition of her work in the Washington, D.C. theatre community.

 Elisheba Ittoop (Sound Design/Original Music) Her designs and original music have been heard at The Kennedy Center, Guthrie Theater, The Public Theater, Manhattan Theatre Club, New York Theatre Workshop, Steppenwolf Theatre, Signature Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, National Gallery of Art, Soho Rep, Huntington Theatre, Denver Center, Two River Theater, Women’s Project, Triad Stage, Woolly Mammoth, Arena Stage, Alliance Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse, Cleveland Playhouse, LaMaMa, 59E59, Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, Bonnaroo Music Festival, Okeechobee Music Festival, and the Center for Puppetry Arts. Elisheba was a resident sound designer at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center for the 2010 and 2011 National Playwrights Conferences, recipient of the Kenan Fellowship at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and winner of the 2008 USITT Rising Star Award. Education: NYU, North Carolina School of the Arts. www.elishebaittoop.com

Rounding out the artistic team are Assistant Director Craig Baldwin, Production Stage Manager Joseph Smelser, Assistant Stage Manager Josie R. Felt, Voice and Text Coach Lisa Beley, Casting Directors Jay Binder, CSA & Carter C. Wooddell, and Dramaturg Drew Lichtenberg.

The production is sponsored by the Robert and Arlene Kogod Family Foundation and commissioned through a grant from the Beech Street Foundation. The production restaurant partner is La Tasca

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