Casting has been announced for The Liar, David Ives’s “translaptation” of Pierre Corneille’s 1643 farce of the same name, according to Ed Rutherford, the Promethean Theatre Ensemble artistic associate who is directing the production. The title character, Dorante, a charming young man who cannot tell the truth, will be played by Josh Hambrock. Dorante’s love interest Clarice (who he believes to be named Lucrece, the name of her friend who will be played by Katherine Schwartz) will be played by ensemble member Meghann Tabor.
Dorante’s confusion over the names of Lucrece and Clarice becomes problematic when Dorante’s father Geronte (to be played by Michael Hagedorn) tries to arrange a marriage between Dorante and Clarice, who is secretly engaged to Alcippe (Shane Roberie). Joshua Servantez has been cast as Alcippe’s friend Philiste. Isabelle and Sabine, the saucy twins who are maids to Clarice and Lucrece, will both be played by artistic associate Megan DeLay. Cliton, a manservant who cannot tell a lie, will be played by ensemble member Brendan Hutt. Understudies are Kat Bramley (Lucrece) and Jared Dennis (Dorante).
Rutherford’s production team includes Jeremy Hollis (set and props designer), Gary Nocco (costume designer), Eric Vigo (lighting designer), Ben Sutherland (sound designer), and ensemble members Brendan Hutt (fight choreographer) and Alexa Berkowitz (stage manager).
In his adaptation, David Ives has updated Corneille’s language in a version that scintillates with comedic wit. The Liar tells the story of Dorante, a young man newly arrived in Paris who wastes no time beginning his search for love and adventure, primarily through the spinning of extremely tall tales. As his tangled web of deception gets more and more complex and difficult to maintain, Ives uses Corneille’s text to explore the layers of seeming and identity that we weave around ourselves to get through the day. Promethean’s production will be designed to get the engine of farce at the heart of the play humming along smoothly, with sharp and precise language and sincere but high stakes performances, so that the audience can sit back and revel in the joyful chaos of the play.
Ives’s play premiered at the Shakespeare Theatre Company of Washington, DC in 2010 and has since enjoyed productions at prestigious theaters around the country, including Writers Theatre (Glencoe, IL), Westport Country Playhouse (Westport, CT), Artists’ Repertory Theatre (Portland, OR) and most recently, Classic Stage Company (New York, NY). The Chicago Tribune’s Chris Jones said Ives’ new script “is an uncommonly droll take on what was always a very smart and well-crafted play …and full of genuinely funny puns, pronouncements and posturing.”
by David Ives
directed by Artistic Associate Ed Rutherford
Athenaeum Studio 2, 2936 N. Southport Ave., Chicago
April 21 – May 27, 2017
Previews April 21 – April 28
Press opening April 29 at 7:30 pm
Regular run April 30 through May 27, 2017
Thursdays - Saturdays at 7:30 pm, Sundays at 2 pm.
Industry performance Monday, May 8 at 7 pm
Atheneaum Box Office Phone: 773-935-6875
David Ives (Playwright) is an American playwright, screenwriter, and novelist. He is best known for writing verse adaptations of 17th century plays and other works, in which his contribution is considerable, and for his adaptations of musicals for the New York City Center Encores! series, as well as for his comic one-act plays; the New York Times in 1997 referred to him as the "maestro of the short form." Ives has also written dramatic plays, narrative stories, and screenplays.
Ives' breakthrough play was All in the Timing, an evening of six one-act plays that premiered at Primary Stages off-Broadway in 1993, moved to the larger John Houseman Theatre, and ran for 606 performances. Ives followed it withDon Juan in Chicago, The Red Address, Mere Mortals and Others, Polish Jokeand The Blizzard. His translation of Georges Feydeau's farce, A Flea in Her Earwas produced at Chicago Shakespeare in 2006, and won the Joseph Jefferson Award for "new adaptation". His play, Is He Dead? adapted from an "unproduced 1898 comedy" by Mark Twain, ran on Broadway from December 2007 to March 2008. New Jerusalem, concerning the excommunication of Baruch Spinoza, opened Off-Broadway in January 2008.
In 2011 his version of Molière's The Misanthrope premiered Off-Broadway at Classic Stage Company under the title, The School for Lies. Also in 2011 his adaptation of Jean-Francois Regnard's Le Legataire universel premiered at the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C. under the title, The Heir Apparent. The Heir Apparent opened Off-Broadway in March 2014. Venus in Fur opened Off-Broadway in January 2010 and premiered on Broadway in October 2011.
He is collaborating with Stephen Sondheim on a new musical, still untitled, based on two of the films of Luis Buñuel. It is set to premiere in 2017.
Ed Rutherford (Director) For Promethean, Ed Rutherford directed Brecht’sThe Caucasian Chalk Circle, his own world premiere adaptation of the Peter S. Beagle fantasy novel The Last Unicorn, and the company’s inaugural production of Christopher Durang’s Beyond Therapy. Recently, he also directed the Midwest Premiere of the musical Coraline and the musical Goblin Market. Also an actor, Ed appeared in Promethean’s productions of The Illusion and Six Characters in Search of an Author, and has worked with Drury Lane Oakbrook, Porchlight, Theater Wit and many others. He is currently pursuing his MBA at Kellogg.