Cleveland Play House
Also see David's review of The Pianist of Willesden Lane
The Cleveland Play House (CPH) will celebrate its 100th season in 2015-2016. Each year, more than 90,000 people experience over 500 performances, education programs, and engagement events. Many talented performers have acted on the stages of the CPH: Jane Krakowski, Jesse L. Martin, Alan Alda, Henry Fonda, Madeline Kahn, Edward Asner, Margaret Hamilton, and others. Joel Grey and Paul Newman learned their craft as children in the theatre classes.
Laura Kepley, Artistic Director, recently announced that each show in the 2015-2016 season would reflect Cleveland in some way. The first show in the season will be the world premiere of Ken Ludwig's A Comedy of Tenors (September 5 through October 3, 2015). Ludwig 's play The Game's Afoot debuted in Cleveland several seasons ago.
The second show will be Arthur Miller's The Crucible (October 10 through November 8, 2015). During the run of this show, the CPH will celebrate Miller's 100th birthday during the theatre's 100th birthday season.
The Christmas season in Cleveland would not be complete without a production of A Christmas Story (November 27 through December 23, 1015). Phil Grecian wrote the script based on the movie, which was written by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown, and Bob Clark. This show promises the excitement of a pink bunny-suit, glowing leg-lamp and, of course, triple-dog-daring.
The new year opens with Little Shop of Horrors (January 9 through February 7, 2016). This script was written by Howard Ashman (book and lyrics) and Alan Menken (music). Puppets were used in many of the CPH's early productions. For this production the stage will be filled with a vicious, growing puppet.
The Mountaintop, written by Katori Hall, takes place on April 3, 1968, in the Lorraine Motel, Room 306. This is a story of Martin Luther King, Jr. and a motel maid. She challenges his beliefs and his work. It plays January 23 through February 14, 2016.
Luna Gale by Rebecca Gilman will play February 27 through March 20, 2016. In this script, Gilman deals with issues of parenthood, faith, and love. Luna Gale is the baby daughter of a couple challenged by a social worker to do the right thing as they raise their child.
Mr. Wolf is a new play by Rajiv Joseph, a Cleveland native. In this play, a daughter goes missing and the family is devastated. Mr. Wolf runs April 2 through 24, 2016.
The season closes with Robert Harling's classic Steel Magnolias. In Truvy's beauty salon the motto is simple: "There is no such thing as natural beauty."
However, in the 2015-2016 season, audiences will find beauty (some natural and some produced by the theatre's technicians) on the stages of the Cleveland Play House. For more information, telephone 216-400-7000 or visit clevelandplayhouse.com.
- David Ritchey