|Mint Theater begins FREE Streaming of The New Morality with Christian Campbell, Clemmie Evans, Brenda Meaney, Ned Noyes & more, for 4 weeks only|
|Posted by: Official_Press_Release 06:59 pm EST 11/07/22|
|"An unabashed comedy with bite. Chapin examines not only emotional issues but also the rapidly changing role of women in Edwardian society. Jonathan Bank directs the fine cast with the right balance of thoughtfulness and silliness." – The New Yorker
"The script combines a jigger or two of Harley Granville Barker, a measure of Shaw, a dash of Wilde and stirs as needed" - The New York Times
Mint Theater Company
Continues Its Popular FREE Streaming of Past Mint Productions With
The New Morality
by Harold Chapin, Directed by Jonathan Bank
With Christian Campbell, Clemmie Evans, Michael Frederic, Kelly McCready, Brenda Meaney, Ned Noyes, and Douglas Rees
For Four Weeks Only
Closed Captioning Available!
Mint Theater Company (Jonathan Bank, Producing Artistic Director) will continue its hybrid season of live performances at NY City Center along with the on-demand streaming of acclaimed previous productions.
Beginning today, Monday November 7th, from 7pm, Mint Theater will be streaming the three-camera archival recording (filmed in HD!) of The New Morality by Harold Chapin, directed by Mr. Bank. Streaming will continue to be available through December 4th only. The price of admission is FREE. Available at Mint's virtual theater, MintTheater.org.
The New Morality was first produced in London and later in New York in 1921, five years after Chapin's death on September 26th 1915 at the Battle of Loos at the age of twenty-nine. It received another London revival in 1925. Set aboard a houseboat on a fashionable reach of the Thames in 1911, The New Morality tells the story of how the brazen Betty Jones restores dignity to her household and harmony to her marriage, by losing her temper and making a scene. "The script combines a jigger or two of Harley Granville Barker, a measure of Shaw, a dash of Wilde and stirs as needed… The writing is charming and finely observed…The direction, by the Mint's artistic director, Jonathan Bank, is appealing and apposite. The acting is adept, with particularly impressive turns by Brenda Meaney as Betty and Ned Noyes as the husband of her putative rival," declared Alexis Soloski in The New York Times.
Jonathan Bank directed a cast that featured Christian Campbell (best known for his role in the contemporary gay film classic Trick; theater credits include Jonathan Larson's tick... tick... BOOM! Off-Broadway and on the National tour and the original Los Angeles and New York productions of Reefer Madness: The Musical as well as the Showtime adaptation, Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical, opposite his sister Neve Campbell; other TV roles include Greg Ivey on HBO's "Big Love" and Richard Brune in HBO's "True Detective"); Clemmie Evans (Off-Broadway debut in The New Morality; on film she appeared opposite Cuba Gooding Jr. in Freedom; TV credits include: "Crashing" - HBO and "Louie" - FX); Michael Frederic (The Lucky One - Mint; other Off-Broadway: The Great Divorce - The Pearl Theatre, Bill W and Dr. Bob - Soho Playhouse); Kelly McCready (also made her Off-Broadway debut in The New Morality; other Off-Bway credits include The Execution of Mrs. Cotton - IRT Theatre and East Side Stories: Revolutions - Metropolitan Playhouse); Brenda Meaney (The Mountains Look Different - Mint, Little Gem - Irish Rep, Indian Ink - Roundabout; TV credits include AMC's "Hell on Wheels" opposite her father, Colm Meaney); Ned Noyes (Mint: Chains, Love Goes to Press, So Help Me God!, and The Fifth Column; Broadway credits include The Play That Goes Wrong, Cabaret, You Can't Take It With You ); and Douglas Rees (Mint: Donogoo, What the Public Wants, A Little Journey, and Mary Broome; other Off-Bway: The Show-Off – Peccadillo, Opus - Primary Stages, The Roaring Girls - The Foundry). The New Morality's creative team included Steven C. Kemp (scenic), Carisa Kelly (costumes), Christian DeAngelis (lighting), Jane Shaw (sound), Joshua Yocum (props), Judy Bowman (casting) and Amy Stoller (dialects & dramaturgy).
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
A writer of "wit, gaiety and skillful craftsmanship," the Brooklyn-born British playwright Harold Chapin (1886-1915) wrote ten one-act plays and four complete, full-length works before his untimely death in an act of heroism on the front. With Chapin's tragic early death, the British and American theater lost an already assured comic talent. The tragedy also shelved plans for Charles Frohman's Broadway production of "a new comedy" by Chapin. Announced in July 1915, this play was presumably The New Morality. London theatre critic Bennitt Gardiner, in a 1957 article for The Stage, called the little-known Chapin "one of the first comic dramatists of quality to work in our theatre after Oscar Wilde," and praised the playwright's contributions to "an unbroken tradition of satiric high comedy" stretching back to the Restoration. Dexterously blending British and American theatrical traditions—sprinkling teatime artifice with Yankee candor—Chapin's plays continue to scintillate with both mirth and matter."
Born in Brooklyn, New York, on February 15, 1886, Harold and his sister Elsie were raised by a remarkable, iconoclastic mother: the American-born actress, playwright, and feminist activist Alice Chapin (who, in 1909, spent four months in prison after pouring acid into anti-suffrage ballot boxes). When Harold was two years old, Alice scandalously divorced his father Harry Clarke, and expatriated with her son to London, where she nurtured the theatrical talents of her children. Playing young Marcus to his mother's Volumnia, Harold made his stage debut at the age of seven in Coriolanus at the Shakespeare Festival in Stratford-on-Avon. Upon graduation from University College School in 1902, Chapin devoted himself to the London theatre, where he proved himself versatile as an actor, stage manager, and producer. In 1908, Chapin joined Charles Frohman's management team at the Duke of York's Theatre, where he originated roles in plays by J.M. Barrie and John Galsworthy. (In 1909, Chapin played the role of Percy in the original production of Chains by Elizabeth Baker, which Mint produced last summer).
Starting with his debut one-act play, 1910's Augustus in Search of a Father, Chapin gained prominence as a dramatist. Chapin also started a lasting association with the actor-manager Harley Granville-Barker, whom he joined as stage manager at the Savoy Theatre. Like both Shaw and Granville-Barker, Chapin "desired to use the theatre to stimulate the desire for social reform," according to historian John Simkin. In The Marriage of Columbine (1910), Elaine (1912), Art and Opportunity (1912), and The New Morality (written c. 1911/'12), Chapin channeled the modern, independent figure of "the New Woman" through "delicious ladies" that are "seductive and contradictory and childish and cunning" (as described by J.M. Barrie).
ABOUT THE MINT THEATER COMPANY
Mint has been investing in creating professionally shot and edited full length archival videos since 2013. These videos are shot during live performances with three high-definition cameras, and edited to create a broadcast quality, intimate and enjoyable experience of Mint programming.
"Of all the countless Off-Broadway troupes with which the side streets of Manhattan are dotted, none has a more distinctive mission—or a higher artistic batting average—than the Mint Theater Company, which 'finds and produces worthwhile plays from the past that have been lost or forgotten.' If that sounds dull to you, don't be fooled: I've never seen a production there that was a sliver less than superb. Rachel Crothers's Susan and God, John Galsworthy's The Skin Game, Harley Granville-Barker's The Madras House, N.C. Hunter's A Day by the Sea, Dawn Powell's Walking Down Broadway, Jules Romains's Doctor Knock, John Van Druten's London Wall: All these fine plays and others just as good have been exhumed by the Mint to memorable effect in the 13 years that I've been reviewing the company, a tribute to the uncanny taste and unfailing resourcefulness of Jonathan Bank, the artistic director," said Terry Teachout in the Wall Street Journal. Mint was awarded an OBIE Award for "combining the excitement of discovery with the richness of tradition" and a special Drama Desk Award for "unearthing, presenting and preserving forgotten plays of merit."
Mint's Off-Broadway presentation of the American Premiere of Noël Coward's The Rat Trap, directed by Alexander Lass, plays at New York City Center Stage II (131 West 55th Street, between 6th & 7th Avenues) from November 1st through December 10th. Tickets are on sale now and may be purchased online at NYCityCenter.org, by calling 212/581-1212, or in person at the New York City Center box office located at 131 West 55th Street (between 6th & 7th Avenues).
For more information about these and other Mint productions, visit minttheater.org.
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