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2010/11 Press Releases
Arden Theatre Company Announces 2010/11 Season
Arden’s seven play season includes three world premieres
May 13, 2010

Philadelphia, PA - Arden Theatre Company proudly announces the seven productions, featuring three world premieres, that comprise its 2010/11 season:

  • Ghost-Writer, a world premiere by Michael Hollinger
  • The Threepenny Opera by Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill
  • The Borrowers by Mary Norton, adapted by Charles Way
  • A Moon for the Misbegotten by Eugene O’Neill
  • Superior Donuts by Tracy Letts
  • Wanamaker’s Pursuit, a world premiere by Rogelio Martinez
  • The Flea and the Professor, a world premiere musical by Jordan Harrison with
  • music by Richard Gray, based on the story by Hans Christian Andersen
“Our 2010/11 season includes an exciting variety of thought-provoking and inspiring stories from some of the greatest storytellers of all time – Eugene O’Neill, Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill, and Hans Christian Andersen – alongside current voices from the American stage – Michael Hollinger, Tracy Letts, Rogelio Martinez, and Jordan Harrison,” said Arden’s producing artistic director Terrence J. Nolen. “We are proud to bring classic plays to life on our stage, while introducing our audiences to new, imaginative stories that we have nurtured through our new play development process.”

Kicking off the season will be the world premiere of Michael Hollinger’s Ghost-Writer. This play marks Hollinger’s first new work since Opus, which premiered at the Arden in 2006 before an acclaimed Off-Broadway run and has become one of the top produced plays in American regional theatre. Also premiering at the Arden will be two newly commissioned works, including the Arden’s first commission for children’s theatre, Jordan Harrison and Richard Gray’s new musical adaptation of The Flea and the Professor based on Hans Christian Andersen’s final tale. Also commissioned for 2011 is Rogelio Martinez’s Wanamaker’s Pursuit, which will be part of the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts, a city-wide celebration of collaboration and creativity inspired by the Kimmel Center.

In addition to presenting exciting new work, the Arden has also developed a reputation for reinventing the classics. In the coming season, the Arden will produce the Donmar Warehouse version of The Threepenny Opera and A Moon for the Misbegotten featuring Grace Gonglewski as Josie and Eric Hissom as Jim Tyrone.

The Arden will also produce the Philadelphia premiere of Tracy Letts’ Superior Donuts, directed by Ed Sobel, who served as dramaturg on the original and subsequent Broadway productions of Superior Donuts and August: Osage County. Sobel, formerly the director of New Play Development at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre, joined the Arden staff as Associate Artistic Director in 2009.

In addition to the world premiere musical The Flea and the Professor, the Arden will produce the Philadelphia premiere of The Borrowers, adapted by Charles Way and based on Mary Norton’s beloved novels, during the holiday season as part of Arden Children’s Theatre.

Subscriptions for the 2010/11 season are now available. Prior to the announcement of the Arden’s mainstage plays, over 3,600 patrons took a “Leap of Faith” to subscribe to the 2010/11 season, a testament to the commitment of the Arden’s audiences. Subscriptions can be ordered by calling the Arden Box Office at 215.922.1122 or online at www.ardentheatre.org. Single tickets go on sale September 1, 2010.

Details for the Arden’s 2010/11 Season are as follows:

Ghost-Writer
A new play by Michael Hollinger
Directed by James J. Christy
On the Arcadia Stage
September 9 – October 31, 2010
Opening night: Wednesday, September 15 at 7pm
Novelist Franklin Woolsey dies mid-sentence, but his secretary Myra continues to take dictation. Attacked by skeptics, the press and Woolsey’s jealous widow, Myra sets out to prove she is more than just an artful forger. Is she trying to steal Woolsey’s legacy now that she cannot have his love, or might she truly possess a gift the world can’t understand?

The Threepenny Opera
Play with music after John Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera, in Three Acts
Music by Kurt Weill
German translation by Elisabeth Hauptmann; adaptation and lyrics by Bertolt Brecht
English translation of dialogue by Robert MacDonald
English translation of lyrics by Jeremy Sams
Directed by Terrence J. Nolen
On the F. Otto Haas Stage
September 30 – November 7, 2010
Opening night: Wednesday, October 6 at 7pm
Who is the greater criminal: he who robs a bank or he who founds one? Mack the Knife is on the prowl through London’s most virtuous whores and upstanding thieves in this raucous, outrageous, and salacious musical. Conspire with some of Philadelphia’s favorite actors as they stab, scheme and steal their way into Brecht’s saucy script and Weill’s smoky score. 

The Borrowers
By Mary Norton, adapted by Charles Way
Directed by Whit MacLaughlin
On the F. Otto Haas Stage
December 1, 2010 – January 30, 2011
Opening night: Saturday, December 4 at 7pm
Meet Arietta. She’s your typical tween yearning to experience the grownup world. Only difference? She and her tiny family live on doll house furniture under the floorboards. When their home is discovered, they are forced into the giant universe outside and Arietta gets a bigger adventure than she bargained for.

A Moon for the Misbegotten
By Eugene O’Neill
Directed by Matt Pfeiffer
On the Arcadia Stage
January 6 – March 6, 2011
Opening night: Wednesday, January 12 at 7pm
Two lost souls catch a glimpse of happiness in the moonlight. The newly lit fire within them seems strong enough to withstand a lifetime of disappointment and regret, but will it still be flickering when the cold dawn breaks? One of America’s master storytellers at the height of his powers, O’Neill creates a mythic tale of old sins and the redemptive power of love.

Superior Donuts
By Tracy Letts
Directed by Edward Sobel
On the F. Otto Haas Stage
March 3 – April 3, 2011
Opening night: Wednesday, March 9 at 7pm
The neighborhood, the donut shop and Arthur have all gone to pot.  When young Franco Wicks busts in with fresh dough and even fresher dreams, Arthur can no longer pretend he doesn’t care.  Tracy Letts, author of the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning August: Osage County, turns up the comedic heat on a man and a community grappling with change.

Wanamaker’s Pursuit
A new play by Rogelio Martinez
Directed by Terrence J. Nolen
On the Arcadia Stage
Part of the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts, inspired by the Kimmel Center
March 31 - May 29, 2011
Opening Night: Wednesday, April 6 at 7pm
Paris, 1911. A world on the brink of change. Young Nathan Wanamaker arrives in search of stock for the family department store and instead finds Paul Poiret and the first truly fabulous party of the 20th century. Surrounded by Poiret’s extravagances, Stravinsky’s music and Picasso’s art, Nathan soon finds himself having to make the difficult choice of what he must bring back to Philadelphia and what he must leave behind.

The Flea and the Professor
By Jordan Harrison
Music by Richard Gray
Lyrics by Jordan Harrison and Richard Gray
Based on the story by Hans Christian Andersen
Directed by Anne Kauffman
On the F. Otto Haas Stage
May 4 – June 12, 2011
Opening Night: Saturday, May 7 at 7pm
A young professor meets a flea. That’s right. A flea. They become the best of friends, establish a circus act, and set off to tour the world. Shipwrecked on a desert island, our show biz heroes encounter pirates, puns, and a cannibal princess. Inspired by the last story from the author of The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling, and The Emperor’s New Clothes, this new musical odyssey celebrates the excitement of the unknown.


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Reviewing members of the press are invited to all opening nights and may reserve tickets through Leigh Goldenberg at lgoldenberg@ardentheatre.org.

Arden Theatre Company is located at 40 North 2nd Street in the heart of Old City, Philadelphia.

Founded in 1988, Arden Theatre Company is dedicated to bringing to life the greatest stories by the greatest storytellers of all time. We stage five productions each season as part of our mainstage series and two productions through Arden Children’s Theatre, the city’s first resident professional children’s theatre program. We create and produce new work through our new-work development program, the Independence Foundation New Play Showcase. The Arden Professional Apprentice program trains future theatre leaders, and our theatre classes through Arden Drama School teach children and teens about the craft of making plays. Our access program, Arden for All, makes our work available to the entire community through subsidized tickets and books for economically disadvantaged young people. We also offer sign language-interpreted, captioned and audio described performances and Pay-What-You-Can final dress rehearsals that benefit other nonprofits.

The Arden has received six Philadelphia Magazine “Best of Philly” Awards, the Arts and Business Council’s Arts Excellence Award, five City Paper “Reader’s Choice” Awards, four Philadelphia Inquirer “Theatre Company of the Year citations, 52 awards and 234 nominations from the Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia’s Barrymore Awards for Excellence in Theatre, and was named “Best Theatre Company” by Philadelphia Weekly in 2009.
©2009 Arden Theatre Company, 40 N. 2nd St., Philadelphia, PA 19106. For tickets, call 215.922.1122.
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