Due to "exceptionally strong advance ticket sales," the Old Globe Theatre production of Travels With My Aunt in San Diego will run through April 27 instead of April 20. Craig Noel directed the Giles Havergal comedy, adapted from Graham Greene's 1968 novel.
In Aunt, stuffy, retired Henry Pulling meets his Aunt Augusta, leading to "a manic itinerary of love affairs, smuggling and murder." Havergal has said the story "is really about the age-old problem of trying to find a balance between freedom and discipline, license and control. Should you allow people freedom to do whatever they want or control them to a degree?... Henry Pulling's eyes are opened to a completely different world than he has ever experienced."
Though the novel offers over two dozen eccentric characters, Travels With My Aunt the play has only four actors playing all of them -- including the female roles. Old Globe's staging features Jefrey [sic] Alan Chandler, William Roesch, James Saba and Brian Lohmann. Director Noel is the Old Globe's executive director -- and has been since 1939. He's directed 220 plays there and supervised over 365 others.
Meanwhile, Old Globe artistic director Jack O'Brien has announced the Globe's Festival `97 schedule, which will mix Shakespeare with new works by Hugh Leonard, Mark Harelik and Benn W. Levy.
Here's the Festival line-up:
Othello, (Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, June 29-Aug. 9, opens July 5).
In Shakespeare's tragedy, the Moor of Venice turns jealous when Iago tells lies about his wife, Desdemona. The Comedy Of Errors, (Lowell Davies, Aug. 24-Oct. 4, opens Aug. 30).
Shakespeare again -- this time with a shipwreck, mistaken identities and two sets of twins "in the course of a single antic day."
The Legacy (Old Globe Theatre, July 13-Aug. 30, opens July 19).
Mark Harelik follows up his acclaimed The Immigrant with the second play in his Russian-Jewish emigre trilogy (according to Old Globe spokesperson David Tucker, the last play is to be called "American Dream"). The Estanitsky family, strangers in the desolate desert of West Texas, struggle to maintain its cultural heritage. Harelik will also act in the play.
The Mask Of Moriarty (Old Globe, Sept. 14-Oct. 25, opens Sept. 20)
Before he became the ultimate interpreter of Ray Cooney farces, Paxton Whitehead also made his name playing that great detective, Sherlock Holmes. Globe trotters can now catch Whitehead in Hugh Leonard's comedy, The Mask Of Moriarty, wherein Holmes and sidekick Dr. Watson figure out who murdered whom on Waterloo Bridge...
Springtime For Henry (Cassius Carter Centre Stage, July 6-Aug. 16, opens July 12).
Yes, that last word is "Henry," for long before Mel Brooks concocted his "Producers," audiences were laughing at Benn W. Levy's farce about rakish Henry Dewlip, "a man who never leaves a drink unfinished, lets a lady go without making a pass, or a bet remain unwagered."
Another production will be scheduled for the Cassius Carter Centre Stage, and patrons subscribing to the Globe's Festival `97 by March 17 will be able to save $10 on selected performances of the Beauty And The Beast tour, playing at the Civic Theatre July 1, 9 and 10.
Remaining shows this season include the current Travels With My Aunt Dracula, Below The Belt and The Real Thing.
For subscription passes and other information on the Old Globe, refer to the regional listing or call (619) 235-2250.
--By David Lefkowitz