Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park's production of The Beauty Queen Of Leenane begins previews Feb. 27. The award-winning play by Anglo Irish writer Martin McDonagh opens March 2 and runs through March 31.
Irish actress Pauline Flanagan stars in the Cincinnati production at the Robert S. Marx Theatre. Flanagan (Mag) is a veteran of ten Broadway productions and appeared in the world premiere of Frank McGuinness' play Dolly West's Kitchen, where she earned the Samuel Beckett Best Actress Award (an Irish Tony). Also included in the cast are Giulia Pagano (Maureen), Matt Loney (Pato) and Kevin Henderson (Ray).
John Going helms the show. Going's Playhouse credits include The Importance of Being Earnest, Sylvia and Harvey , to name a few.
Part tragicomedy, part psychological thriller, The Beauty Queen Of Leenane (pronounced luh-NON) pits the aspirations of 40-year-old Maureen against her aging, self-centered mother who, though old, infirm and terrified of being abandoned, is diabolically manipulative and delights in taking pre-emptive strikes at Maureen's faintest glimmer of hope.
Playwright McDonagh, who is still under 30, wrote The Beauty Queen of Leenane in just eight days when he was only 23. His other works include A Skull in Connemara and The Lonesome West, the final two parts of the Leenane Trilogy. His darkly comic The Cripple Of Inishmaan is being produced by Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, March 15-April 2. The Beauty Queen of Leenane premiered in County Galway in 1996, and later enjoyed an acclaimed run that same year in London before debuting on Broadway in April 1998. Now performed widely, The Beauty Queen of Leenane won four Tonys and both the Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk awards for Best Play.
A co-production with the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, where it has been playing to full houses and glowing reviews since Jan. 5, the production is part of the Marx Theatre Series, which is presented by Heidelberg Distributing Company. Production notes also indicate that the theatre's 1999-2000 Season Design Sponsor is the Cinergy Foundation. Pauline Flanagan's performance is made possible by Netherland Rubber Company.
Cincinnati Play House in the Park is advising patrons that the show is not recommended for children.
The production team comprises set designer James Wolk, costume designer Elizabeth Covey and lighting designer Michael Philippi. Bruce E. Coyle is the production stage manager. Jenifer Morrow is the stage manager.
Charlotte Moore, artistic director at New York City's Irish Repertory Theatre, will be the guest speaker at Playhouse Perspectives, a free pre show lecture series on Mar.12 at 6 PM. Other programs include an audio described performance on Mar. 4, and a hearing-impaired performance on Mar. 5. Four Meet the Artists programs will follow performances on Mar. 5, 8,19 and 23. (Patrons should call to check these schedules.)
Tickets range $27.50-$39.50. The Beauty Queen of Leenane runs at the Robert S. Marx Theatre in Cincinnati. For information and tickets call the Playhouse box office at (513) 421-3888 or toll-free in Ohio, (800) 582-3208. Call (513) 345 2248 for TDD accessibility.