Hamlet to Seek Counsel of Martin Luther and Dr. Faustus in Philly World Premiere Wittenberg

News   Hamlet to Seek Counsel of Martin Luther and Dr. Faustus in Philly World Premiere Wittenberg Arden Theatre Company, the resident professional theatre company in Philadelphia, announced its 2007-08 season, which will include a world premiere play about Hamlet's college days.

Wittenberg, by David Davalos, will premiere Jan. 17-March 16, 2008, on Arden's Arcadia Stage.

According to the Arden's 20th anniversary announcement, "Set during late October of 1517, this smart, sprightly and audacious battle of wits features university colleagues Dr. Faustus (a man of appetites), Martin Luther (a man of faith) and their student Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (a youth struggling not only with his beliefs but also with his tennis game). … Davalos brings us the story behind the stories in a highly entertaining and accessible exploration of reason versus faith, starring Scott Greer as Faustus and Greg Wood as Luther."

The playwright pulls from European history (Luther was the professor of theology at the University of Wittenberg, who launched the Protestant movement) and English lit (The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus is Christopher Marlowe's most famous play, based upon the legend of a man who sells his soul to the devil; and Hamlet is the classic tragedy by Shakespeare).

Hamlet begins as the Prince of Denmark learns of the death of his father, the king, and returns to Elsinore Castle from Wittenberg, where he was a university student.

Also on the 2007-08 schedule is Assassins by Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman (Sept. 13-Oct. 14) with Jeffrey Coon, Ben Dibble, Scott Greer, Joshua Lamon, Mary Martello, Christopher Patrick Mullen, Jay Pierce and James Sugg; Michael Hollinger's An Empty Plate at the Café Du Grand Boeuf (Oct. 11-Dec. 9), an all-new production of Arden favorite Hollinger's first Arden play, a dark comedy set in 1961 in a restaurant in Paris; The Piano Lesson by August Wilson (March 6-April 6, 2008), directed by Walter Dallas; a unique production of Our Town (May 22-June 22, 2008), directed by artistic director Terrence J. Nolen on the Haas Stage and at the historic Christ Church next door (Act I will be played at the Arden's Haas Stage, Act II at Christ Church and Act III back at the Arden). A slate of children's theatre will be announced shortly.

For more information, visit www.ardentheatre.org.

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