The back-to-back comedies on the Main Stage in Madison, NJ, are Molière's classic farce, The School for Wives, directed by Brian B. Crowe, July 8-26, and Michael Frayn's international hit, Noises Off, the popular British farce by about a fifth-rate theatrical touring company, directed by Paul Mullins, Aug. 5-30.
According to production notes, "In The School for Wives, translated into English verse by Richard Wilbur, a pompous middle-aged bachelor is determined to mold his ward into the perfect bride — for himself! But, it is he who gets the true education when best laid plans fall prey to a determined rival suitor, a pair of inept servants, and true love."
Returning for his third season with the Shakespeare Theatre is Bruce Cromer (The Taming of the Shrew, Life of Galileo) in the role of Arnolphe, the pompous bachelor; Erin Partin returns to the Shakespeare Theatre for her ninth season as Agnes, ward to Arnolphe. Also in the cast are Shakespeare Theatre veterans Daren Kelly as Orante, Jon Barker as Horace, Kristie Dale Sanders as Georgette, Greg Jackson as Alain and Scott Whitehurst as Chrysalde.
Making his Shakespeare Theatre debut is Jim Hopkins as Enrique.
Frayn's Olivier Award-winning play Noises Off "follows the frantic antics of a fifth-rate company of actors touring the country in a bedroom sex farce called Nothing On," according the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. "In Noises Off, audiences see Nothing On performed three times — once in a disastrous dress rehearsal, once from backstage, and once again later in the run!" Playing Harris' on-stage and off-stage rival is Shakespeare Theatre favorite Laila Robins (A Streetcar Named Desire, The Cherry Orchard) as Belinda Blair. The cast also includes Shakespeare Theatre veterans Andrew Weems as Lloyd Dallas, the director; Scott Barrow as Garry Lejeune; and Matt Bradford Sullivan as Frederick Fellows. Edmond Genest returns to The Shakespeare Theatre for his fourteenth season to play Selsdon Mowbray. Rounding out the cast are Katie Fabel as Brooke Ashton, Jessica Ires Morris as Poppy Norton Taylor, and Jack Moran as Tim Allgood.
To purchase tickets, call the box office at (973) 408-5600, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.