Enter the Guardsman, the romantic musical written by Indiana Repertory Theatre "associate artist" Scott Wentworth and based on Ferenc Molnar's The Guardsman, is the final production of IRT's 2000-2001 season, April 25-May 19.
The stylish musical comedy yarn concerns a husband-wife acting team whose marriage has grown cold. The husband impersonates a swashbuckling soldier who writes love letters to his wife and meets her in a tryst — in the hope his wife will profess her love to her husband.
Real-life husband and wife Brian Sutherland (of Broadway's The Sound of Music and1776 revivals) and Diane Sutherland (formerly Diane Fratantoni, who was Amalia in Broadway's She Loves Me revival) play the Actor and Actress.
Wentworth penned the libretto, Marion Adler (his wife) wrote the lyrics and Craig Bohmler wrote the score. Adler and Wentworth have acted together at the resident professional company of Indianapolis, including a run of Candida. Enter the Guardsman was nominated for the Best Musical Olivier Award in 1998 after a London staging. The show had its Off-Broadway debut in 2000.
Karen Azenberg directs and choreographs. The company includes Jeff Talbott as the Playwright, Anne Lauterbach as Wardrobe, Mary Jo McConnell as the Dresser, Mark David Kaplan as Wigs and Justin Brill the role of the Assistant Stage Manager. Helen Gregory will conduct a six-piece orchestra. Azenberg previously helmed IRT's Same Time Next Year, Guys and Dolls, The Gift of the Magi and Biloxi Blues. Designers are Russell Metheny (set), Gail Brassard (costumes) and Kendall Smith (lighting).
Official opening is April 27 on the IRT Mainstage. Tickets range $24-$35; $14 for young people. IRT is at 140 W. Washington Street in Indianapolis. For information, call (317) 635-5252 or visit www.indianarep.com.
— By Kenneth Jones