Miles Davis, Chet Baker, Stan Getz and Frank Sinatra all recorded the romantic "Stella By Starlight" from which Bernard Farrell's Irish comedy takes its name. Stella By Starlight receives its U.S. premiere Feb. 16-March 17 at the Laguna Playhouse in California. The company's artistic director, Andrew Barnicle, directs.
In Stella, two couples have had very different luck in a booming Irish economy; Paul and Geraldine have fully benefitted with the "Celtic Tiger" while Dermot and Stella have completely missed the boat. At the latter's Wicklow hills home, Dermot tries to convince everyone that the country life is preferable to the bustle of the city, but his efforts only result in surprising disclosures that question which couple is richer and which is poorer.
Laguna Playhouse also brought Farrell's Kevin's Bed to America. His other credits include Lovers at Versailles, set for its world premiere at the Abbey Theatre in spring, 2002, I Do Not Like Thee, Dr. Fell, All in Favour Say No!, Say Cheese! and The Last Apache Reunion.
Bairbre Dowling (Kevin's Bed, Broadway's Da) stars with Abbey Theatre actor Thomas MacGreevy, Warren Sweeney (Truckline Cafe), Amelia White (Broadway's Crazy for You), Joel Moore and Caitlin Shannon (A Bench in the Sun with Tim Conway).
Tickets are $24-$45. The Laguna Playhouse is located at 606 Laguna Canyon Road in Laguna Beach. For reservations, call (949) 497-ARTS. — By Christine Ehren