Playwright Lee Blessing, whose past La Jolla Playhouse triumphs include A Walk in the Woods and Fortinbras, will return to the Mandell Weiss Forum for the 2000 season with the California premiere of his new play Going to St. Ives, which runs Sept. 17-Oct. 15. Maria Mileaf directs.
The acquisition of Blessing's play has prompted the Playhouse to alter its subscription schedule. The world premiere (at the Mandell Weiss Theatre) of Thoroughly Modern Millie will now take place Oct. 15, with a run ending Nov. 12. Tickets are on sale for all six productions of the Playhouse's 2000 season.
Going to St. Ives is a high-stakes drama centering on two women, a British eye surgeon and the mother of a vicious African dictator. While their meeting is ostensibly about the African woman's decision to undergo a critical eye operation, each woman brings a hidden agenda to the occasion.
Blessing's plays have won many awards and have been produced on stages around the world. He wrote Going to St. Ives in 1997, the year it premiered at Seattle's A Contemporary Theatre in a production starring Gloria Foster.
Mileaf directed Lobster Alice at Playwrights Horizons this past season. Other New York credits include Erik Ehn's 'Maid. La Jolla Playhouse is located at 2910 La Jolla Village Drive. For tickets and information call (858) 550-1010 or visit www.lajollaplayhouse.com.
-- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent