With its previous productions this season, Splash Hatch on the E Going Down and Les Blancs, Baltimore's Center Stage concerned itself with black women. Now the company has been scaring audiences with The Woman in Black, by Stephen Mallatrat, adapted from a book by Susan Hill.
This ghostly drama concerns a British barrister who believes his family is being haunted by a mysterious woman. He hires an actor to help reenact these encounters and exorcise the unwanted spirit. Penned in 1987 and a continuing London hit since 1989, The Woman In Black ends its scheduled haunt of Center Stage's Pearlstone Space, Apr. 19, after starting previews Mar. 20 and opening Mar. 25.
Michael Rudko and Jefferson Mays star in this two-hander, which is directed by Tim Vasen, a Center Stage associate artist. Designing Woman are Hugh Landwehr (set), Tom Broecker (costumes), Mark McCullough (lighting) and John Gromada (sound/original music). Jill Rachel Morris serves as dramaturg.
Following The Woman In Black will be How I Learned To Drive, by Baltimore native Paula Vogel. Just ending its run Off Broadway following the announcement of its Pulitzer win, the drama follows the unsteady, unhealthy relationship between a young girl and her alcoholic uncle. The show nabbed Lucille Lortel and NY Drama Critics Circle Awards for Best Play. (May 8-June 7 at the Pearlstone space.) For tickets and information on the Center Stage season, please call (410) 332-0033 or check out their website at http://www.centerstage.org
With 12,604 subscribers in tow, Baltimore's Center Stage is now in its 35th season, one that has mainly been dedicated to women playwrights and authors born in Maryland.
-- By David Lefkowitz