The 76th season of the Door County institution runs June 14-Oct. 16, opening with Sean Grennan's bittersweet comedy (to July 3). Peninsula performers are often drawn from the Chicago Equity talent pool, as is the case with Making God Laugh.
Chicago native and New York City playwright Grennan has been on site working with the cast, which includes his sister, Chicago-bred New York City actress Erin Noel Grennan.
Sean Grennan's plays and musicals include Luck!, Another Night Before Christmas, Married Alive!, Beer for Breakfast, A Dog's Life, As Long As We Both Shall Live and First and Ten, among others. Making God Laugh focuses on retired parents "who welcome home their children over various family holidays spanning three decades." Tom Mula directs the production.
According to Peninsula Players notes, "As the parents and grown children deal with each of their evolving adult lives, their dreams, unresolved issues, old family traditions, and dubious recipes are trotted out as tensions flare up and laughs break out during Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's visits."
The title is swiped from a line by Woody Allen: "If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans." The design team for Making God Laugh includes Keith Pitt (scenic design); Pamela R. Rehberg (costume design); Stephen White (lighting design); Sarah E. Ross (properties design); and Cecil Averett (sound design).
The Peninsula season also includes The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (July 6-24); Aaron Sorkin's A Few Good Men (July 27-Aug. 14); the Midwest premiere of Ken Ludwig's A Fox on the Fairway (Aug. 17-Sept. 4); and Yasmina Reza's God of Carnage, translated by Christopher Hampton (Sept. 7-Oct. 16).
Peninsula Players, run by artistic director Greg Vinkler, began in 1935 when the theatre opened — behind the Bonnie Brook Motel in Fish Creek — with Noel Coward's Hay Fever. The company was founded by a brother and sister team, Caroline and Richard Fisher, "who dreamed of an artistic utopia in the northwoods where actors, designers and technicians could focus on their craft while being surrounded by nature in a contemplative setting," according to the company. Peninsula Players moved to the theatre's present location along the shore of Green Bay in 1937. Professional actors, directors and designers work side-by-side with college interns while living on the Players' 16-acre campus.
For more information, visit www.peninsulaplayers.com.