Premiere of Mary Hall Surface's "Wonderland"-Inspired Alice Opens in MD Dec. 2

News   Premiere of Mary Hall Surface's "Wonderland"-Inspired Alice Opens in MD Dec. 2 Round House Theatre in Bethesda, MD, launches the world premiere of Alice, a new theatrically buoyant adaptation of Lewis Carroll's beloved novel "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland," opening Dec. 2 after previews from Nov. 26, for a holiday run through Dec. 28.

This family-friendly Alice is written and directed especially for the Round House stage by Helen Hayes Award winner Mary Hall Surface, one of the country's major family-theatre artists.

Alice is played by Meghan Grady, recently seen as Hannah in Woolly Mammoth Theatre's world premiere of Maria/Stuart.

Alice plays Round House's 400-seat Bethesda location. (The company also has a smaller venue in nearby Silver Spring.)

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"This new production further reinforces Round House's commitment to re-imagining, re-inventing, and re-interpreting contemporary and classic novels for the stage," according to the troupe. The playful, quick-change cast also includes Tonya Beckman Ross (Ensemble), Lise Bruneau (Ensemble), Marcus Kyd (Ensemble), Bill Largess (Ensemble), Hugh Nees (Ensemble) and Chris Wilson (Ensemble).

The artistic team includes Casey Sams (choreographer), Tony Cisek (scenic designer), Marianne Custer (costume designer), Kenton Yeager (lighting designer), Veronika Vorel (sound designer) and Martha Knight (stage manager).

According to production notes, "In this wildly imaginative adaptation, precocious young Alice has her birthday party interrupted by the appearance of a White Rabbit, who's checking his pocket watch and complaining that he's 'late.' She follows him down his rabbit hole, tumbling into a fantastic new world where she encounters an array of curious and curiouser creatures — including a mysterious Cheshire Cat and a manic Mad Hatter. She enters a race with no rules, endures a wacky tea-party, and travels to a magical sea in her adventures to reach the Queen of Hearts' beautiful yet illusive garden. Alice is perfect holiday entertainment for both the young and the young-at-heart. It will delight children with colorful escapades and characters and charm adults with Carroll's fascinating imagery and audacious wordplay."

Alice is recommended for ages six and up.

Playwright and director Surface said in a statement, "This is truly a production for intergenerational audiences. I am delighted to be back at Round House and working with such immortal characters. Lewis Carroll's story is rare and wonderful, and causes us to look at the meaning of life's journey."

Round House Theatre producing artistic director Blake Robison sated, "Like our other holiday shows, Alice rides the line between delightful childhood fantasy and solid entertainment for adults. Mary Hall Surface has led her talented team of designers and a gifted cast in creating an ingenious new version of Alice's story that the entire family can enjoy."

Surface directed the Helen Hayes Award-nominated Rebel Armies Deep into Chad and Tintypes in the 1990s. Recent Washington credits include productions at the National Gallery of Art (Who's in the Hopper), Folger Shakespeare Theatre (The Second Shepherds' Play), Atlas Performing Arts Center (Good Night Moon and Second Line), Imagination Stage (The Hundred Dresses) and an upcoming world premiere with the National Symphony Orchestra. Surface has also had 12 family theatre productions at the Kennedy Center. She has been nominated for four Helen Hayes Awards for Outstanding Direction (receiving the 2002 award for Theatre of the First Amendment's Perseus Bayou) and for four Charles MacArthur Awards for Outstanding New Play.

Round House Theatre Bethesda is located at 4545 East-West Highway. For more information, visit roundhousetheatre.org.