Sonia Flew Writer Assumes Lead of Haidle's New Persephone in Boston

News   Sonia Flew Writer Assumes Lead of Haidle's New Persephone in Boston Melinda Lopez — the actress-writer who penned Sonia Flew — has replaced previously announced Marilyn Dodd Frank in the lead role of Demeter in the world premiere of Noah Haidle's Persephone.
Playwright Melnda Lopez
Playwright Melnda Lopez

Nicholas Martin directs the new comedy from the author of Mr. Marmalade that began previews at The Huntington Theatre Company's Wimberly Theatre in the Stanford Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts March 30. The play opens April 11 and will play through May 6.  

"Lopez joined the cast last week and opened in previews on Friday, March 30," according to the theatre. (No reason for the change was given.) The Boston-based actress — seen at Huntington in The Rose Tattoo and A Month in the Country — is also known as the playwright of God Smells Like a Roast Pig and Sonia Flew. The latter premiered at Huntington in 2004.

Based on Greek myth (in which the title daughter was taken by Hades to the underworld and her mother Demeter withheld spring until her return), Haidle's dark-comedy take on Persephone finds "Greek harvest goddess Demeter [as she] narrates the story of her life, from creation in a 16th-century Italian studio to her current-day predicament in a New York City park as 'an eternal witness to the world without any power to look away.'" The work first appeared as a reading as part of Huntington's "Breaking Ground Festival of New Plays" in April 2006.

The cast features Seth Fisher (Huntington's Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Broadway's Julius Caesar) as Giuseppe, Jeremiah Kissel (Huntington's The Cherry Orchard, The Sisters Rosensweig), Mimi Lieber (Huntington's The Sisters Rosensweig, Broadway's Brooklyn Boy) as Celia and Lopez (Sonia Flew) as Demeter.

The design team includes David Korins (set), Jenny Mannis (costumes), Ben Stanton (lighting) and Mark Bennett (sound and original music). David Lurie serves as production stage manager. Haidle — whose Mr. Marmalade played Off-Broadway with the Roundabout Theatre Company in 2005 — has also penned Vigils, Princess Marjorie, Rag and Bone and Kitty Kitty Kitty.

Tickets to Persephone at the Wimberly Theatre, 527 Tremont Street in Boston, are available by calling (617) 266-0800. For more information, visit www.huntingtontheatre.org.