Walnut Street Theatre veteran Will Stutts directs his own play, Oscar Wilde's Lover, March 30-April 11, officially opening March 31 at the Philadelphia theatre's Independence Studio On 3. This world premiere production tells of playwright Wilde's relationship with his lover Lord Alfred Douglas, which led to Wilde's destruction and -- possibly -- his immortality. The tale was told twice in New York last season, on Broadway in The Judas Kiss and Off- Broadway in Gross Indecency.
Dan Olmstead plays Wilde (and other roles) in the drama, accompanied by Paul Soileau, who plays Lord Alfred. Designing the show are Conrad Maust (set), Colleen McMillan (costumes), Scott Smith (sound) and Joe Levy (lighting).
In other Walnut news, as David Hare gets ready to open his third play on Broadway this season, the Independence Studio On 3 will offer a Hare drama from two seasons back: the politically-charged romance, Skylight.
This Olivier Award-winning drama explores the relationship of a businessman and his mistress who meet again three years after they've parted. Walnut producing artistic director Bernard Havard directs the piece, which stars Karen Hinton, Marc O'Donnell and William Leach (the Studio's Shylock). Skylight starts previews April 27, opens the next night and runs to May 23. Hare's popularity caused the Walnut to extend the run of the show from the standard two weeks to four, even before Skylight started previews.
Other Hare plays include this year's Broadway triad of The Blue Room, Via Dolorosa and Amy's View, plus The Judas Kiss and Racing Demon.
For tickets and information on Oscar Wilde's Lover and Skylight at the Walnut Street Theatre Independence Studio on 3, call (215) 574-3550, ext. 4.
-- By David Lefkowitz