The Vancouver Playhouse has announced its 1998/99 season and the most intriguing bit of information is a remount of John Gray's Billy Bishop Goes to War.
There has been talk in several quarters about mounting a touring production with its original stars John Gray and Eric Peterson, as a 20th anniversary celebration of this popular piece. The Playhouse PR department will only say that negotiations are ongoing in regard to casting and that artistic director Glynis Leyshon is indeed speaking to the show's creators about reprising their roles.
The other really interesting production is a new creation by Morris Panych, in collaboration with Theatre Sports performers Ellie Harvie, Gary Jones and Shawn MacDonald, and designed by Ken MacDonald. With more than passing reference to H.G. Well's The Invisible Man and The Time Machine, this show, titled The History of Things To Come, will pair Playhouse actors with established improvisors in a partly scripted/partly improvised piece that will include audience participation.
Panych had a huge hit at the Playhouse last season with The Overcoat, which producer David Mirvish expressed interest in, but we have yet to see it in the east.
Other shows include Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband, Leah Cherniak, Ann-Marie MacDonald and Martha Ross's hit production of The Attic, The Pearls and Three Fine Girls, David Hare's Skylight and Moliere's Tartuffe. Casting and directing details will be announced in approximately six to eight weeks.
The Vancouver Playhouse season runs from Sept. 7th to May 1st. For information call 604-872 6622.
By Mira Friedlander