U.K.'s Salisbury Playhouse to Stage A Man of No Importance Musical
By Mark Shenton
The U.K.'s Salisbury Playhouse, located in the city of Salisbury in Wiltshire, roughly 90 miles southwest of London, is to stage a new actor/musician production of Ahrens and Flaherty's A Man of No Importance. It will begin performances April 25, 2013, for a run through May 18.
It was previously seen in the U.K. in a production at the fringe Union Theatre in London in 2009, subsequently transferring to the West End's Arts Theatre. This new production will be directed by the Salisbury Playhouse's artistic director Gareth Machin, designed by Matthew Wright, and feature musical supervision and arrangements by Kate Edgar.
A Man of No Importance, which features a book by Terrence McNally (who previously collaborated with Ahrens and Flaherty on Ragtime, and also contributed the books to the Kander and Ebb musicals The Rink and Kiss of the Spider Woman), is based on a 1994 independent film of the same title that starred Albert Finney. It originally premiered at Lincoln Center's Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater in September 2002, running to December, with a cast that featured Roger Rees as Alfie Byrne and also included Faith Prince and Steven Pasquale.
According to publicity materials, the show is set in 1960s Dublin, where bus conductor Alfie Byrne is the leading light of St Imelda's amateur theatre company. Tired of staging their usual production of The Importance of Being Earnest, Alfie plans to tackle Wilde's Salome instead, but doesn't appreciate the controversy of the production. In the course of rehearsals, he discovers that the theatre is not a place to hide from the world, but the very place where we may finally discover our true selves.
To book tickets, contact the box office on 01722 320333 or visit www.salisburyplayhouse.com for more details.
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