New York's Off-Broadway Target Margin Theater launches its 1997-98 season of "Lost American Classics" with a revival of the little-known and rarely-seen Preston Sturges comedy, Strictly Dishonorable, which opened Sept. 3 at the Vineyard's Dimson Theatre (108 E. 15th St.).
Known primarily as a screenwriter and director of such Hollywood comedies as The Lady Eve, Sullivan's Travels and The Miracle of Morgan's Creek, Sturges first tasted success on Broadway. Strictly Dishonorable, his second play after The Guinea Pig, opened to great success in 1929 under the direction of Antoinette Perry, later the namesake of the Tony Awards. Sturges was at the time working as an assistant stage manager and soon afterwards left for Hollywood.
Strictly Dishonorable is set in Tomaso Antiovi's West 49th Street speakeasy in 1929, where a young woman wanders with her fiance and unexpectedly finds love with a handsome stranger. Sex, alcohol and race relations contribute to presenting a decidedly darker screwball comedy than usual.
Target's artistic director David Herskovits directs a cast that includes Patricia Dunnock, Steven Rattazzi, Andrew Dolan, Greig Sargeant, David Letwin, Mary Newfeld, Jeff Ricketts and Yuri Skujins.
Other planned productions planned for this season include Dorothy and DuBose Heyward's Mamba's Daughters, DuBose Heyward's Brass Ankle, J.N. Barker's The Indian Princess or La Belle Sauvage and Percey MacKay's The Scarecrow. Strictly Dishonorable opens Sept. 3 and runs through Sept. 20, Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8PM and Sundays at 7PM, with added matinees Sept. 13 and 20 at 2PM. Preview tickets are $8, all others are $12 and $15. For reservations call (212) 353-3874.