Providence, Rhode Island's Trinity Repertory Company announce their lineup for the 2002-03 season. Among the seven productions selected for their 39th season are both time-tested and original works by names such as Thorton Wilder, Caryl Churchill, Michael Frayn, David Henry Hwang, as well as a world premiere of Largo, a new musical that was workshopped at New York Stage & Film last summer.
Artistic director Oskar Eustis and company will present the seven shows and their annual production of A Christmas Carol at their two venues: the Elizabeth and Malcolm Chace Theater and the Sarah and Joseph Dowling, Jr. Theater. The company will also venture into co-production in a joint effort with California's Berkeley Repertory.
Thornton Wilder's The Skin of Our Teeth kicks of the year (Sept.-Oct.) in the Chace Theater. The Pulitzer Prize-winning drama sees the model family battle flood, famine, war and worse as they race through the millennia in this comedy about survival.
Caryl Churchill's gender-bending comedy Cloud Nine plays Sept.-Nov. in the Dowling Theater. The play which breaks all rules of time, gender and race turns the world of a family upside-down. The 1982 Obie Award winner will be co-produced with Berkeley Rep directed by their artistic director Tony Taccone.
Michael Frayn's 2000 Tony Award winner for Best Play Copenhagen will run Dec. - Jan. in the Dowling Theater. The drama theorizes what happened one September night in 1941 when Nazi-employed physicist Werner Heisenberg visited his mentor Niels Bohr and his wife in Copenhagen. Trinity Rep presents the world premiere of a new musical with book by David Henry Hwang and songs by Rob Hyman, Rick Chertoff, David Forman and Eric Bazilian Feb. -March in the Chace Theater. Largo follows a once-famous rock band, The Convictions, who went their separate ways after a bad break-up. Now, years later, they reunite in a secluded retreat in Iowa — where Dvorak found the inspiration for his New World symphony’s memorable "Largo" movement — to see if they can repeat history. A mix of folk, blues, rock and gospel songs by an award-winning group of composers and lyricists fuel Tony Award-winning David Henry Hwang's book.
Pop singer Cyndi Lauper starred in the 2001 NYS&F mounting.Ethan Silverman directed.
Another new work, Nickel & Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Joan Holden will continue their season (March-April) in the Dowling Theater. The new play based on Barbara Ehrenreich's best-seller will make its East Coast premiere at Trinity Rep. The San Francisco Mime Troupe's Holden follows the story of a woman — who under the guise of an unskilled recently-divorced homemaker — tries to survive working as a waitress, a cleaning woman, a Wal-Mart clerk and many other minimum-wage jobs across the United States.
Turning back to classics, the Thomas Meehan-Charles Strouse-Martin Charnin musical Annie will run April-May in the Chace Theater. The story of a little orphan girl who meets a millionaire and sets out to find her birth parents has been enjoyed by audiences since 1977 — when it won seven Tony Awards.
The season will conclude with a yet-to-be-determined new play in May-June at the Dowling Theater. Trinity Rep’s world premieres have gone on to productions and awards across the country, such as Paula Vogel's The Mineola Twins, John Belluso's Henry Flamethrowa and Kathleen Tolan's A Girl’s Life. This season Tony Kushner's Homebody/Kabul filled this slot and Trinity Rep will hold out again for the latest breaking play.
Tickets to Trinity Rep’s 39th season can be purchased at The Trinity Rep box office, 201 Washington Street in Providence, RI or by calling (401) 351-4242. Subscription packages are available for 2002-03 shows at a considerable discount from single ticket prices. For further information, visit www.trinityrep.com.
— by Ernio Hernandez