LONG BEACH - "Private Lives," a romantic comedy about the people we can't live with - or without - opens at International City Theatre in the Long Beach Performing Arts Center on Aug. 26.The comedy is directed by Luke Yankee, who served as artistic director of the Long Beach Civic Light Opera 14 years ago. "Private Lives is one of my favorite plays," he said. "I love the sophistication, the dialogue that sparkles like good champagne, the witty repartee, and the whole aspect of these very wealthy, privileged adults acting like impulsive children." In "Private Lives," Amanda and Elyot can't live together and they can't live apart. when they discover they are honeymooning in the same hotel with their new spouses, they not only fall in love all over again - they learn to hate each other all over again too. Abandoning their new spouses, the reunited couple soon realizes the same issues that ended their first turbulent marriage continue to plague them. When first produced in 1930, "Private Lives" was an instant critical and commercial success, earning playwright Noel Coward the honor of being the highest-paid author in the English-speaking world. He also enjoyed playing the role of Elyot for some time after the play's premiere. Subsequent revivals on Broadway and the West End have earned nominations and major theater awards including Drama Desk, World Theatre and Tony Awards. The ICT production stars Freddy Douglas (praised by the Los Angeles Times as "one of the best Hamlets in memory") as Elyot; Caroline Kinsolving (most recently seen as Kate in 'The Taming of the Shrew' for the Kingsmen Shakespeare Company) as Amanda; Jennice Butler (previously directed by Luke Yankee in 'The Women') as Sibyl; Adam Smith (last seen at ICT as Bob in 'How the Other Half Loves') as Victor; and Wendy Cutler (improv comedy veteran) as Louise. "Private Lives" plays Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m., Aug. 26 through Sept. 18. Tickets are $37 for Thursday shows and $44 for all others, except opening night, which is $55 and includes a reception with the actors following the performance. Preview performances will take place Aug. 23-25. Tickets are $29. For tickets and information, call (562) 436-4610 or go to internationalcitytheatre.org.
********** Published: August 18, 2011 - Volume 10 - Issue 18