actors theatre of louisville

Arts and Humanities
11:54 am
Fri November 15, 2013

REVIEW | Like Its Hero, Actors Theatre's 'Tom Jones' Is Charming, Flawed

Drigan Lee and Maren Bush as Tom and Sophia in Jon Jory's new adaptation of Henry Fielding's "Tom Jones" at Actors Theatre of Louisville.
Credit Bill Brymer / Actors Theatre of Louisville

Actors Theatre of Louisville welcomed legendary former producing director Jon Jory home for the company's fiftieth anniversary season with his new adaptation of Henry Fielding's classic picaresque novel "Tom Jones." Directed by Jory, "Tom Jones" opened last night in the Bingham Theatre and runs through December 8. 

It's fitting that Jory, under whose leadership Actors Theatre became the Tony Award-winning institution that it is, returns for the golden anniversary with a new play. Jory's been on a tear through the Jane Austen catalog for the last several years, staging his adaptations of "Pride and Prejudice" and "Sense and Sensibility" at Actors Theatre ("Emma" and "Persuasion" have gone up elsewhere, too), but this time he went further back in Brit-lit history to the book commonly recognized as the first English novel.

On stage, "Tom Jones" is a frothy, funny romp through the backyards and bedchambers of the English countryside and London's snobby salons. And like the eponymous hero, the play packs plenty of charm, but not always enough to overcome its weaknesses. 

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Arts and Humanities
8:15 am
Sun November 10, 2013

Humana Festival Lineup: Anne Bogart and SITI Company, Jordan Harrison, Kimber Lee and More

Anne Bogart will direct "Steel Hammer," a play about John Henry created by SITI Company and based on texts by playwrights Kia Corthron, Will Power, Carl Hancock Rux and Regina Taylor in the 38th Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville.

Actors Theatre of Louisville has announced the lineup for the 38th annual Humana Festival of New American Plays.

The festival, which coincides with the company’s 50th anniversary, features six world premieres from playwrights and ensembles both new and returning to Actors Theatre.

The Humana Festival opens Feb. 26 and runs through April 6.

Notable veterans presenting new work in the festival include long-standing Actors Theatre collaborators Anne Bogart and the SITI Company, who have partnered with four playwrights (Kia Corthron, Will Power, Carl Hancock Rux and Regina Taylor) on “Steel Hammer,” a play with music by Julia Wolfe about American folklore legend John Henry.

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Arts and Humanities
12:30 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

REVIEW | Actors Theatre Scales Unexpected Heights With 'The Mountaintop'

Dominique Morisseaux and Larry Powell in Actors Theatre of Louisville's production of Katori Hall's "The Mountaintop."
Credit Bill Brymer / Actors Theatre of Louisville

With a legend comes tension, often between two camps: those who relish exposing their all-too-human flaws and those who need some things and people sacred. Because we long to feel closer to our heroes, but there’s no guarantee we’ll like what we see if we’re allowed too close. Playwright Katori Hall takes great pains to humanize Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. from the top of her award-winning play “The Mountaintop,” depicting him as a flawed man who struggles with ego, vanity, self-doubt, fear and fidelity, but the play achieves a rare balance and takes equal care with King’s legacy, too.

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Arts and Humanities
10:57 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Actors Theatre Commissions Lucas Hnath Play for Humana Festival

Lucas Hnath

Actors Theatre of Louisville announced today that Lucas Hnath will premiere his new play "The Christians" in the 2014 Humana Festival of New American Plays. The play was commissioned by Actors Theatre and will be directed by artistic director Les Waters. 

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Arts and Humanities
3:33 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

'The Mountaintop' Portrays the Man Behind the Civil Rights Legend

Credit Actors Theatre of Louisville

It's Memphis, 1968. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. has just delivered his now-famous “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech in support of the city's Black sanitation workers, who are striking for higher pay and workplace treatment equal to their white counterparts. The civil rights leader would be shot on the balcony outside his room at the Lorraine Motel by James Earl Ray the next day.

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Arts and Humanities
2:13 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

REVIEW | New Fights, More Horror in 'Dracula'

Randolph Curtis Rand in "Dracula" at Actors Theatre of Louisville.
Bill Brymer Actors Theatre of Louisville

Some holiday shows become tradition, annual outings passed down through and binding across generations. But attending Actors Theatre of Louisville's "Dracula" feels more like a ritual (like the season's first pumpkin ale or latté), a key event in observing the transition from summer to fall.

"Dracula" opened Friday the 13th and runs through Halloween in the Bingham Theatre. Directed by William McNulty, the production changes in small ways from year to year, but it rarely fails to properly usher in the longer nights of autumn.  The gothic thriller is the theater's second-longest running production, and ahead of the national curve as the country's only annual "Dracula" production. 

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Arts and Humanities
3:33 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

REVIEW | 'Noises Off' Opens Actors' 50th Season with Laughs

Jeremy Lawrence playing Selsdon Mowbray playing a burglar in Actors Theatre's production of "Noises Off."
Credit Bill Brymer / Actors Theatre of Louisville

Actors Theatre of Louisville launched its 50th anniversary season last night with a rowdy champagne cork pop. Opening night of Michael Frayn’s crowd-pleasing backstage comedy “Noises Off” truly felt like a celebration of all that is fun about live theater.

With gently bawdy wit and some impressive feats of physical comedy, the play offers an insider’s laugh at the theater world, but its broad humor and endearing characters also make the show accessible to a general audience.  “Noises Off” runs in the Pamela Brown Auditorium through September 22.

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Arts and Humanities
4:38 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Getting Technical: The Final Days of Rehearsal for Actors Theatre's 'Noises Off'

Production stage manager Pablo Holmes' command center for tech rehearsal. What's in all of those Altoid tins?
Credit Erin Keane / WFPL News

Friday, August 30 –  it's less than a week before "Noises Off" opens, and director Meredith McDonough  has an odd request for an actor who plans on shaving his beard that evening.

"Nathan, can I get less of your face?" 

Actors Theatre of Louisville last staged this backstage farce (often called “a love letter to the theatre”) in 1998. Then-artistic director Jon Jory directed, and McDonough was Jory’s directing assistant – not a bad gig to kick-start a career.  

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Arts and Humanities
2:36 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Actors Theatre Celebrates Golden Anniversary with Block Party

Fifty years ago, the founders of Actors Theatre of Louisville were upstarts, theater revolutionaries caught up in the ground-swell of the American regional theater movement, determined to de-centralize professional theater and embed it in communities across the country. The organization turns 50 this year.

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Arts and Humanities
7:00 am
Mon April 22, 2013

New Voices Festival Celebrates Young Playwrights

Playwright Chanze Castro discusses a script change with director Steven Rahe.
Erin Keane WFPL News

Actors Theatre of Louisvilles' apprentices open their final production of the season tonight. The New Voices Young Playwrights Festival is a bill of ten-minute plays written by eight area high school students. 

The plays were selected from more than 500 ten-minute plays submitted by middle and high school students from Kentucky and Southern Indiana this year. Each play in the festival receives a full production, with a director, designers, a dramaturg, a cast of apprentice actors and a seat in the rehearsal hall for the playwright. 

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