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Northlight Theatre has announced its 46th season, opening with The “Lifespan of a Fact” by Jeremy Kareken & David Murrell and Gordon Farrell, directed by Halena Kays. The season continues with “Mr. Dickens’ Hat” by Michael Hollinger, directed by David Catlin; followed by “Fireflies,” by Donja R. Love, directed by Mikael Burke; and “A Woman of No Importance” by Oscar Wilde, adapted and directed by Jessica Thebus. Closing out the season is “Unlikeable Heroine” by Melissa Ross, directed by Jessica Fisch.
“In the 2020-21 Season we are proud to continue our tradition of new work,” said Artistic Director BJ Jones. “Our Interplay new play development program yielded ‘Mr. Dickens’ Hat’ by Michael Hollinger, which received a rousing response from the audience at our reading in December. Melissa Ross’ world premiere ‘Unlikeable Heroine’ is a timely tale of higher education’s shifting landscape. But it is also thrilling to discover hidden gems that resonate in our current climate like ‘A Woman of No Importance’ by Oscar Wilde.”
The Northlight 2020-21 Season (descriptions from a press release):
THE LIFESPAN OF A FACT
By Jeremy Kareken & David Murrell and Gordon Farrell
Directed by Halena Kays
September 24 – November 1, 2020
A high-profile New York magazine is about to publish a potentially groundbreaking piece. But first, a determined intern is given a big assignment: fact check it. So begins an intensely funny debate between an earnest fact-checker, an eccentric author, and the fair but practical editor attempting to bridge the expanse between painstaking accuracy and impassioned “embellishment.” Based on a true(ish) story, this hyper-current comedy is the ultimate showdown between truth and fiction.
The World Premiere play with music
MR. DICKENS’ HAT
By Michael Hollinger
Directed by David Catlin
Featuring Cordelia Dewdney and Bethany Thomas
November 19 – December 27, 2020
In a cozy Victorian shop sits the hat of Charles Dickens, who once used it to carry water to the victims of a train wreck (that’s true!). When a pair of bumbling thieves plots to steal it (that’s imaginary!), young Kit sets out to foil their plan, save the hat, and free her father from debtors’ prison. Filled with a host of colorful characters, constables, and carolers, this warm winter’s tale with original music brings to life the universal lesson: “Beneath our hats, we are all the same.”
By Donja R. Love
Directed by Mikael Burke
January 21 – February 27, 2021
The Civil Rights Movement has ignited the South, and the charismatic Rev. Charles Grace needs a new speech to galvanize the people. But it is Olivia, his pregnant wife, who writes those fiery speeches, and her tolerance for playing the supporting role to her husband is wearing thin. As the growing weight of secrets threatens her marriage, and a nation’s hatred threatens her child’s future, Olivia must rediscover the place that love has in her world.
A WOMAN OF NO IMPORTANCE
By Oscar Wilde
Adapted and Directed by Jessica Thebus
Featuring Kate Fry
March 11 – April 18, 2021
High society gossips are aflutter when the illustrious Lord Illingworth offers a young clerk a job, only to have the boy’s mother object for reasons she won’t reveal. Illingworth’s knack for flattery and flirtation haven’t prepared him for this “woman of no importance” – an unexpected adversary taking matters into her own hands in Oscar Wilde’s signature cocktail of witty banter and upper crust exposé.
The World Premiere of
By Melissa Ross
Directed by Jessica Fisch
May 6 – June 13, 2021
When Diana takes on the presidency at a small liberal arts college in Vermont, she’s prepared to push the envelope as a newcomer to the world of higher education. Pressures mount quickly from a progressive student body, a faculty steeped in tradition, and the ethics of a popular but controversial course. This smart and surprising new play captures the importance of questioning one’s own perspective – and how progress rarely looks the same from every angle.
Subscriptions to the 2020-21 Northlight Season are available through the box office, 9501 Skokie Boulevard in Skokie, by phone at 847.673.6300 or online at northlight.org.