Recently Closed: Castros Beard, seen at Stages

Posted by: Staffon 2004/9/25 8:03:00 2910 reads Castro's Beard
By Brian Stewart
Directed by Kenn McLaughlin


October 6-24

Stages Repertory Theatre opens its 26th season with the regional premiere of Castro’s Beard. The play follows four CIA agents as they develop a plan to eliminate Castro and “liberate” Cuba. From a Mob hit to poisoned shoes and exploding cigars, their schemes range from the merely unworkable to the truly bizarre. Even more jaw-dropping than the ideas themselves is the fact that they’re all based in reality...
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Castro’s Beard made its world premiere on September 6, 2001, at the 42nd Street Theater in New York City. The play was originally conceived by British playwright Brian Stewart as a Cold-War-era office comedy about the rise of Fidel Castro and the wacky-but-true schemes developed by the CIA for offing the Cuban leader. However, the polarizing effect of September 11, combined with the current upheavals in the CIA and the restructuring of intelligence bureaucracies in the U.S., has lent this political satire a weight beyond Stewart’s original intent. As one New York critic wrote in the Off-Off-Broadway Review: “As the U.S. government ponders its next move, what last week was satiric is now eerily ominous.”

Stewart is perhaps best known to American audiences as an actor on the Golden-Globe-winning BBC television series The Office. He was inspired to write Castro’s Beard by a BBC documentary called The CIA. While today’s terrorists can be found around the globe, Stewart notes that part of this country’s paranoia about Cuba stemmed from its proximity to U.S. shores. However, when it comes to dealing with today’s terrorists, “the principles are exactly the same,” says Stewart. As one of his characters says, “To unite a nation, you’ve got to have a common enemy.”

Though he now works full-time as a writer, director, and actor, Stewart knows the bureaucracy of which he writes. Having earned a Ph.D. from the University of London, he was employed by several multinational corporations. Several of his plays have been produced at theatres in the UK including: Rossini! (Edinburgh Fringe festival); Mint Condition (Beckenham Theatre Centre); Matters Arising and An Elegant Intrigue (Abbey Theatre); The Trunk (Queen Mother Theatre) and All in Vein (Barn Theatre).

Cast:
Bill Brawner- David Born*
Ted Torphy -Rutherford Cravens*
Paul Drake-John Richard Johnston
Tom Madison - Jeffrey Yaworski
*Denotes AEA Member

Production:
Scenic Designer........................ Travis Johnson
Lighting Designer...................... John Smetak
Costume Designer.................... Fernando Zamudio
Sound Designer........................ Ahmad Hernandez
Properties Designer................... Jodi Bobrovsky
Production Stage Manager.......... Karen Mata

DATES:
Previews: Wednesday, October 6, and Thursday, October 7, 2004
Opening: Friday, October 8
Close: Sunday, October 24

TIMES:
Opening Night: 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday and Thursday: 7:30 p.m.
Friday and Saturday: 8:00 p.m.
Sunday: 3:00 p.m.

TICKETS:
Previews: $20 - $25 (October 6 & 7)
Regular: $25 - $35

DISCOUNTS:
Students: $10 day of show Wed/Thurs/Sun., $15 day of show Fri/Sat
Senior: $15 & $20 Preview; $20 - $25 Wed/Thurs/Sun; $25 & $30 Fri/Sat
Group Discounts available. Call the Box Office for more information.

*Take An Additional $5 Off For Mentioning Your A Member of Theatreport/saw this here!

BOX OFFICE:
713.527.0123

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3201 Allen Parkway at Waugh Drive

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