West Virginia University School of Theatre & Dance’s final show of the fall season is a laugh-a-minute French farce with a very American sense of humor, “The Liar” by David Ives, adapted from the comedy by the 17th-century French dramatist Pierre Corneille.
Charming, handsome and an incorrigible liar, Dorante has come to Paris seeking pleasure. He falls head over heels in love with the beautiful Clarice, but the old boy meets girl scenario goes horribly awry. Mistaking her name for that of her best friend, Lucrece, Dorante winds up getting involved in a duel, tangling himself in a series of gargantuan lies, and all the while, truly making his mark on Paris. Sophisticated, fiendishly clever, and a bit naughty, this playful adaptation of the classic Corneille French comedy makes for an evening filled with delight.
Acclaimed playwright David Ives, known for his evening of one-act comedies “All in the Timing,” and recent Broadway premiere “Venus in Fur,” puts an eccentric twist on the original 1643 text, making it a screwball comedy with gags that include the audience, all the while keeping the zany characters locked into rhyming verse.
The Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C., commissioned Ives for his adaptation of “The Liar” in 2010 as part of their Rediscovery Series.
WVU Resident Artist Jim Knipple is the director of “The Liar,” his first show as a professor in the School of Theatre & Dance.
“I feel extremely privileged to be introduced to the WVU community with this show,” Knipple said. “It’s fast paced, it’s hilarious, and it’s a pretty fun ride for the audience. I have been really blessed to work with an amazing cast and design team, and we are excited to finally present this show to an audience.”
Scenic design for “The Liar” is by Professor Robert Klingelhoefer, costume design is by Professor Mary McClung, lighting design is by Master of Fine Arts design/tech student Josh Taylor, and sound design is by Professor Alan McEwen.
“The Liar” features Master of Fine Arts acting students Kyle Walter as Dorante, Nick Ryan as Geronte, Landon Green as Cliton, Mya Brown as Lucrece and Stephanie Freeman as Isabelle/Sabine. It also features Bachelor of Fine Arts acting students Shannon Uphold as Clarice, Joshua Smith as Philiste, and Bachelor of Arts acting student Ryan Leach as Alcippe.
“The Liar” runs in the Gladys G. Davis Theatre in the Creative Arts Center on the Evansdale Campus Nov. 21-22 at 7:30 p.m. and continues Dec. 3-7 at 7:30 p.m., with a closing matinee on Dec. 8 at 2 p.m.
This show contains mild adult situations and suggestive humor.
Tickets are $20 for the general public and $15 for senior citizens and students. There is a group rate of $10 per ticket for groups of 10 or more.
An ongoing rehearsal blog is available on the School of Theatre & Dance website at http://ccarts.wvu.edu/theatreanddanceblog.
CONTACT: Charlene Lattea, College of Creative Arts
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