The Lycoming College Theater Department will perform Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest" Nov. 20 through 23. All performances will take place at the Mary L. Welch Theater at Lycoming College.
"The Importance of Being Earnest" is the story of two men, Jack and Algernon, who win the hearts of their loves by pretending to be named Earnest, a name that makes the women fall in love with the men. Naturally, the lies are revealed. Although disaster is inevitable, there is a happy ending.
Guest artist Mary Ethel Schmidt directs the Lycoming College performance. Schmidt is a Lycoming College alumnus and has been back to Lycoming on several occasions to guest direct and to teach in the theater department.
Robert Hoffman, as Algenon Moncrieff, and Kahla Moon, as Cecily Cardew, rehearse a scene from Oscar Wilde’s play “The Importance of Being Earnest” at Lycoming College’s Mary Welch Theatre.
Kahla Moon, as Cecily Cardew, left, and Hannah Eyler, as Gwendolen Fairfax, rehearse a scene from Oscar Wilde’s play “The Importance of Being Earnest” at Lycoming College’s Mary Welch Theatre.
Emily Early, as Lady Bracknell, and Michael Sampsell, as Jack Worthing, rehearse a scene from Oscar Wilde’s play “The Importance of Being Earnest” at Lycoming College’s Mary Welch Theatre.
"It's great to keep having opportunities to come back," said Schmidt.
The Lycoming College Theater Department plans to perform the show in the original time period and place.
"The story takes place in 1895 in London. That's when it was created and we're basically trying to recreate that world," said Schmidt.
Recreating the world of London 1895 isn't the only challenge that the cast faces. The story has been called one of the greatest English comedies.
"It's a great one and we are certainly challenged by that fact. We really have to answer to those expectations," said Schmidt.
The play was adapted for film in 1952, 2002 and 2011; there are also opera, musical, radio and television versions.
The play stars Lycoming seniors Kahla Moon and Hannah Eyler; juniors Sarah E. Beddingfield, Emily Early and Makenzy LeFever; sophomore Michael Sampsell; and freshmen Robert Hoffman and Christopher Moyer.
The popular dinner and a show event will continue with this performance. Parkhurst Catering will offer a pre-show dinner for patrons in the Jane Schultz Room on the Lycoming College campus. Dinner will be offered Nov. 22 for "The Importance of Being Earnest."
All performances will begin at 8 p.m. Admission for Lycoming College students, faculty and staff is free. To reserve tickets, call the box office at 570-321-4048.