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Dance On Productions heats up the Odyssey Theatre with Tennessee Williams’ Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece.
The team behind 2016’s acclaimed production of Tennessee Williams’ rarely-seen Kingdom of Earth, is back — this time, with Williams’ Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece, A Streetcar Named Desire.
Jack Heller directs Susan Priver (down-on-her-luck showgirl Myrtle in Kingdom of Earth, LA Weekly award-winning The Lover by Harold Pinter) as Blanche DuBois and Max E. Williams (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., numerous productions with Elephant Theatre Company) as Stanley Kowalski in a visiting production at the Odyssey Theatre presented by Dance On Productions in association with Linda Toliver and Gary Guidinger. Passions flare and cultures collide in the sultry streets of New Orleans beginning May 25, with performances continuing though July 7.
Often regarded as among the finest plays of the 20th century, Streetcar is considered by many to be Williams' greatest work. The story famously recounts how the faded and promiscuous Blanche is pushed over the edge by Stanley, her sexy and brutal brother-in-law. Winner of the 1948 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the play launched the careers of Marlon Brando, Jessica Tandy, Kim Hunter and Karl Malden, and solidified the position of Tennessee Williams as one of the most important young playwrights of his generation.
“I connect personally with Blanche,” says Priver. “She has such an intense desire to bring poetry into her life, even as it unravels. I am always searching for the poetry in my life and in my acting.”
Heller — who has directed numerous works by Williams, including The Lost Plays of Tennessee Williams in which he also starred, and for which he won LA Weekly awards for “Best Actor” and “Best Ensemble” — did an enormous amount of research on the playwright when he starred in Joe Besecker's award-winning play Tennessee in the Summer, based on the playwright’s life. So when Heller saw Priver in Kingdom of Earth, he knew immediately that he wanted to direct her as Blanche.
“I knew right away when I saw Susan’s performance that she is a ‘Williams woman’,” he says. “All of the women in Williams’ plays are, in the end, either his mother or his sister, and Susan is both.”
The rest of the cast includes Melissa Sullivan as Stella Christopher Parker as Blanche’s suitor, Mitch Kelly Carrey and Alejandro Bravo as upstairs neighbors Eunice and Steve Juan Sucre as Stanley’s poker buddy, Pablo Sean Rose as the teenager collecting for the newspaper who finds Blanche alone at home and Nadejda Klein and Kevin Ragsdale as the nurse and doctor.
Streetcar opened on Broadway on December 3, 1947, directed by Elia Kazan and starring Jessica Tandy, Marlon Brando, Karl Malden and Kim Hunter. The London production opened in 1949, directed by Laurence Olivier. In 1951, the film adaptation, also directed by Kazan won four Academy Awards. A 1952 ballet with choreography by Valerie Bettis and music by Alex North, who had composed the music for the 1951 film, debuted at Her Majesty's Theatre in Montreal. In 1995, an opera was adapted and composed by André Previn with a libretto by Philip Littell. It had its premiere at the San Francisco Opera during the 1998–99 season and featured Renée Fleming as Blanche.
According to Heller, Streetcar is “about the death of the aristocratic old South and the rise of the working class, with its poverty and brutality — the destruction of one way of life and the ascent of another.”
Performances of A Streetcar Named Desire take place Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m., May 25 through July 7 (dark Thursday, July 4). There will be one additional performance on Wednesday, June 26 at 8 p.m. There will be two preview performances on Thursday, May 23 and Friday, May 24, both at 8 p.m. All tickets are $40 (reserved seating).OdysseyTheatre.com.
Presenter / Producer: Dance On Productions
Theater > Drama
Event Phone: 310-477-2055 x2
2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd.
West Los Angeles CA 90025
LA - Hollywood / Westside
Performance Dates: 5/23/2019 - 7/7/2019
Thurs - Sat. 8:00 pm Sun. 2:00 pm
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