Thursday, September 7, 2017

Moliere’s screwball comedy ‘The Learned Ladies’ to open CSC’s 2017-18 season


Centenary Stage Company launches 2017 – 18 professional theatre season October 6 through 22 in the Lackland Performing Arts Center with Freyda Thomas’ hilarious reimagining of Moliere’s penultimate screwball comedy, The Learned Ladies.

Set in the 1930s, this zany web of love stories, farcical romps and battle of the sexes keeps true to Moliere’s original while providing a smorgasbord of modern treats for contemporary audiences.  As the story unfolds it is evident the household of Chrysale and his wife Philamente is in absolute disarray.  Philamente has decided to dedicate herself and her home to the “life of the mind”, the pursuit of noble thought and the practice of intellectual rigor pushing aside her wifely duties.  Chrysale simply wants his dinner and to assert his place as head of the family.  Throw into the mix a questionably skilled poet who will not leave, an eccentric sister, a sexy maid, a hotheaded suitor to the youngest daughter, a frustrated older sister and numerous pretentious “hangers on” and this contemporary comedy has all the makings of a true screwball comedy.

CarlN_WallnauFeaturing a cast of professional actors from across the tri-state area, The Learned Ladies will be directed by Centenary Stage Company Artistic Director, Carl Wallnau (photo).  Wallnau’s recent acting credits include Dr. Watson in The Hound of the Baskervilles and Pandarus in Troilus and Cressida (Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival), and Mr. Mayhew in Witness for the Prosecution (Bristol Riverside). He has directed numerous productions including the world premieres of Inventing Montana, The Tillie Project and The Poetry of Pizza as well as the American premiere of A Laughing Matter and the New Jersey premieres of Below The Belt, Square One, Rounding Third, Marvin's Room and The English Bride, which later transferred to NYC for a run at 59E59.  Wallnau has been cited for outstanding direction in productions of Springtime for Henry, Ladies Man and Quartermaine's Terms among others.  He has worked at numerous regional theatres including Paper Mill Playhouse, The Arden Theatre, Second Stage in NYC, York Musical Theatre in NYC, People's Light, The Lark Theatre, The Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Hartford Stage, Bristol Riverside, Forum Theatre, Premiere Stages, Orlando Shakespeare Company, Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, Foothills Playhouse, Theatre 1812 in Philadelphia, Barnstormers and 14 months on the road with the First National Tour of Titanic.  In addition to serving as Centenary Stage Company Artistic Director, Wallnau also serves as Professor of Theatre Arts and Chairman of the Department of Fine Arts for Centenary University.

1007SitnikTheaterPerformances for The Learned Ladies run October 6 through October 22.  Specific performance dates are Fridays Oct 6, 13 and 20 at 8PM; Saturdays Oct 7, 14 and 21 at 8PM; Sundays Oct 8, 15 and 22 at 2PM; Wednesdays Oct 11 and 18 at 2PM and Thursdays Oct 12 and 19 at 7:30PM.  All performances will be held in the Sitnik Theatre of the Lackland Performing Arts Center.  Centenary Stage Company’s production the The Learned Ladies is sponsored by season sponsor Heath Village and series sponsor The House of the Good Shepherd.

Tickets for The Learned Ladies are $27.50 for adults on matinee and Friday evening performances.  Saturday evening ticket prices are $29.50 for adults.  Tickets for children under 12 are $17.50 for all performances.  Thursday evening performances are $27.50 for all seats with a Buy One/Get One rush ticket special.  To qualify for BOGO offer tickets must be purchased in person at the Centenary Stage Company box office as early as two hours prior to performance time.  BOGO offer not valid for advance ticket sales and may not be combined with any other offer or discount.  Centenary Stage Company also offers special Buffet Matinees on Wednesday afternoon performances for groups of 25 or more.  Enjoy lunch/brunch in one of our private dining rooms and receive discounted tickets to the performance.  To reserve a buffet matinee or to inquire about additional group sales contact the Centenary Stage Company box office directly.

For more information or to purchase tickets visit or call the Centenary Stage Company box office at (908) 979 – 0900.  The box office is located in the Lackland Performing Arts Center at 715 Grand Ave. Hackettstown, NJ.  The box office is open Mondaythrough Friday from 1 – 5 pm and two hours prior to each performance.  Centenary Stage Company can also be found across social media platforms; Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.  Like and follow to receive the latest in CSC news and special offers.

The 2017-2018 season of performing arts events at the Centenary Stage Company is made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts, the Shubert Foundation, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Sandra Kupperman Foundation, and CSC corporate sponsors, including Premier Season Sponsor Heath Village Retirement Community, Silver Sponsors Hackettstown Medical Center, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington), The Holiday Inn in Budd Lake, House of the Good Shepherd and Fulton Bank of New Jersey, and Centenary Stage Company members and supporters.

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