Centaur Theatre Company
The Quebec English-language Premiere of
Written by Bruce Norris
Directed by Ellen David
April 4 to 30, 2017
Matthew Gagnon, Marcel Jeannin, Liana Montoro, Lisa Bronwyn Moore,
Eleanor Noble, Kwasi Songui and Harry Standjofski
Set & Costume Designer Michael Eagan | Lighting Designer Guy Simard
Stage Manager Michael Sinclair |Assistant Stage Manager Jacynthe Lalonde
Assistant to the Director Laurent McCuaig-Pitre
Montreal, March 24, 2017 – Centaur Theatre presents the Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Clybourne Park, written by American playwright, Bruce Norris, from April 4 to 30, 2017. When the play first hit stages in 2009, it garnered almost every honour the theatre world could bestow upon it, including the Tony Award, and the Evening Standard and Laurence Olivier awards (UK) for Best Play. Actor and director, Ellen David, directs this Quebec English-language premiere.
“Superb, elegantly written, and hilarious.”
– The New Yorker
Clybourne Park takes audiences back in time to 1959 Chicago in an all-white, middle class neighbourhood. Spinning off of Lorraine Hansberry’s seminal play, A Raisin in the Sun, Bev and Russ have sold their house to a black family, upsetting the ‘social order’ and creating havoc among their friends. Act Two fast-forwards to 2009 where the tables are turned as a white couple attempts to buy and tear down the very same house to erect a more pretentious home, now in an all-black community, triggering identical issues fifty years later. Clybourne Park looks at prejudice, property, and political correctness, then and now, in a blisteringly funny and timely satire.
“an evening of ebullient provocation
– The Guardian (UK)
“What I love about this play,” said Centaur Artistic and Executive Director, Roy Surette, “is its theatricality, starting out in the 50s in the first act and then abruptly plunging us into the same setting fifty years later. Also, every day, the relevancy of this play and its themes become more significant.”
“When I saw Black Theatre Workshop’s 1979 production of A Raisin in the Sun, it represented exactly the kind of theatre I wanted to do,” said director Ellen David. “When I read Clybourne Park thirty years later, it had the same effect on me; it perfectly exemplifies why we do theatre. This play came out just as Obama was entering office. Its themes of racism, ownership and community were hot topics at that time and are even more so in the current political climate. The last line of Langston Hughes’ poem, Harlem, from which A Raisin in the Sun got its name, stuck with me as a powerful image for Clybourne Park, which to me depicts what happens when the dream explodes.”
“Clybourne Park will offend you, delight you and […] break your heart.”
Close to 120 artists auditioned for this production, in which every actor has at least two roles. Matthew Gagnon, making his Centaur Theatre debut, is joined by Centaur familiar face, Marcel Jeannin (God of Carnage, The Comedy of Errors) and former Montrealer, Liana Montoro (4,000 Miles). The cast also includes Lisa Bronwyn Moore, first seen at Centaur in the 90s, Eleanor Noble, last seen in Social Studies, and musical theatre and dramatic actor, Kwasi Songui. Rounding out the team is Harry Standjofski, well-known at Centaur for fantastic annual contribution to Urban Tales.
Veteran designer for theatre, ballet and opera, Michael Eagan (God of Carnage, Age of Arousal), designs the vintage and contemporary costumes and the same family home in two different decades. Guy Simard, who has designed more than five hundred opera and theatre productions, provides the lighting. In demand across Canada, Michael Sinclair (Venus in Fur) returns to Centaur to stage manage, assisted by a familiar face behind the scenes, Jacynthe Lalonde (Constellations, Last Night at the Gayety). Laurent McCuaig-Pitre, seen recently in his solo show, A Perfect Picture, at this year’s Wildside Festival, is Ms. David’s assistant.
Tickets available at www.centaurtheatre.com | 514-288-3161