Fairfield University's Theatre Fairfield ends season with Chekhovian masterpiece Three Sisters opening April 22


Theatre Fairfield (TF), Fairfield University's resident production company, closes its 2008-2009 season with Anton Chekhov's masterwork "Three Sisters," in a contemporary translation by Laurence Senelick, a Russian Theater expert, translator and scholar at Tufts University. The show runs at the PepsiCo Theatre on Wednesday, April 22 through Saturday, April 25 at 8:00 p.m., with 2:00 p.m. matinee performances on Saturday, April 25 and Sunday, April 26.

"Three Sisters" explores relevant contemporary issues that seethe with the dynamics of a family coping with financial and personal loss. In his writings on Chekhov, Senelick has stated that the universal humanity of Chekhov's characters and innovation in craft link him to the most modern ideas in drama. According to Senelick, Chekhov's great innovation is the melding of comedy and tragedy in a single play and "Three Sisters" is a perfect example of the honesty of mixed emotions that characters experience when they laugh and cry in the same instance.

The rehearsal process for this production has been a roller coaster of engaged "ahs, ahahs" and laughter. Director Yvonne Conybeare, Fairfield's visiting professor of theatre, says, "It is the comedy that is most surprising to the students as they unearth it." Adamtroy Newson, who plays Kulygin, connects "Three Sisters to "Waiting For Godot" by Samuel Beckett, one of his favorite plays. Newson says, "It is so absurd and sad and funny all at the same time, which makes for a very engrossing night of theatre!"

Chekhov wrote that this play was about four strong women: three sisters and a sister-in-law. Seasoned TF actors, Alex Burke, Kira Gustafson, Anne Krane and Sarah Zybert play these roles. In addition to Newson, Alex Conroy, Pat LaRiviere, Korey McEneany, Jack McNamara, Nicholas Phillips, Pranav Phull and Peter Sweeney portray the male characters. Gabrielle Arens, Casey Grambo and Michelle Mafeo round out the company. The production staff includes Pamela Perrimon as stage manager, set design by distinguished alumna Michelle Fields '04, lighting design by Lynne Chase and Julie Leavitt designs the beautiful 19th-century costumes.

During her time at Fairfield, Conybeare has also directed TF's "On The Spot," the resident Improv troupe.

For tickets call the Quick Center Box Office at (203) 254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396. For more information visit quickcenter.com. Tickets are $12 general admission, $6 for seniors and University staff, and $5 for students.

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Media Contact: Joan Grant, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2950, jgrant@fairfield.edu

Posted on March 31, 2009

Vol. 41, No. 280