Press Room

THE FOREIGNER PRESS RELEASE

November 27, 2007
For: IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Heather Nowlin
(801) 581-7222

heather.nowlin@ptc.utah.edu

OR: Kirsten Park

(801) 581-6270

kirsten.park@ptc.utah.edu

PIONEER THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS
The Foreigner

By Larry Shue

Pioneer Theatre Company presents the side-splitting comedy The Foreigner by Larry Shue.

Betty Meek’s fishing lodge in rural Georgia is a sleepy little place – until Charlie Baker shows up, speaking a strange language and claiming to understand no English. Charlie suddenly becomes privy to all the town’s secrets, with unexpected and hilarious results.

Pioneer Theatre Company Artistic Director Charles Morey directs the production. Anne Stewart Mark assistant directs. Mr. Morey has directed more than seventy productions for Pioneer Theatre Company, including Paint Your Wagon, The Ladies Man, Chicago, Pride and Prejudice, Humble Boy, and Les Misérables. Regionally he has directed for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Asolo Theatre Company, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Meadow Brook Theatre, American Stage Festival, PCPA Theaterfest and the Utah Shakespearean Festival. Mr. Morey is also a successful playwright, whose works have gone on to successful productions in theatres across the country.

The all-Equity cast includes Jim Wisniewski as Charlie Baker, the “foreigner” of the play’s title. Mr. Wisniewski’s credits include shows with New York’s Adobe Theatre Company, Soho Repertory, The Working Theatre and American Globe. Regionally, he has been seen in roles in Proof, Much Ado About Nothing, Dial M for Murder, and Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure. His film and television credits include The Kingdom, Law & Order, and The Sopranos.

Lauren Elise McCord plays the sympathetic debutante Catherine Simms, who finds herself confiding in her “exotic” new friend. No stranger to the role, Ms. McCord understudied and performed Catherine Simms in NYC’s Roundabout Theatre production of The Foreigner with Matthew Broderick and Frances Sternhagen. Some of her other roles include Roxanne in Len Jenkin’s Margo Veil, Célimène in Le Misanthrope, and Mrs. Cheveley in An Ideal Husband.

The kind-hearted fishing lodge owner Betty Meeks is played by Darrie Lawrence. Ms. Lawrence last appeared at Pioneer Theatre Company in The Last Night of Ballyhoo. She has appeared on Broadway in Steel Magnolias and Sam Shepherd’s Buried Child. Her National Tours include Doubt and Great Expectations. Off-Broadway, Ms. Lawrence has appeared in the premieres of The Other Side, Portraits, and Long Island Sound.

Charlie’s friend and confidante, exuberant Staff Sergeant “Froggy” LeSueur, will be played by Max Robinson. Mr. Robinson recently portrayed Wilmer Wagner in PTC’s Paint Your Wagon, and last season he was seen as the conniving innkeeper Thénardier in Les Misérables. He has appeared in film, television, and over 95 productions at Pioneer Theatre Company.

Other members of the ensemble include Michael Daniel Anderson as Ellard Simms, Catherine’s younger brother. Mr. Anderson’s regional credits include Moon Over Buffalo, Bye Bye Birdie, and Twelfth Night. Jeremy Holm plays Owen Musser; Mr. Holm has appeared regionally at such theatres as Milwaukee Repertory, The Shakespeare Theatre, and Colorado Shakespeare Festival. Catherine’s fiancée, the Rev. David Marshall Lee, will be played by Christopher Kelly. Mr. Kelly’s New York credits include the Drama Desk nominated production of Moby Dick and New Victory Theatre’s production of Macbeth.

PTC’s Resident Scenic Designer George Maxwell designs the set for The Foreigner. Mr. Maxwell recently designed the set for Paint Your Wagon at Pioneer Theatre Company; his designs last season included Chicago, You Can’t Take It With You and Les Misérables. A member of United Scenic Artists, Mr. Maxwell has also designed sets for Utah Opera Company and the Utah Shakespearean Festival.

Costumes for The Foreigner are designed by resident costume designer Brenda Van Der Weil. Ms. Van Der Weil has designed several dozen shows for PTC, the Babcock Theatre, and the Classical Greek Theatre Festival. Before moving to Salt Lake City, she worked with Seattle Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Alabama Shakespeare and Utah Shakespearean Festivals.

Lighting design is by Peter L. Willardson. He has illuminated over 120 productions for PTC since his first design of The King and I in 1972.  Mr. Willardson is the Resident Lighting Designer for PTC, and Lighting Professor for the University of Utah Theatre Department.

Sound design is by PTC resident sound designer Joe Payne. Mr. Payne is in his eighth season as Resident Sound Designer for Pioneer Theatre Company. He has designed sound and/or composed music for more than 100 productions in theatres throughout the country.

Hair and make-up designer Amanda French, PTC resident designer, has worked for theatres all over the west. She is a contributing writer in the ninth edition of Stage Makeup by Richard Corson and James Glavan and is a featured artist in The Costume Technician’s Handbook by Rosemary Ingham and Liz Covey.

Pioneer Theatre Company, Utah’s premier resident professional theatre, performs at Roy W. and Elizabeth E. Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre, located on the University of Utah campus at 300 South and 1400 East in Salt Lake City, easily accessible by TRAX light rail. Free parking is also available and the theatre is equipped with an elevator, handicap parking, hearing assistance devices and other easy-access features.

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MEDIA PHOTO SHOOT: There will be a media photo shoot at 5:30 p.m. on November 27, 2007, at Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre, 300 S. 1400 E., SLC. Please RSVP by calling 581-6270.

PHOTOS AVAILABLE TO DOWNLOAD: High-resolution color photos of this production will be available for media use on the PTC website beginning Wednesday, November 28, 2007 after 3:00 p.m. Go directly to Foreigner-photos.html

FILMING FOR TELEVISION: Filming a short segment of the production during Preview or Opening Night for press use can be arranged. Call 581-6270.

INTERVIEWS: Interviews with the cast and artistic staff are available. Call 581-7222 or 581-6270.

PRESS TOURS: Tours of the set for the press are available. Call 581-6270.

WHO:              Pioneer Theatre Company

WHAT:           The Foreigner

WHEN:           December 7 – December 22, 2007

TIMES:           Mondays – Thursdays, 7:30 p.m.

Fridays and Saturdays, 8:00 p.m.

Saturday matinees, 2:00 p.m.

WHERE:         Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre

300 South 1400 East, Salt Lake City

PRICE:           $21 – $39; Children K – 12 are half price on Mondays and Tuesdays.

MORE INFO: Box Office (801) 581-6961. The Box Office is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Monday – Friday, and Saturdays when there are performances.

CAST:

Michael Daniel Anderson……………………………………… Ellard Simms

Jeremy Holm……………………………………………………… Owen Musser

Christopher Kelly……………………………………………….. Rev. David Marshall Lee

Darrie Lawrence…………………………………………………. Betty Meeks

Lauren Elise McCord………………………………………….. Catherine Simms

Max Robinson……………………………………………………. Froggy LeSueur

Jim Wisniewski…………………………………………………… Charlie Baker

ARTISTIC TEAM:

Director…………………………………………………………….. Charles Morey

Assistant Director……………………………………………….. Anne Stewart Mark

Set Designer………………………………………………………. George Maxwell

Costume Designer………………………………………………. Brenda Van Der Weil

Lighting Designer………………………………………………… Peter L. Willardson

Sound Designer………………………………………………….. Joe Payne

Wig and Make-up Designer………………………………….. Amanda French