July 10, 2013

The Mystery Of Irma Vep

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Bay Street Theatre presents The Mystery Of Irma Vep, written by Charles Ludlam and directed by Kenneth Elliott, as the second production in its 2013 summer Mainstage season. The Mystery Of Irma Vep stars Tom Aulino and five time Obie Award winning actor David Greenspan.

Irma Vep is an extremely funny comedy. "We are incredibly happy to have both Tom and David as a two man cast playing eight different characters with over 35 different costume changes," says Gary Hygom, Producer for Bay Street Theatre. "Under Elliott's direction, Vep will have audiences crying with laughter." This is not an understatement. The cast brings to life this hilarious story.

The Mystery Of Irma Vep is a satire of several theatrical and film genres, including Victorian melodrama, farce and the Alfred Hitchcock film Rebecca (1940). The play is written for two actors who, between them, play eight characters of both sexes.

It is Kenneth Elliott's second time directing at Bay Street Theatre. He is delighted to return to the Bay Street Theatre where he directed Home Fires, which was later retitled Swingtime Canteen for its off-Broadway transfer.

The Mystery Of Irma Vep was first produced by Ludlam's Ridiculous Theatrical Company, opening off-off-Broadway in New York City's Greenwich Village in September 1984 and closing in April 1986. It starred Ludlam as Lady Enid, the new mistress of the manor, and a butler, and Everett Quinton as Lord Edgar Hillcrest, the master of the manor, and the housekeeper (among other characters). The "Cast and Crew" won a Special Drama Desk Award. Ludlam and Quinton won the 1985 Obie Award for Ensemble Performance.

The show was later produced off-Broadway at the Westside Theatre from September 1998 through July 1999, with Quinton and Stephen DeRosa. The production won the 1999 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Revival, along with Outer Critics Circle Award nominations for Outstanding Revival of a Play, Outstanding Lighting Design (John Lee Beatty), and Outstanding Costume Design (William Ivey Long).

In 1991, The Mystery Of Irma Vep was the most produced play in the United States, and in 2003, it became the longest-running play ever produced in Brazil.

The Mystery Of Irma Vep runs through July 28 and tickets are $59.50 and $69.50. For more information call the Box Office at 631-725-9500 or at www.baystreet.org.

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