Rehearsals Underway for Tarragon Theatre World Premiere of
The Trouble with Mr. Adams
By Gord Rand
Directed by Lisa Peterson
Starring Philippa Domville, Chris Earle, Allegra Fulton and Sydney Owchar
TORONTO (October 6, 2015) – Rehearsals are underway for Tarragon Theatre’s world premiere of The Trouble with Mr. Adams by acclaimed actor and playwright Gord Rand. Directed by Lisa Peterson (Shaw Festival’s The Philanderer with Rand in the title role), this revealing comic tragedy previews from October 20, opens October 28 and runs to November 29 in Tarragon’s Extraspace.
The dirty tip of cupid’s arrow pierces high-school coach Mr. Adams when he falls for his too-young volleyball star – a love that threatens to destroy his life, family, and career. Tarragon Playwright-in-Residence Gord Rand exposes the male mid-life crisis in all its awkward and ruinous glory and stars an extremely talented quartet of actors: Philippa Domville, Chris Earle, Allegra Fulton and Sydney Owchar.
Chris Earle is Mr. Adams. He was a writer/performer for three years with Toronto’s legendary Second City comedy troupe. As an actor, his credits include Tarragon’s Russell Hill and the Dora-winning hit RADIO: 30 which went on to numerous successful Fringe and otherwise productions across the country as well as the New York Fringe, both of which he also wrote. He performed to acclaim in Theatre Columbus’ Doubt, and has also performed for Crow’s Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille and the Blyth Festival. His work as a playwright also includes Democrats Abroad (New York Fringe Excellence Award) and adaptations of Cinderella, Peter Pan and Robin Hood for Ross Petty Productions.
Philippa Domville portrays Mr. Adams’ wife, Peggy. She was last seen in Tarragon’s If We Were Birds. She was Lady Macbeth for Canadian Stage’s Shakespeare in High Park production of Macbeth and starred in the premiere of The Penelopiad for the Royal Shakespeare Company/National Arts Centre production. She earned a Dora nomination for her role in Time after Time: The Chet Baker Project (Crow’s/Theatre Passe Muraille) and was a recipient of a Christopher Plummer International Fellowship at Shakespeare’s Goble Theatre. On the lighter side, she appeared in the satirical web series Bad Dates with Stephen Harper.
The multi-awarded Allegra Fulton is Mr. Adams’ lawyer, Barbara. She was seen in Tarragon’s Scorched and in Frida K, her amazing portrayal of the Mexican painter for which she earned a Dora Award. She toured Frida K to raves in Mexico City, Off-Broadway, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, London and elsewhere. She was seen recently in Nightwood Theatre’s The Carousel and The List and shone as Goneril in King Lear for The Antaeus Company where she earned an L.A. Critics Award nomination.
Newcomer Sydney Owchar is Mercedes, the young volleyball star. Owchar is currently in her third year in the BFA Acting program at Ryerson University, and now makes her debut on a professional stage.
Director Lisa Peterson helmed The Philanderer starring Gord Rand at the Shaw Festival in 2014 which led to this engagement. She co-wrote/directed An Iliad (Obie Award) for New York Theatre Workshop; directed Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Major Barbara, Clybourne Park, Oedipus, Mrs Warren’s Profession for the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis; and staged Henry IV: Part 2 and Othello for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival; and more. She has directed world premieres by Tony Kushner, Beth Henley and Caryl Churchill for theatres across the U.S. including the Public, Manhattan Theater Club, Berkeley Rep, Seattle Rep, Hartford Stage, Yale Rep and Arena Stage. She spent 10 years as resident director at the Mark Taper Forum.
In talking about the play, Rand muses, “Forbidden love… Everybody falls in love with someone they shouldn’t. I was interested in what happens when you REALLY can’t follow through on that. What it can do to people is not always lovely and positive – and it’s not always easy to do the right thing when it all feels so good. I used to say I tried to write without fear of getting punched out – I hope that’s still true, and I hope my audience will enjoy what I’ve come up with and enter the spirit of debate and black humour – and choose not to punch me.”
A highly praised performer, Gord Rand is the Dora-nominated playwright of Pond Life as well as Orgy In the Lighthouse and The Trial of Thumbelina. He now makes his Tarragon Theatre playwrighting debut after starring last season in Tarragon’s Abyss and the Stratford Festival’s Oedipus Rex. He has acted on stages around the world, from San Francisco to Rwanda, including eight seasons at the Shaw Festival where he performed the title role of The Philanderer and starred in The Cherry Orchard, among other works. He performed the title role in Necessary Angel’s Hamlet (World Stage) and won a Dora Award for his performance in The Innocent Eye Test for Mirvish Productions at the Royal Alex. He performed in Volcano’s Goodness and when it toured to Rwanda, and made the feature documentary Goodness in Rwanda which won the Audience Choice Award at the 2013 ReelWorld Film Festival and Best Feature Documentary at the Thin Line Film Festival in Denton, Texas. He is working on another documentary called War Dog. He appears in David Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars and will be seen shortly in a recurring role on Space TV’s Orphan Black.
The set and lighting designer is Kimberly Purtell, costume designer is Charlotte Dean, and the sound design and original music are by Todd Charlton. The stage manager is Sandy Plunkett.
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