Tarragon Theatre presents the World Premiere of
By Fabrizio Filippo
Directed by Richard Rose
Starring John Bourgeois, Rachel Cairns, Fabrizio Filippo, Kelli Fox, Maggie Huculak, Tony Nappo, Alon Nashman
TORONTO (March 28, 2016) – Rehearsals are underway for Tarragon Theatre’s world premiere of The Summoned by celebrated Canadian actor and screenwriter Fabrizio Filippo, now making his Tarragon playwriting debut with this twisted technological thriller that takes audiences on a whirlwind ride from the past and into the future of the digital age. Directed by Tarragon’s Artistic Director Richard Rose, The Summoned previews from April 20, opens April 27 and runs to May 29 in Tarragon’s Mainspace.
Following the death of a billionaire tech visionary and head of a mega-empire, the most important people in his life are summoned to a budget airport hotel for the reading of his will. They know their lives are about to change, but what
transpires is nothing short of a paradigm shift in the very future of technology and human nature. Just how far will tech take us?
The outstanding ensemble for this intriguing and spirited story features:
John Bourgeois (Tarragon’s Bea’s Niece, Necessary Angel’s The Half of It, Studio 180’s God of Carnage and The Normal Heart) as the mega-tech company’s president;
Vancouver-born Rachel Cairns (Tarragon debut; Blyth Festival’s Fury, Seeds) as the girlfriendish love interest to
Fabrizio Filippo (Tarragon debut; macIDea’s This is Our Youth, dir. Woody Harrelson; lead role in CTV mini-series Lives of the Saints opposite Sophia Loren) as Aldous, the narrator to the story and son and helper to Annie, the hotel manager;
Kelli Fox (Tarragon’s Lion In The Streets, Moliere, The Misanthrope; 13 seasons with the Shaw Festival including 2015’s Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures; 2016 recipient of the Gina Wilkinson Prize for an Emerging Female Director) as Laura, a Silicone Valley high-powered lawyer;
Maggie Huculak (Tarragon’s Cake and Dirt, Faust; Soulpepper’s A Christmas Carol, Antigone; Necessary Angel’s Divisidero, Half Life, Tamara) as Annie Mann, Aldous’ mother and a professional computer brainiac in her youth;
Tony Nappo (Tarragon’s Mustard, The Golden Dragon, The Real World?; Mirvish’s God of Carnage; Soulpepper’s Twelve Angry Men; Peggy Pickit Sees the Face of God at Canadian Stage) as Quentin, the company’s intense security consultant;
and the voice of Alon Nashman (Tarragon’s Much Ado About Nothing, Stratford Festival’s Hirsch, Canadian Stage (Picasso at the Lapin Agile, THIS – Toronto Theatre Critics Award) on the security walkie- talkie.
Fabrizio Filippo, currently developing a new comedy with Fox Television, makes his Tarragon playwrighting debut with The Summoned. His previous plays include Waiting for Lewis (Theatre Direct, a 2000 Chalmers Award finalist) and The Gospels Accordingly (Tripwire / SummerWorks). He also wrote on NBC’s half-hour comedy Working the Engels, co-wrote the true crime indie film Perfect Sisters starring Abigail Breslin and Mira Sorvino as well as Too Late to Say Good-bye for Lifetime Movie Network starring Rob Lowe. Before that he co-created, wrote, starred and directed various episodes throughout three seasons of the half-hour Showcase TV comedy Billable Hours. As an actor, some of his past acting credits include the lead role in the CTV mini-series Lives of the Saints starring opposite Sophia Loren, the violin prodigy Ethan Gold on the award-winning Showtime series Queer as Folk as well as three episodes as Buffy’s rebound boyfriend in Buffy, The Vampire Slayer. His best-known leading-role stage work includes the critically acclaimed Canadian premiere of This Is Our Youth (directed by actor Woody Harrelson) and Steel Kiss (directed by the late, great Ken McDougall). He just finished directing a pilot for streaming about paramedics called Save Me which – fingers crossed – will premiere in January of next year. He recently directed a film that screened in competition at the Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival and was also recently nominated for a Best Performance Canadian Screen Award for CTV’s streaming series Guidestones.
Says Filippo, “The idea for The Summoned started from an unlikely source. I was musing on the possibility of adapting Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard and was captivated by the idea that it is a play about the end of a way of life due, in no small part, to advancements in technology at the turn of the 20th century. (NOTE: The Summoned is in no way an adaptation of The Cherry Orchard.) At the same time, I was reading a book by Ray Kurzweil called The Age Of Spiritual Machines (about the direction technology is moving) that struck me also as something about the end life as we know it, and how we currently live in an age where the game is being changed over and over again. And, finally, I moved onto another book about the birth of the personal computer called Hackers and fell in love with the time in the 1970s where unwashed, barefoot, hairy geeks were changing the world from their garages with bits of hardware and soldering irons. You add all that together, and The Summoned was born.”
Director Richard Rose is the Artistic Director of Tarragon Theatre. Prior to joining the Tarragon in 2002, Richard was Founding Artistic Director at Necessary Angel (a position he held from 1978–2002), and spent ten seasons directing at the Stratford Festival. He has directed plays across Canada, the United States and in London’s West End in styles ranging from the environmental to the classical. Rose is well known for developing new work, including four plays that won the Governor General’s Award and nine other nominated plays. This season for Tarragon, he has directed the remount of Tarragon’s Schaubühne (Berlin) adaptation of Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People and the premiere of Wormwood by Andrew Kushnir. He is a four-time Dora award winner for direction and production.
Lighting and set design for The Summoned is by Jason Hand, costume design by Charlotte Dean, sound design by Dylan Green and video design by Kurt Firla. The stage manager is Kate Sandeson.
Opens April 27 and runs to May 29, 2016 (Previews from April 20)
Tarragon Theatre’s Mainspace, 30 Bridgman Avenue, Toronto, M5R 1X3
Tuesday-Saturday at 8pm; Sunday at 2:30pm; select Saturdays April 30, May 7, 14 at 2:30pm;
Tickets can be purchased by calling Tarragon Patron Services at 416.531.1827 or by visiting www.tarragontheatre.com
Regular Tickets range from $28-$60 with discounts for seniors, students, groups and artsworkers.
Rush Tickets: For every performance excluding opening night, specially priced $15 Rush Tickets will be sold (subject to availability) in person at the Box Office two hours before show time.
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Tarragon Theatre’s 2015/2016 Season Sponsor is BMO Financial Group. The 2015/16 Season Media Sponsor is NOW Magazine, and 2015/16 Radio Sponsor is The New Classical FM and Zoomer Radio. The Summoned is generously supported by AIMIA.
Tarragon Theatre gratefully acknowledges annual operating support from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Toronto Arts Council.
Media refer: Dianne Weinrib / DW Communications 416-703-5479 firstname.lastname@example.org