February 1 – 10, 2019
Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive
A comedy in four acts by Anton Chekhov
A new version by Stephen Karam
From a literal translation by Allison Horsely
Directed by Hassan Al Rawas
Bask in the timely and timeless brilliance of this immortal theatre classic by Russian playwright Anton Chekhov. The Gayev family are sociable, intelligent, caring and hopelessly in debt. Unless they can find the funds, their huge estate, including its much-loved cherry orchard, will go to a mortgagee auction. The entrepreneurial son of their ex-farmhand offers them a solution, but they balk at his proposal. Racked by indecision and unable to comprehend the huge social changes on the horizon, they spend one last summer on their beautiful country property, conjuring memories of the past to mask their fears of the future.
Chekhov’s endearing and everlasting tragicomedy in which a family’s cross generational dispute about the future of their beloved estate creates a clash between socialism and capitalism, legacy and reality in this sharp new adaptation by Stephen Karam, described by New York Magazine as “among the very best of his generation of playwrights.”
HASSAN AL RAWAS (Director) hails from Beirut, Lebanon but was raised in Kuwait City, Kuwait. He is currently in his third year in the MFA in Directing Program at Northwestern University. He is the founder of the IMPROVengers, Kuwait’s first and only improv comedy troupe, and he is a founding member of SiK Productions, Kuwait’s premier English language community theatre. Past directing credits include SYLVIA by A.R. Gurney, LES MISÉRABLES, Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST and a stage adaptation of the novel, SAMARKAND by French-Lebanese author, Amin Maalouf. Since coming to pursue his MFA in Directing at Northwestern, Hassan has directed THE ORANGE GARDEN by Joanna Garner, AN EVENING OF ARABIC PLAYS, and he assisted Bill Brown on a production of Stephen Sondheim’s COMPANY. He will next be directing Stephen Karam’s new adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Northwestern. Hassan was recently the assistant director on the world premiere of WITCH by Jen Silverman directed by Marti Lyons at Writers Theatre, and will later be assisting David Catlin on Lookingglass Theatre’s production of FRANKENSTEIN. In addition to pursuing his MFA, Hassan is also in the PhD Certificate Program in Middle East/North African Studies at Northwestern. Hassan holds a MA in Theatre from Northwestern University and a BA in Communication Arts from Xavier University.
ANTON CHEKHOV (Playwright, Russian 1860 – 1904) was a Russian playwright and short-story writer, who is considered to be among the greatest writers of short fiction in history. His career as a playwright produced four classics, and his best short stories are held in high esteem by writers and critics. Along with Henrik Ibsen and August Strindberg, Chekhov is often referred to as one of the three seminal figures in the birth of early modernism in the theatre. Chekhov practiced as a medical doctor throughout most of his literary career: “Medicine is my lawful wife”, he once said, “and literature is my mistress.” This plays include THE SEAGULL, UNCLE VANYA, THE BEAR, IVÀNOV, THREE SISTERS, among others.
STEPHEN KARAM (Adaptor) is the Tony Award-winning author of THE HUMANS, SONS OF THE PROPHET and SPEECH & DEBATE. He has written a film adaptation of Chekhov’s THE SEAGULL starring Annette Bening which will be released by Sony Picture Classics in 2018. He is an OBIE Award winner and a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist. His adaptation of Chekhov’s THE CHERRY ORCHARD premiered on Broadway as part of Roundabout’s 2016 season. Recent honors include two Drama Critics Circle, Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Awards; a Lucille Lortel Award, Drama League Award and Hull-Warriner Award. Stephen is a graduate of Brown University and grew up in Scranton, PA.
Scenic Designer: Woongjin Oh
Costume Designer: Raquel Adorno
Lighting Designer: Jackie Fox
Sound Designer: Connor Ciesil
Dramaturg: Chelsea Taylor
Stage Manager: Olivia Zapter-Charrette
Friday, February 1 – 7:30PM
Saturday, February 2 – 7:30PM
Sunday, February 3 – 2:00PM
Thursday, February 7 – 7:30PM
Friday, February 8 – 7:30PM
Saturday, February 9 – 7:30PM
Sunday, February 10 – 2:00PM
Seniors (62+) $23
Area Educator $23
NU Faculty/Staff/Emeriti $20
Full-Time Student $10
NU Student $6/Adv. $10/Door
The Wirtz Center and this production of “The Cherry Orchard” are proud to participate in Chicago Theatre Week with $15 tickets available for select performances: Thursday, Feb 7, Friday Feb 8, and Sunday Feb 10. Used the code “CTW19” when ordering online, by phone or at the Box Office. Subject to availability and discount is not available at the door. For more information about special offers on more than 100 Chicago productions, visit the Chicago Theatre Week website. Chicago Theatre Week is presented by the League of Chicago Theatres with support from Choose Chicago.