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Orlando Shakespeare Theater and Holocaust Center to Present 'The Best Of Enemies'
Stirring new production turns sworn enemies into unlikely friends
Theater. Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the passage and signing of the Civil Rights Act, the powerful new play by Mark St. Germain exposes the poison of prejudice and the beauty of friendship. Single tickets to The Best of Enemies ($10 - $45) are available now by calling (407) 447-1700 ext. 1, visiting www.orlandoshakes.org, or in person at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center (812 East Rollins Street).
Based on the bestselling novel by Osha Gray Davidson, The Best of Enemies is a true story about the relationship between C.P. Ellis, a Grand Cyclops of the KKK, and Ann Atwater, an African-American civil rights activist, during the 1971 court-ordered desegregation of the Durham, North Carolina schools. Forced to co-lead a steering committee that represents all community viewpoints, Atwater and Ellis must face each other, and in doing so, are forced to face the best and worst in themselves.
“After reading The Best of Enemies, I knew that it needed to be part of our 26th Season,” said Orlando Shakes Artistic Director Jim Helsinger. “The play’s depiction of hate and racism may seem so far from where we’ve come, but the lessons these characters learn will still prove timely for today’s audiences.”
The Best of Enemies features Corey Allen as Bill Riddick. Recent New York credits include Kid Don’t Cry (Drama League DirectorFest)
The production also features Avis-Marie Barnes as Ann Atwater. Central Florida credits include The Giver and The Miracle Worker (Orlando Repertory Theatre); Sonnets of an Old Century and Yellowman (Mad Cow Theatre); As it is in Heaven (The Vine Theatre); and Seven Guitars and The Old Settler (The People’s Theatre). Extensive film and television credits include Jeepers Creepers, Graceland, Burn Notice, Army Wives, and The Glades.
Additional casting to be announced.
Director of New Play Development Mark Routhier will direct the production, coming off the critical success of last spring’s Rolling World Premiere, Pluto. The Orlando Shakes production team includes Scenic Designer Bob Philips, Lighting Designer Kevin Griffin, and Costume Designer Kristina Tollefson. Sound Designer to be announced.
PERFORMANCE INFORMATION AND RELATED EVENTS
Preview Dates: October 15 & 16 at 7:30 p.m.
Opening Date: October 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Senior Matinees: October 22 & 29 at 2:00 p.m.; November 5 & 12 at 2:00 p.m.
$20 Under 30: October 24 at 7:30 p.m.
OPENING NIGHT PARTY - Friday, October 17
Mingle with members of the audience and enjoy free appetizers from a local eatery prior to the performance. The party begins at 6:15 p.m. and is free to all ticket holders. No RSVP necessary.
OPENING NIGHT PRE-SHOW CHAT - Friday, October 17
Join the director and members of the artistic team in the Patron's Room at 6:45 p.m. for a brief, informative discussion about the creative process.
SUNDAY TALK BACK - Sunday, October 26
Stay after the 2:00 p.m. matinee performance for an informal Q&A with the cast and members of the design team.
SPECIAL EVENT PERFORMANCE - Sunday, October 26
A special performance of The Best of Enemies, sponsored by Solomon F. Schick & Associates and Orlando Hard Rock Café, will take place on October 26, 2014 at 7:30 p.m., with all proceeds benefitting the Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida. This ticketed event includes a pre-show reception beginning at 6:00 p.m. and a special introduction by Ms. Pamela Woodley, whose mother was a community and civil rights activist, and among the first to join the 1962 lawsuit to desegregate Orange County Public Schools. General admission tickets ($100) can be reserved by calling (407) 447-1700 or purchased online at www.orlandoshakes.org.
Tuesday - Saturday at 7:30 p.m.; Sunday at 2:00 p.m. – $20, $35, $45
Preview Performances and Senior Matinees – $10, $17, $22
Group Sales: 20% off groups of 10+
Student Rush: $12 - 30 minutes prior to show w/ valid student ID
Military/Student Price: $10 off single ticket prices (Only available in Sections A and B)
The Best of Enemies is presented in partnership with the Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida through the generosity of Valerie and Jim Shapiro.
Orlando Shakespeare Theater is supported by United Arts of Central Florida, host of www.power2give.org/