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Monday, November 20, 2017

‘Lady Windermere’s Fan’on Nov. 30 at URI

Production of Oscar Wilde play explores Victorian upper crust society

Lady Windermere's FanAs the University of Rhode Island celebrates its 125th anniversary, the Theatre Department will perform a play that was written the same year as the University was founded, 1892, when its production of “Lady Windermere’s Fan” by Oscar Wilde opens Nov. 30.

Set in 1893, the production portrays a Wildean world of London’s upper crust Victorian society, focusing on Lord and Lady Windermere — Arthur and Margaret — lovingly married for two years. 

Lady Windermere sees the world in black and white, never gray; good or evil, never in between. 

Just 21, she is about to celebrate her coming of age at a soiree to which her husband requests she invite the center of gossip, Mrs. Erlynne. Margaret refuses. 

Arthur insists on helping Mrs. Erlynne gain access to society. 

Events escalate in the next 24 hours, during which time Lady Windermere learns what truly makes a good woman. 

The questions of who is Mrs. Erlynne and what of Lady Windermere’s fan are central to the story. In this world of manners and morals — how things seem and how they are — it is the birthday gift and how it is handled that tells the tale.

Performances of “Lady Windermere’s Fan” will run Nov. 30 through Dec. 2 and Dec. 7 through Dec. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the Robert E. Will Theatre of the URI Fine Arts Center, 105 Upper College Road on the Kingston Campus, with additional showings Dec. 3 and Dec. 10 at 2 p.m.

There will be a free panel discussion, titled “The Making of a Good Woman,” following the performance Sunday, Dec. 3.  

The panelists are Jeannette Riley, dean of the URI College of Arts and Sciences; David T. Howard, professor in the URI Theatre Department; Michael Honhart, professor of history; and Bryna Wortman, a professor in the URI Theatre Department who will serve as moderator.

General admission is $20, and $15 for students, URI faculty and staff, and seniors. To purchase tickets, visit web.uri.edu/theatre, or call (401) 874-5843.

Bryna Wortman (“Good People,” “Seminar,” “The Great Gatsby”) will direct; costume design is by professor David T. Howard; set design is by URI Theatre alumna, Cheryl deWardener; lighting design is by associate professor Christian Wittwer; and sound design is by guest artist Michael Hyde.

CAST

Actor, Character, Hometown
Emily Turtle, Lady Windermere, Barrington
Jake Clarke, Lord Windermere, Narragansett
Daniel F. Greene, Lord Darlington, North Easton, Mass.
Catia Ramos, Mrs. Erlynne, Providence
Matthew Oxley, Sir James Royston, Narragansett
John T. Cunha, Lord Augustus, Middletown
Jessilyn Ring, Lady Stutfield, Coventry
Valerie Ferris, Duchess of Berwick, Staten Island, NY
Brooks A. Shatraw, Mr. Cecil Graham, North Smithfield
Katharine Templeton, Miss Graham, Providence
Erin McGowan, Lady Paisley, Zionsville, Penn.
Emma Becker, Rosalie, Tiverton
Olivia Paluzzi, Lady Agatha Carlisle, Braintree, Mass.
Madison Cook-Hines, Mrs. Cowper-Cowper, Coventry
Dean Hernandez, Arthur Bowden, East Providence
Erik Schlicht, Parker, Cumberland
Emily Maclean, Lady Jedburgh, Hopkinton
Josh Raymo, Mr. Dumby, Portsmouth
Arturo Puentes, Mr. Hopper, Pawtucket
Colin Cleary, Lord Paisley, Harvard, Mass.
Emily Carter, Lady Plymdale, Hope
David Richards, Footman, Newport
Maggie Papa, Assistant Director, Wakefield
Emily Carter, Assistant to Assistant Director, Hope

Understudies

Erin McGowan, Mrs. Erlynne, Zionsville, Penn.
Dean Hernandez, Parker, East Providence
Josh Raymo Mr., Ceil Graham, Portsmouth
Arturo Puentes, Lord Darlington, Pawtucket
Colin Cleary, Mr. Hopper, Harvard, Mass.
David Richards, Mr. Dumby, Newport
Ariana Pacheco, Duchess of Berwick, North Kingstown