Fort Worth — For his second season as artistic director of Fort Worth's Circle Theatre, Matthew Gray has more surprises in store. The notable one in the 2020 season is August Wilson's landmark Fences, which might be the first local professional production of that play by a non-black theater in the last 25 years or so. There is another black playwright on the season: Michael Gene Sullivan, whose adaptation of George Orwell's 1984 is cleverly programmed to run during the 2020 election. (Note: This is not the same adaptation that was on Broadway in 2017.)
The season also has two regional premieres by women playwrights, Selina Fillinger's Something Clean (Fillinger's Cinched and Strapped were recently seen at Theatre Three), and Audrey Cefaly's play with music The Last Wide Open, which features music by Matthew M. Nielson. Cefaly's play Alabaster will be produced by Kitchen Dog Theater as part of a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere in February 2020.
The season opens with the Tarrant County professional premiere of One Man, Two Guvnors, Richard Bean's loose adaptation of Goldoni's 18th century farce Servant of Two Masters.
Below is the news release, with shows, dates, descriptions and subscription information:
Circle Theatre, a professional regional theatre located in Fort Worth’s Sundance Square, is proud to announce its 39th season and second under Artistic Director, Matthew Gray. 2020’s line up will include a comedy, two regional premieres, a modern classic, and a political thriller.
"We are exhilarated for our 39th season. The season addresses our perceptions of reality. I've chosen plays that are funny, poignant, delightful and powerful,” says Matthew Gray, Artistic Director. “They also ultimately ask what is the truth vs. what is our version of the truth and what do we do to reconcile them? My goal, as always, is to provide Circle audiences with productions that are entertaining, fearless and original in their theatricality. I can’t wait to see you at the theatre."
ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS
By Richard Bean
Directed by Joel Ferrell
January 30 - March 7, 2020
Previews: Jan. 30, 31, Feb. 1 (matinee)
Opening Night: February 1
Brighton, England. 1963. Francis Henshall finds himself in the employ of TWO men: gangster, Roscoe Crabbe and Stanley Stubbers—mortal enemies of one another. However, it turns out that “Roscoe” is already deceased and Roscoe’s twin sister, Rachel, has been posing as him. Fighting a mounting sense of confusion and distractions, Francis frantically tries to keep Roscoe and Stubbers apart. How long can he keep this charade up? Be sure to catch this splendidly silly comedy that is making its way to the Circle stage.
By Selina Fillinger
April 23 - May 16, 2020
Previews: April 23, 24, 25 (matinee)
Opening Night: April 25
Adult language & sensitive subject matter
Wash the dishes. Mop the floors. Change the sheets. Change the past. Charlotte is a wife and mother who'll try anything to put her family back together. Selina Fillinger’s new drama captures a mother’s guilt, grief, and the ways she grapples with the unthinkable – especially when it comes to her son.
THE LAST WIDE OPEN
Book and Lyrics by Audrey Cefaly; Music by Matthew M. Nielson
Directed by Sarah Gay
June 18 - July 11, 2019
Previews: June 18, 19, 20 (matinee)
Opening Night: June 20
Fate plays its hand in this romantic regional premiere play that features original songs and live music. Lina and Roberto have been working together for years but rarely talk. When a late-night thunderstorm finds them alone in the restaurant at closing time, they find their lives intersecting in surprising and mystical ways. The Last Wide Open imagines how the universe conspires to bring us together.
by August Wilson
August 13 - September 12, 2020
Previews: August 13, 14, 15 (matinee)
Opening Night: August 15
Adult language & subject matter
Troy Maxson, a former star baseball player, is excluded as a black man from the major leagues during his prime. Troy's bitterness takes its toll on his relationships with his wife, who reevaluates their marriage when Troy comes home with a baby he fathered with another woman, and his son, who now wants his own chance to become a football star. This sensational drama was the recipient of the Pulitzer Prize and numerous New York Drama Critic’s and Tony awards—it is not to be missed.
GEORGE ORWELL'S 1984
Adapted for the stage by Michael Gene Sullivan
Directed by Matthew Gray
October 22 - November 21, 2020
Previews: October 22, 23, 24 (matinee)
Opening Night: October 24
Adult language & sensitive subject matter
Based on the iconic classic dystopian novel by George Orwell, 1984 brings us the story of Winston Smith, who lives in the state of Oceania—a nation where fervent, unquestioning patriotic zeal is expected of every citizen, having rebellious thoughts is a crime, and where the love for anything but The State is treason. A ferocious and provocative adaptation of one of the most prescient works of literature of the last century.
Season tickets packages are on sale now. Circle Theatre's box office is open from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday – Friday, and one hour before show times. Call 817-877-3040 for further information and reservations, or visit www.CircleTheatre.com to buy gift cards and tickets online.