‘Autumn,’ ‘Vanya’ round out Playhouse season

By KATHI SCRIZZI DRISCOLL | Published: MARCH 24, 2015 |

The final two plays of the summer season were announced today by Cape Playhouse, and both are shows not only new to the theater, but premieres for the Cape.

The season opener, running June 16-27, is Eric Coble’s “The Velocity of Autumn,” and playhouse officials say this is the first production of the comedy-drama since it played on Broadway last year. The story is of a 79-year-old artist in a showdown with her family over where she’ll spend her remaining years. She’s barricaded herself in her Brooklyn brownstone with Molotov cocktails; son Chris returns after 20 years and becomes the family’s mediator.

The second announcement was for Christopher Durang’s “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike,” the winner of the 2013 Tony Award for Best Play. The playhouse run will be Aug. 11-22. The comedy is a mash-up of Chekhov plays, focusing on middle-aged siblings Vanya and Sonia living a quiet life in their Pennsylvania farmhouse when movie-star sister Masha makes a surprise weekend visit with her boy-toy Spike in tow.

Those two shows join the four announced late last year for the six-play summer at the 89-year-old Dennis theater. This is the first time dates for all shows were revealed, though.

“The Cape Playhouse continues to be fortunate in acquiring the latest shows to be Cape Cod premieres, and have the best actors from New York eager to show their talents on the famed playhouse stage,” producer Mark Cuddy said in a press release. Casting will be announced at a later date.

A centerpiece of the 2015 season, running July 28-Aug. 8, will be the Lerner and Loewe musical “My Fair Lady,” with Tony Award nominee Hunter Foster — often seen acting at the playhouse — making his Dennis directorial debut with the story of turning flower girl Eliza Doolittle into a proper lady.

The second musical will be “The Drowsy Chaperone,” running June 30-July 11. The parody of American musical comedy won five Tony Awards in 2006 with its story of an eccentric musical theater devotee whose favorite show comes alive in his apartment.

A new comedy will be Wendy MacLeod’s “Women in Jeopardy,” which was heard last summer in a reading at the playhouse and will now run July 14-25. That show, described as “‘Thelma and Louise’ meets ‘The First Wives Club,’” tells the story of divorcees suspicious of their friend’s new boyfriend.

Finishing out the summer, Aug. 25-Sept. 5, is Edward Taylor’s 1992 British mystery-thriller “Murder by Misadventure,” which explores what happens when two successful mystery writers, who have worked together for years, start to hate each other.

Season subscriptions are now on sale: CapePlayhouse.com or 877-385-3911. Individual show tickets will go on sale April 15.