Feb. 9, 1996
UW-RF to Present Wilde Comedy
By Penny Huntington
UW-RF News Bureau
Oscar Wilde's classic comedy "The Importance of Being Earnest" is set to begin performance at UW-River Falls on Feb. 28 and will run through March 3.
The performances are scheduled for 8 p.m. Feb. 28-March 2, and at 2 p.m. on March 3. Tickets will go on sale beginning Feb. 26 and may be purchased by calling the box office at 715/425-3114. Box office hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.. Admission is $6 for non-students and $3 for students and senior citizens.
The cast is under the direction of Jim Zimmerman, an associate professor of the speech communications and theatre arts department.
The production is a comedy of manners, language, and self-indulgence. Zimmerman says he chose the play for its language and etiquette. The play is considered one of the greatest comedies ever written, full of unwritten etiquette, graciousness, and style.
"The Importance of Being Earnest" is set in upper-class London in the late 1800's. It is a story about two gentlemen, one from the city and one from the country, who love to travel into each other's community to impress the fairer sex. In order to hide their true identity they each take on the name of Earnest. The two gentlemen fall in love, and must confess that they are, in fact, not "Earnest."
In their quest to tell the truth, the two run into a lot of chaos and confusion.
Practices for the cast are somewhat challenging, Zimmerman says. Female cast members wear corsets to practice to perfect their poise. The male cast members also are challenged by learning etiquette of the late 1800's.
Here is a listing of performers and their characters, by student hometown:
River Falls: Erik Paulson, the Rev. Cannon Chasuble; Jeremy Rabitoy, Lane; Mitchell Fay; Lady Bracknell.
Long Lake, Minn.: Dave Carslon, Jack Worthing.
Woodbury, Minn: Joe Keith, Algernon Moncrieff.
Sartell, Minn.: Joel Anthony, Merriman.
Forest Lake, Minn.: Melanie Waldoch, Gwendolen Fairfax.
Columbia Heights, Minn.: Gwen Heyn, Cecily Cardew.
Rochester, Minn.: Lori Snyder, Miss Prism.