SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER

by Oliver Goldsmith


Directed by Kevin Connell

Choreographer:  Haila Strauss

Musical Director:  Bruce Lazarus

Voice and Dialect Coach:  Jeff Morrison

 

Marymount Manhattan College

Department of Theatre  Arts

The Theresa Lang Theatre

221 East 71st Street

New York, NY  10021

April 15-19, 2009 

(April 15-18 at 8 pm &  April 19 at 2 pm)

Admission:  $10.00

Students/Seniors with ID:  $5.00

Reservations:  212-774-0760

 

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She Stoops to Conquer

Oliver Goldsmith may not have had the linguistic virtuosity or satiric audacity of his great contemporary, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, but 'She Stoops to Conquer' is one of the few highpoints in English drama between the Restoration and Oscar Wilde. Ironically, in view of its satirising the slavish devotion to French fashions, the play is influenced by early 18th century French comedy: the plot is very similar to Marivaux's 'The Game of love and chance': two fathers arrange a marriage for their children; this paternal decree is severely shaken by disguises, misrecognitions and counter-plots. The difference being, English comedy is always the funniest, and we get lots of marvellous words like 'obstropalous'.

In effect, this drama consists of characters staging dramas to get their way, which are spoiled by other dramas, e.g. Mr. Hardcastle decides his daughter will marry a man she never met, and arranges their meeting; Tony tells this prospective husband, Marlow, and his friend Hastings, that the gentleman's house they seek is a tavern; Kate disguises herself as a barmaid to woo the diffident Marlow. The effect of all these conflicting dramas is to take a supposedly solid, class-based system, based on paternal and aristocratic power, and reveal it as a fragile one based on illusion, a series of masks and attitudes adopted to suit the required social context, where wrong directions can as easily derail as resolve the social order. The best comedy here comes from characters mistaking the social context, as when Marlow treats his host and future father-in-law as a pesky inn-keeper. Significantly, in this over-cultured milieu, most of the spanners in the works are thrown by the illiterate Tony.

In Goldsmith's world, there is no such thing as a 'natural', whole identity - character is divided by public and private roles, fragmented by clothing and ornaments, with passions dictated by fashions. Goldsmith's benevolently cynical view of his century encompasses all its familiar tropes - the carousing squire rake; the social mobility; the marketplace of marriage; the refined bawdiness; the hints at the incipient decline of the aristocracy (where an old estate has degenerated into a plausible inn); the wars turned into legend from a safe distance. Its teeming culture is catalogued too - sentimental novels, the love of theatre, the rise of Gothic fiction (marvellously parodied to the point where the mistress of the house is terrified of her own garden), Hogarth, caricature prints etc.

Featuring:

Mrs. Hardcastle…………………Diana Zambrotta

Mr. Hardcastle…………………Chip Rodgers

Tony Lumpkin…………………Ryan Rinkel

Miss Kate Hardcastle…………………Amy Young

Miss Constance Neville…………………Erica Knight

Charles Marlow…………………Zach Walker

George Hastings…………………Nick La Medica

Lady Charlotte Marlow…………Diana Gonzalez-Morett

Diggory…………………Andy Markert

Stingo…………………Christopher Stokes

Thomas…………………Peter Martin

Roger…………………A.J. Cote

Jeremy…………………Eric Mossman

Scudder…………………George Iliopoulos

Pimple…………………Kasey Dailey

Bridget…………………Jackie Reilly

Bette Bouncer…………………Jasmine Mahboob

Toots…………………Jessica Zambrotta

Musician.....................Anne Reaves

Musician........................Noah Weary

 

 

Set Design.....................Carlos Castillo

Lighting Design.....................Katie Stevens

Costume Design.....................Stephanie Eubank

Production Stage Manager…………………Lauren Groves

Assistant Stage Manager…………………Michelle Foster

Assistant Stage Manager…………………Catherine Pishal

Assistant Director…………………Paul Markert

Assistant to the Choreographer…………Jasmine Mahboob

Assistant to the Musical Director.....................Anne Reaves

Assistant to the Musical Director........................Noah Weary

Dramaturg…………………Laura Baum

Dramaturg…………………Catie Choate

Dramaturg…………………Elitza Daskalova