Dominic Dromgoole’s Classic Spring Company opens its year-long celebration of Oscar Wilde’s work with A Woman Of No Importance, in which Wilde’s marriage of glittering wit and Ibsenite drama creates a vivid new theatrical voice.
“One can survive everything nowadays, except death, and live down anything except a good reputation.” An earnest young American woman, a louche English lord, and an innocent young chap join a house party of fin de siècle fools and grotesques. Nearby a woman lives, cradling a long buried secret.
A Woman Of No Importance is directed by Dromgoole and stars Olivier award winner Eve Best (A Moon For The Misbegotten and Hedda Gabler), Eleanor Bron (Help!, Alfie), William Gaunt (King Lear, The Crucible) and BAFTA nominated Anne Reid (Last Tango in Halifax).
Classic Spring is a new theatre company, formed by Dromgoole (former Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre) to celebrate the bold and ground-breaking work of proscenium playwrights in the architecture for which they wrote.
Opening in the year of the fiftieth anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in the UK, the season aims to offer a much fuller picture of the much-loved gay playwright, who broke the mould in his work and his life, defying the landscape of the late-Victorian era.
Its first offering is an Oscar Wilde Season (opening with A Woman Of No Importance) at the Vaudeville, revolving around his four great Victorian plays, which shocked and redefined British theatre, and still resonate and refresh today.
A Woman Of No Importance is certainly no stranger to providing pertinent, provocative and hilarious commentary, having premiered at London’s Haymarket Theatre in April 1983 to a great reception due to the popularity of its satirical take on English upper class society.
134 years later, Dromgoole’s production of A Woman Of No Importance is a similarly huge hit, with a starry cast and hilarious blend of classic Wildean comedy and sharply written drama.
Age Recommendation: 8+
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