Heritage Theatre Festival to Present High-Flying French Farce 'Boeing-Boeing'

July 7, 2011 — The Heritage Theatre Festival will open "Boeing-Boeing," the comedic French tale of what happens when a high-flying, swinging 1960s architect tries to juggle a trio of flight attendant lovers, on July 14 in the Culbreth Theatre.

"Boeing-Boeing" debuted in London in 1962. It had a brief Broadway run in 1965, and emerged later that same year in a movie version starring Tony Curtis, The show began a Tony Award-winning Broadway revival in 2008 that was followed by a successful national tour.

Written by Marc Camoletti and translated by Beverley Cross and Francis Evans, the play will be directed by William Rough and presented at Culbreth Theatre from July 14 to 16 and on Aug. 1 and 4. There will be a matinee July 16 at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $26 ($22 for seniors and U.Va. faculty and staff, and $15 for students). Season and single-show tickets are available at the U.Va. Arts Box Office in the Drama Building, online at www.uvahtf.org or by calling 434-924-3376.

Rough calls the play a welcome departure from his usual professional pursuits. "I tend to do plays that are more on the serious, soul-searching side. And there is not a piece of rational common sense in this whole play. It's just great. It's a lark," he said.

It's the kind of fun, Rough said, that all of us could use some more of these days. "It's really fun to be able to laugh. I think we are all sorely in need of farce in today's world. We see so much farce that has consequences, for example, in Washington, that it is always nice to see farce that makes no difference. It is quite simply an opportunity to laugh and to just enjoy ourselves, and this play gives us plenty of chances to do that."

The audience won't be having all the fun, he said. "One of the really exciting things for me with this play is being able to kind of let go and let the cast fly, and this is a cast I can certainly do this with."

The show is a reunion of sorts for Rough and for Heritage fans as it brings him back together with the popular stars of the "Tuna" series, John Paul Scheidler and Evan Bridenstine. Rough directed the pair in "A Tuna Christmas" at Heritage last summer.

"J.P. is playing the American architect in Paris, and he is visited by his old friend from Wisconsin, played by Evan," he said.

Other familiar faces will be Emelie Faith Thompson, fresh from her acclaimed performance as Eliza Doolittle in "My Fair Lady," and longtime local favorite Lydia Horan.

The 2011 Heritage Theatre Festival season will continue at the Culbreth with the Hitchcock-meets-Monty Python comedy "The 39 Steps," opening July 21, and the romantic musical "She Loves Me," opening July 28.

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