University of Virginia Drama Department Caps Season With 'The Voysey Inheritance'

April 11, 2008 – The University of Virginia Drama Department puts an exclamation point on its acclaimed and successful 2007-08 season with "The Voysey Inheritance." David Mamet's adaptation of Harley Granville-Barker's 1905 drama is a timeless and powerful reminder that while times may change, the most basic human tendencies and temptations are ever the same.

"The Voysey Inheritance," directed by Robert Chapel, comes to the Culbreth Theatre stage from April 17-19 and April 23-26. All performances begin at 8 p.m.

The play focuses on the response of its central character after he uncovers dark and long-held secrets of his family's business, and finds that the reactions of his own family to those secrets and lies shake his values to their very core.

Director Robert Chapel is particularly struck by the timelessness of the play and the issues it raises. "Greed is at the center of this play," he said. "Here is a play that was written 103 years ago but could easily have been written yesterday. The temptations to make money in whatever devious means available and at any cost permeate our society today just as they once did in Edwardian England."

He said he has been thinking of doing the play since first seeing it at the Edinburgh Festival in 1992, in Barker's original full-length, five-act form. "I loved it even in its longest form because it resonated, and continues to resonate with our world today and the various financial shenanigans that that we read and hear about every day. What David Mamet did was essentially trim the play while keeping the spirit of the original in every way. The message is just as potent as, or maybe even more potent than the original in that you get the message in a more focused period of time. I believe what once was a play that lasted well over three hours is now told in two."

Single tickets are $14 for adults, $12 for seniors and $8 for students and can be ordered by calling the Drama Box Office at 434-924-3376 or by visiting the Culbreth Theatre weekdays from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Faculty and staff receive a 15 percent discount on tickets and subscriptions. Full-time U.Va. students can use their Art$ Dollars to purchase tickets (see for information).

Parking for "The Voysey Inheritance" is available at the brand new Culbreth Road Parking Garage located directly adjacent to the Drama Building that houses both the Helms and Culbreth theatres. The parking garage and theater are located on Culbreth Road, which can now be accessed from Rugby Road or University Avenue. Parking is free for theatre patrons in the Arts Grounds Parking Garage after 5 p.m. on performance nights.

Press images for "The Voysey Inheritance" can be found at

For complete information on the 2007-2008 season, visit