New Harmony Theatre will finish its 30th season with Souvenir by Stephen Temperley. The play runs July 28-30 and August 4-6 at the Murphy Auditorium in historic New Harmony, Indiana.
Souvenir tells the real-life story of Florence Foster Jenkins, an opera singer of the 1930's and 40's who enjoyed the backing of her own money to finance her public performances. With little connection to reality and even less to pitch, she was determined to present herself as a gifted performing artist to an astounded public. She met their derision with supreme confidence, and in the end left us all to ask whether art resides in the performance itself or the soul of the artist. Both funny and touching, Florence is a rare character to cheer for. Movie goers may recall that just last year a movie titled Florence Foster Jenkins, featuring Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant, was released.
The play will be directed by Eric Altheide, associate resident director of New Harmony Theatre. Altheide has produced many past New Harmony Theatre productions including The 39 Steps, The Full Monty, and The Fox on the Fairway. Souvenir stars Evansville native Paula Leggett Chase as Florence Foster Jenkins. Chase made her New Harmony Theatre debut as Berthe in Boeing-Boeing in 2013 and has been in Broadway productions of On the 20th Century, Bye Bye Birdie, Curtains, and more. Joining Paula in the two-person production is Jonas Cohen, who starred as Sherlock Holmes in the 2014 New Harmony Theatre production of Hound of the Baskervilles. They will be joined by a design team including USI faculty members Paul Weimer as scenic designer, Eric Cope as lighting designer, and Shan Jensen as costume designer; USI staff members Kevin Gray as sound designer and Andy Hammond as tech director; and Actors Equity Stage Manager Erin Joy Swank and Actors Equity Assistant Stage Manager Margaret Kayes.
Single tickets are $30 for an adult, $28 for seniors age 60+, $10 for ages 25 and under, and $24 for USI employees. Season package tickets are also available. Shows start at 7:30 pm on Friday nights, 2 pm and 7:30 on Saturdays, and a 2 pm matinee on Sundays. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit USI.edu/nht or call the box office at 812-465-1668. Follow on Facebook at New Harmony Theatre for updates and photos.
Photo Credit: USI Photography and Multimedia