Stage Door News
Toronto: Modern Times Stage Company presents “The Cherry Orchard” March 26-April 13
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Modern Times Stage is thrilled to present one of the great classics of 20thcentury theatre, Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Directed by Modern Times Theatre’s co-Artistic Director Soheil Parsa, The Cherry Orchard will be on stage at Streetcar Crowsnest March 26 – April 13, 2019.
Modern Times’ production of this definitive play marks the company’s 30th anniversary year and is a return to the text, which they first produced in an adapted form in 1997 under the title August 22nd – the title referring to the date the titular cherry orchard is lost.
This new production features a signature Modern Times Stage Company ensemble cast including Steven Bush, Colin Doyle, Tara Nicodemo, Oyin Oladejo, Keshia Palm, Cliff Saunders, Andrew Scorer, Alix Sideris, Courtenay Stevens, Diana Tso, Aaron Willis, and featuring acclaimed film and stage star Arsinée Khanjian as Lyubov.
The Cherry Orchard is Russian playwright Anton Chekhov’s final play. It has been described as “a theatre poem of the suffering of change” or a poem about life and death, transition and change. The Cherry Orchard unearths and explores the human comedy in the most tragic conditions. It is a comedy of life, with characters who are simultaneously ridiculous and touching. Modern Times’ simple, imagistic, and minimalist approach offers a new look into this timeless classical masterpiece. In a production filled with vitality, intimacy, poetry, and fluidity, director Soheil Parsa explores the human capacity for self-destruction and self-deception, the mystery of life, loss of values, human loneliness and the inability of people to comprehend the world in which they live.
“This play encompasses so many of the major themes that have been explored in the over 40 productions Modern Times has produced over the past 3 decades,” says Parsa. “Loneliness, the conflict between fate and free will, the mystery of existence, the inevitability of social transformation and the human suffering that comes with it. These themes feel as resonant as ever right now. I have always gravitated towards the classics, because I feel that being somewhat removed from contemporary temporal limitations, they offer the artist a unique freedom to access the archetypal stories and themes within.”
Parsa adds, “Chekhov is a profoundly human writer who captures the complexity and often self-defeating aspect of human nature in a very pure and simple way. I am overwhelmingly excited to return to The Cherry Orchard with this incredible cast, and to try to capture the play’s rhythm and movement, and to unearth all the layers of meaning that lie within it.”
Backstage, Parsa is joined by an award-winning group of artists comprised of set and lighting designer Trevor Schwellnus, costume designer Ming Wong, and sound designer Thomas Ryder Payne.
Modern Times Stage Company’s The Cherry Orchard runs March 26 – April 13, 2019 (Media night: March 29) at Streetcar Crowsnest (345 Carlaw Avenue) in the Guloien Theatre. Shows are scheduled Monday through Saturday at 8:00pm with Saturday matinees at 2:00pm. Tickets are now available starting at $20 and can be purchased at www.crowstheatre.com.
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