GLPA to Stage 'The Importance of Being Earnest'

February 10, 2012

Being EarnestLander Performing Arts' 65th season takes a dramatic turn on Monday, Feb. 20, with the Aquila Theatre production of Irish playwright Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest."

Based in New York City, the Aquila Theatre is a critically acclaimed British-American company whose self-described mission is "to bring the greatest works to the greatest number." Aquila is the foremost producer of touring classical theatre in the United States, visiting 60-70 American cities each year.

Wilde's play, first performed in London in 1895, is a satire that makes fun of the strictures of Victorian society, which Wilde found oppressive. The Aquila Theatre production of "The Importance of Being Earnest" is set in contemporary England and has been described by theatre critic Robert P. Arthur as "a wild Wilde." Reviewer Fred Sokol commented, "That Wilde's script worked so well, then and now, speaks to the writer's durability."

Tickets for "The Importance of Being Earnest," supported by the South Carolina Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts, with a touring grant from South Arts, are $25 for adults and $10 for students/children. Tickets can be purchased by calling the GLPA office at 864-388-8326.

The performance begins at 7:30 p.m., in Lander's Josephine B. Abney Cultural Center Auditorium.

The Aquila Theatre will also participate in GLPA's 2011-2012 Outreach program, which introduces area youth to the performing arts, with a Tuesday, Feb. 21 performance of Shakespeare's "Macbeth."

GLPA executive director Cecily Morris praised Aquila for "bringing classical theatre to the masses in a new and exciting way." She encouraged residents to see Aquila's performance of "The Importance of Being Earnest," which she called "a really good piece of theatre."