Steppenwolf presents The Dresser by Ronald Harwood, directed by Steppenwolf ensemble member Amy Morton, featuring Steppenwolf ensemble members Tracy Letts, John Mahoney and Alan Wilder Chicago — Steppenwolf Theatre Company presents The Dresser by Ronald Harwood, directed by Steppenwolf ensemble member Amy Morton. The Dresser begins performances in the Steppenwolf Downstairs Theatre on September 16, 2004. United Airlines is the Exclusive Production Sponsor of The Dresser. In wartime England, a traveling theater company prepares to perform King Lear while Sir (John Mahoney), the actor in the title role, is spiraling into madness. Sir's devoted dresser, Norman (Tracy Letts), would do anything to help lift his fallen monarch for one last stage triumph. This affectionate portrait of life backstage is full of vibrant characters and is at once comic and deeply moving. The cast of The Dresser features Steppenwolf ensemble members Tracy Letts (Norman), John Mahoney (Sir) and Alan Wilder (Kent) with Tom Aulino (Knight/Albany), Wayne Brown (Gloucester), Mary Beth Fisher (Her Ladyship), John Judd (Knight/Gentleman), Linsey Page Morton (Irene), Mike Nussbaum (Geoffrey Thornton), Peggy Roeder (Madge) and Jeff Still (Mr. Oxenby). The designers of The Dresser are Santo LoQuasto (sets), Nan Cibula–Jenkins (costumes), Pat Collins (lights), Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (sound). Alison Ramsey is the stage manager and Michelle Medvin is the assistant stage manager. Previews for The Dresser are September 16–19 and 22–25, 2004. The production opens Sunday, September 26, 2004, at 6:00 p.m., and runs through November 14, 2004. Please note our curtain times: all performances run Tuesday through Sunday at 7:30 p.m., as well as Saturday and Sunday matinees at 3:00 p.m. and Wednesday matinees on October 27, November 3 and 10, 2004, at 2:00 p.m. There will be no Sunday evening performances on October 31, November 7 and 11, 2004. The performance on Wednesday, October 13, 2004, will be sign language interpreted for the deaf and hard of hearing. The performance on Thursday, October 14, 2004, will be audio–described for the blind and sight impaired. Free post–show discussions will be held every Tuesday and Thursday after the performance during the regular run. Dr. Mary Agnes Doyle will present a free post–show lecture as part of "theplaytalks" series following the Wednesday matinees on October 27, November 3 and 10, 2004. Ticket prices are $20 to $60. Audience Services hours are 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. every day and 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on days with evening performances. The Audience Services number is (312) 335–1650. Real–time online ticketing is available at www.steppenwolf.org Twenty $20 tickets are available at Audience Services beginning at 11:00 a.m. on the day of the performance. Half–price rush tickets are available one hour before each show. For group sales reservations, please contact the Group Sales Manager at 312–654–5629. Discounts are available for groups of ten or larger. Steppenwolf Theatre Company is located near all forms of public transportation and is wheelchair accessible. Street and lot parking are available. Assistive listening devices are available for every performance. Steppenwolf gratefully acknowledges its 2004–2005 season sponsors: Premier Benefactors--Ogilvy & Mather, Inc., Sara Lee Foundation, and Target Corporation, Inc.; Grand Benefactors--American Express, Bank One, Mercedes–Benz USA, The Shubert Foundation, Inc., and The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust and United Airlines; Benefactors--Lord, Bissell & Brook, LLP, and Vinci. Steppenwolf Theatre Company's programs are partially supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Illinois Arts Council, and by a CityArts Program 4 grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. Committed to the principle of ensemble performance through the collaboration of a company of actors, directors and playwrights, Steppenwolf Theatre Company's mission is to advance the vitality and diversity of American theater by nurturing artists, encouraging repeatable creative relationships and contributing new works to the national canon. The company, formed in 1976 by a collective of actors, is dedicated to perpetuating an ethic of mutual respect and the development of artists through on–going group work. Steppenwolf has grown into an internationally renowned company of thirty–five artists whose talents include acting, directing, playwriting, filmmaking and textual adaptation. Fact Sheet: The Dresser Title: The Dresser Playwright: Ronald Harwood Director: Steppenwolf ensemble member Amy Morton Location: Steppenwolf Downstairs Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted Street Dates: Previews: September 16–19, 22–25, 2004 Opening: Sunday, September 26, 2004, at 6:00pm Regular Run: September 28–November 14, 2004 Curtain Times: Tuesdays through Saturday at 7:30pm Saturdays and Sunday matinees at 3:00pm Wednesday matinees on October 27, November 3 & 10, 2004 at 2:00pm Tickets: $20.00–$60.00 Twenty for $20 tickets are available at Audience Services beginning at 11:00 a.m. on the day of the performance. Half–price rush tickets are available one hour before each show. Audience Services: 1650 N Halsted Street (312)335–1650 www.steppenwolf.org 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. everyday 11:00 a.m.–7:00 p.m. on days with evening performances Brief Synopsis In wartime England, a traveling theater company prepares to perform King Lear while Sir, the actor in the title role, is spiraling into madness. Sir's devoted dresser, Norman, would do anything to help lift his fallen monarch for one last stage triumph. This affectionate portrait of life backstage is full of vibrant characters and is at once comic and deeply moving. The Dresser:
- pairs Steppenwolf ensemble members John Mahoney (Sir) and Tracy Letts (Norman) on stage for the first time. Mahoney recently finished his eleventh year on Frasier. Tracy Letts is an actor, director and playwright. His play Man From Nebraska was recently a Pulitzer Prize Finalist, and his play Bug plays to critical acclaim at New York's Barrow St. Theatre.
- The Dresser's supporting cast is comprised of local favorites, many of whom have a rich history of sharing Chicago stages: ensemble member Alan Wilder, Tom Aulino, Wayne Brown, Mary Beth Fisher, John Judd, Mike Nussbaum, Linsey Page, Amy Morton, Peggy Roeder and Jeff Still.
- Amy Morton, Steppenwolf ensemble member who memorably staged Glengarry Glen Ross for Steppenwolf's 2001–2002 season, directs the acclaimed modern drama that blurs onstage with backstage, as a once famous actor goes mad playing King Lear.
- is written by Ronald Harwood and was inspired by his own experience as a dresser to a famous Shakespearean "actor–manager." Harwood won an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Pianist, another tale of the artist in wartime. He wrote and directed TAnother Time for Steppenwolf's inaugural production in the Downstairs Theatre in the 1990–1991 season.
- the design team is assembled from the most sought–after theater artists working on Broadway and beyond. The Dresser will be staged on an innovative set by multiple Tony Award–winner Santo LoQuasto, known for his set design of twenty–four Woody Allen films. Lighting by Pat Collins, costumes by Nan Cibula and sound by Rob Milburn & Michael Bodeen.