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Rep Stage Opens 21st Season with “A Young Lady of Property” by Pulitzer Prize Winner Horton Foote

August 26, 2013

From the Academy Award-winning screenwriter of “To Kill A Mockingbird” and the critically acclaimed current Broadway production of "The Trip to Bountiful" comes the stage adaptation of one his early tele-plays from The Golden Age of Television, directed by former Rep Stage artistic director Michael Stebbins 

(Columbia, MD) – Rep Stage, the professional Equity theatre in residence at Howard Community College (HCC), opens its 21st season with “A Young Lady of Property,” Horton Foote’s stirring account of the lives of the inhabitants of a small Texas town in 1925. This story about family — and the memories that come with hearth and home — stars Rep Stage veteran Christine Demuth in the title role as a young girl who loses her mother at an early age and whose greatest wish is to live with her father in the house her mother left her. In the absence of a real family, the house has become everything to her, and her whole identity is based on this, her one possession. Demuth is joined by fellow Rep veterans Tony Tsendeas, Marilyn Bennett and Rep newcomers Marianne Angelella, Yvonne Erickson, Erica McLaughlin and Kathryn Zoerb. Former Rep Stage Producing Artistic Director Michael Stebbins returns to direct. “A Young Lady of Property” opens September 11, 2013, with a limited run through September 29 in the Studio Theatre of the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center (HVPA) on the campus of HCC. For tickets and additional information, visit www.repstage.org or call 443-518-1500.

A post-show reception follows the Saturday, September 14 8 p.m. evening performance and free post-show discussions follow the Friday, September 20 and 27 performances. There will be a pre-show lecture, conducted by Dr. Lisa A. Wilde, Rep Stage dramaturg, before the Saturday, September 28 matinee performance beginning at 12:30 p.m. in Monteabaro Hall. The lecture is free and open to the public. No tickets are needed for the lecture.

About the Play:

“A Young Lady of Property” was originally written for the small screen in 1953 during “The Golden Age of Television” (late 1940s through the early 1960s) for the Philco Goodyear Television Playhouse. It was later produced by ITV Television in London, England, as part of a series of live teleplays in 1960. Although never produced on Broadway, the play has enjoyed numerous productions in summer and regional theatres around the country and is a staple in the Horton Foote cannon of plays.

Meet the Playwright:

Albert Horton Foote, Jr. was an American playwright and screenwriter, perhaps best known for his screenplays for the 1962 film “To Kill a Mockingbird” and the 1983 film “Tender Mercies,” and his notable live television dramas during the late 1940s and early 1960s. Foote's plays were produced on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway and at many regional theatres. He received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1995 for his play “The Young Man From Atlanta” and in 2000 was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Bill Clinton.

Meet the Director:

Michael Stebbins is an actor, director and writer that is well known to Rep Stage audiences, having served as Rep’s producing artistic director from 2005 to 2013. As an actor, he has appeared in “Fully Committed,” “Stones in His Pockets,” “Mrs. Warren’s Profession,” “The Santaland Diaries,” “Wittenberg” and “An Almost Holy Picture.” His directing credits include “A Moon for the Misbegotten,” “The Santaland Diaries,” “A Dickens of a Carol,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “Two by J. M. Barrie: The New Word and The Old Lady Shows Her Medals,” “Or,” and last season’s “Mary Rose.” He is the recipient of a Helen Hayes Tribute award. He will also be appearing this season as Charlotte von Mahlsdorf and 40-plus other characters in Doug Wright’s 2004 Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning play, “I Am My Own Wife.”

Meet the Cast:

Marianne Angelella (Mrs. Leighton) was an artistic associate, artist-in-residence and education director with the Baltimore Shakespeare Festival (BSF). At BSF she appeared in "Much Ado About Nothing,” "Julius Caesar," "All’s Well That Ends Well," and in a touring production of Kimberley Lynne’s "Weird Sisters.” She appeared at Everyman Theatre in "Taking Sides," "Hedda Gabler," and "The Children’s Hour.” As an understudy she has performed as Mrs. Frank in "The Diary of Anne Frank" at the Roundhouse Theater, and played Sunny Jacobs in "The Exonerated," directed by Rain Pryor at University of Baltimore. Marianne has also performed for the Young Playwright’s Festival at Center Stage. She has appeared in many readings of new works; most recently, in a Dramatist Guild staged reading of "Fortunes Child" by Mark Scharf (2012 O'Neill finalist) and directed by Yvonne Erickson. She has taught drama for many Baltimore City programs, including acting for Everyman Theatre.

Marilyn Bennett (Martha Davenport) returns to Rep Stage where she was last seen as Mrs. Otery in “Mary Rose” by J.M. Barrie. She also appeared in Rep’s “Two by J. M. Barrie: The New Word and The Old Lady Shows Her Medals.” Marilyn has performed in many area productions, including The Shakespeare Theatre’s “Strange Interlude”; Bay Theatre Company’s “Picnic”; Maryland Ensemble Theatre’s “Betty the Yeti,” “Wonder of the World,” “Independence” and “Arms and the Man”; Journeymen Theater Company’s “Manicures” and “Monuments”; The Source Theatre Festival’s “Language Monkey,” ”Sasquatch and the Man,” “Then and Again” and  “The Shore”; Didactic Theatre Company’s “The Waverly Gallery”; and American Century Theatre’s “A Delicate Balance.” She has studied at The Studio Theatre Acting Conservatory and The Shakespeare Theatre.

Christine Demuth (Wilma) has appeared at Rep Stage in “Mary Rose,” “Or,” “Two by J.M.Barrie: The New Word and The Old Lady Shows Her Medals,” “The Glass Menagerie,”  “A Dickens of a Carol” and “Intelligence.” Other credits include “The Wild Duck,” “The Other Shore” and “La Muneca” for Single Carrot Theatre; “The Taming of the Shrew,” “Macbeth” and “Antigone” for the Baltimore Shakespeare Festival; and “Hamlet” for the Virginia Shakespeare Festival in Williamsburg. She has also performed at The Folger Theatre, Stanislavsky Theatre Studio, Frances Merrick Performing Arts Center, Maryland Arts Festival,  NYC’s “Shakespeare IN THE RAW” and Chicago’s Promethean Theatre Ensemble in “Our Country’s Good.”

Yvonne Erickson (Aunt Gert) Yvonne has been a stage, screen and voiceover performer for over 30 years. Notable local stage appearances include "Guantanamo" at the Studio Theatre, "Lady Windemere's Fan" at Baltimore’s Center Stage, and "The Guys" at Rep Stage in honor of the 10th anniversary of fallen firefighters in NYC on 9/11. She has had many principal roles on television, appearing in episodes of "VEEP,” "Hack," "Homicide," "The Wire," "Matlock" and others, and in the films "The Mothman Prophecies,” "The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys," and "The Prince of Tides," among others. Her INDIE film "White Reindeer" premiered at The Brooklyn Academy of Music in NYC in June 2013 and continues to be shown in film festivals around the country, including The Maryland Film Festival.  Yvonne has directed many staged readings around the area, including at Rep Stage, The Studio Theatre, The Dramatist Guild, Baltimore Playwrights Festival, and the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.

Erica Lauren McLaughlin (Minna) is a New York City-based actress, playwright and artist management consultant originally from Washington, DC. She is making her Rep stage debut. As an actress, she has performed on stage at the John F. Kennedy Center (DC), the New York Fringe Festival, PS 122 (NY), T. Schreiber Studio (NY), Gene Frankel Theater (NY), American Theatre for Actors (NY), Atlas Performing Arts Center (DC), Theatre Project (Baltimore), Queens Theater in the Park (NY), and UMBC, among others. As a playwright, she received the 2001 National ACT-SO gold medal for playwriting, and her plays have been produced at the Mobtown Theatre in Baltimore, in the Inaugural Capital Fringe Festival, and at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky.  Other credits include "Seven Against Thebes” at Faux Real Theatre Company; "Amerissiah" at Amoralist Theater Company; "Home" at Serenity Players DC;  "Roundheads and Peakheads" at Catalyst Theater Company; and "The Oracle" at African Continuum Theater.  

Tony Tsendeas (Mr. Russell Walter/Lester/Man) has brought his critically-acclaimed one man “The Poe Show” twice to Rep Stage. Other credits at Rep Stage include directing “Wittenberg” (Helen Hayes nomination for Best Director) and “An Almost Holy Picture” and appearing in “Mary Rose” and “Las Meninas.” Formerly the artistic director of Action Theater, his work as an actor and director has been seen nationally and internationally. With Action Theater, he directed and performed in “Beckettland,” for which he was nominated as Best Actor by London’s Stage Magazine. Directing credits include “The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari,” “The Madman and The Nun,” “Othello” and “Macbeth.” His play “The Adventures of Felix” was awarded a Maryland State Arts Council Playwriting Award. Next at Rep Stage he will be directing “I Am My Own Wife” by Doug Wright.

Kathryn Zoerb (Arabella) is making her Rep Stage debut.  Past credits include "Romeo & Juliet," "Love's Labour's Lost" and "Macbeth" with the Baltimore Shakespeare Factory; "All's Well That End's Well" with the Harrisburg Shakespeare Festival; and most recently "Rossum's Universal Robots" at the Capital Fringe Festival. Kathryn received her BA in theatre and music from the University of Pittsburgh and studied Commedia dell'Arte and physical theatre at the Accademia dell'Arte in Arezzo, Italy. 

Meet the Design Team:

The “A Young Lady of Property” design team includes Kristina Lambdin (costume designer), Greggory Schraven (set designer), Terry Cobb (lighting designer), Nancy Krebs (dialect/vocal coach), Vicki Sussman (properties designer), and Ann Warren (sound designer). Stage Management by Lisa Mion.

About Rep Stage

Rep Stage, a professional Equity theatre in residence at Howard Community College, is celebrating its 21th season. The company is a member of the League of Washington Theatres, the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance and Theatre Communications Group. Rep Stage is recognized by Theatre Washington as a professional DC Metro area theater company and is eligible to be nominated for the Helen Hayes Awards. Performances are made possible by Howard County Arts Council, Howard County Government, and the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency funded by the State of Maryland and National Endowment for the Arts, as well as through generous individual contributions.  Howard Bank is the Rep Stage 2013-14 season partner. Rep Stage is proud to be a partner of Howard County Tourism and Promotion.