Leading Ladies to close Theatre Guild 2011 season

VERO BEACH — As its 53rd season draws to an end, the Vero Beach Theatre Guild will present Leading Ladies, a farce by Ken Ludwig, the author of earlier comedic Guild successes such as  Lend Me A Tenor and Moon Over Buffalo.

For the convenience of patrons, three time zones are offered:  7 p.m. on May 12, 18 and 19;  8 p.m. on May 13, 14 and 20;  and 2 p.m. on May 15, 21and 22. Set in York, Pennsylvania, in 1958, Leading Ladies centers on two down-on-their-luck Shakespearean actors, Leo Clark and Jack Gable. The pair discovers through a newspaper story, that an elderly woman named Florence has been unable to find Max and Steve, her daughter’s sons who had moved to England at an early age.

The ailing woman is seeking the whereabouts of her two grandsons so she can include them in her multi-million-dollar inheritance. Leo and Jack pool their thoughts and decide to pose as Max and Steve in order to claim a portion of the estate. That’s when the fun begins!

When Leading Ladies made its debut at Houston’s Alley Theatre a few years ago, critics called it “… so funny it will make sophisticated and reasonable men and women of the 21st century cackle till their faces hurt”  and “… consistently funny – indeed, increasingly hilarious as it progresses.”

Over the years, Ludwig has earned an Olivier Award, two Tony Award nominations, two Helen Hayes awards, the Edwin Forrest Award and an honorary doctorate from York University. His work has been performed in more than 25 countries, with translation into at least 16 languages.

Leading Ladies is directed by Patty Carreau (“Cabaret” 2009) and sponsored by the Sunshine Physical Therapy Clinic and List & Reamy, CPAs.

Cast members include Rebecca Carswell as Meg, Jason Avery as Leo and Johnny Banek as Jack. Kara Henson will portray Audrey, with George Andrew as Duncan, Gerry King, Florence; Neal Stannard, Doc; and Rich Stewart, Butch.

Set design is by Denise Lee. Ed Dessureau is the producer and sound designer. Stage manager is Clara McCarthy. Other artistic staff includes Ann McCabe, costumes; Robbie Messersmith, lights; and Anne Talbot, props.

Tickets are $22 (A Section) and $20 (B Section); students ages 18 and under are half-price. Reservations are available through the Box Office at 2020 San Juan Ave., or by calling (772) 562-8300 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays.

Adult tickets can be purchased anytime on-line at www.verobeachtheatreguild.com. Student and wheelchair/companion seats must be purchased through the Box Office.

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