Judging Oscar

June 17 (staged reading)

London. 1895. Poet, novelist, playwright, wit and raconteur, Oscar Wilde, is the most famous man in London. The author of The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as the children’s stories, The Happy Prince and The Selfish Giant, he also has two hit plays running in London at the same time – An Ideal Husband, and the world’s most perfect comedy – glitteringly witty The Importance of Being Earnest. Oscar is fêted in society, comfortably married, and the father of two young sons. But, he is also desperately in love with the beautiful, but dangerously unstable, Lord Alfred Douglas (nicknamed “Bosie”), youngest son of the Marquess of Queensberry. Outraged at the gossip circulating in London, the “mad Marquess” begins a campaign of stalking and publicly vilifying Wilde. Finally goaded by Bosie, Wilde brings an action for criminal libel against Queensberry, which backfires, and places Wilde in the dock – an outcast from the society that has so recently adored him.

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Look Homeward, Angel

November 16 – 24

North Carolina. 1916. But it could be anywhere. Any time. Teenager Eugene Gant lives in a country town with his large, crazy family, and survives by reading great books. His home is the "Dixieland" boarding house, run by his domineering mother, Eliza, who is forever buying real estate and caring for her bizarre assortment of boarders rather than her family. She constantly battles with Eugene's boozy, poetry-spouting father, W. O. Gant – a monumental mason, whose prize possession is a marble angel that represents the characters' aspirations. Of all his siblings, Eugene most idolises his older brother, Ben, who knows the danger of entrapment by the family, and urges young Eugene to get away. Caught in the stifling cross-fire between his romantic father and pragmatic mother, Eugene dreams of escaping to become a writer. But nothing complicates a dream like the arrival of your first great love. Will he ever get away? Will he recover? Can he learn to understand and forgive?

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