What happens to the Bennet sisters after the events in Pride and Prejudice? Austen fans can find out for themselves in the romantic comedy this fall at Cincinnati’s Playhouse in the Park as Jane Austen’s Beloved Characters Return in Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberly. The production runs Oct. 18 through Nov. 10 at Playhouse in the Park’s Marx Theatre.
An imagined sequel to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, the play returns to the beloved world of the Bennet family in a production that will please Austen fans and newcomers alike.
“Fans will delight in the new situation of the characters that they have so come to love; Austen newbies will find a world brimming with froth and wit and characters filled with life,” says Blake Robison, artistic director of the Playhouse.
At the end of Pride and Prejudice, Austen has her heroine Lizzie Bennet (the new Mrs. Darcy) write her family and invite them to Pemberley for Christmas. Playwrights Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon used this invitation as a springboard to imagine a rich story filled with the wit, humor and heart of the original.
While comforted by the company of books and her piano, middle sister Mary has grown tired of her role as the dutiful daughter and dreams of her own independence. When the Bennets gather at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Darcy for the holidays, an unexpected encounter brings about the possibility of an intellectual match and maybe even love for Mary.
In the hands of Gunderson and Melcon, Miss Bennet sparkles with lively wit that’s true to Austen’s style, as well as a contemporary sense of female empowerment. Co-author Melcon has described Mary as, “smart, capable, awkward – maybe a little bit nerdy – and she is rejecting the traditional values of the society that she is living in and forging her own path.”
Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Ohio’s only two-time Tony Award-winning theatre, boasts productions that are both nationally recognized and locally crafted. Playhouse audiences will be familiar with co-playwright Gunderson’s female-centric The Revolutionists, which made its world premiere in the Shelterhouse in 2016, and was directed by Holdridge. (The play has gone on to receive numerous, successful productions around the country.) The 2018-2019 season includes productions featuring actors, directors and designers who regularly work on and off Broadway and at other leading professional theatres across the country. All productions are presented at the Playhouse’s iconic Eden Park setting.
Page-to-Stage Book Club: Pride and Prejudice
Nov. 12 at 7 pm at The Mercantile Library
Join us for our Page-to-Stage Book Club series with Jane Austen’s timeless classic, Pride and
Prejudice, in preparation for the Playhouse’s production of Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley. Page-to-Stage Book Clubs will meet at The Mercantile Library at 414 Walnut St., #1100. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required by calling the Box Office at 513-421-3888.
Tasting Series: Afternoon Tea
Saturdays, Oct. 20 and 27, and Nov. 3 and 10 at 2:30 pm at the Playhouse
Cost: $35 per person
Join us before Saturday 4 pm performances of Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley for an afternoon tea event hosted by The BonBonerie. Afternoon tea will begin promptly at 2:30 pm. Cost is $35 per person and does not include a ticket to the show. Reservations are required by the Monday prior to the tasting and can be made through the Box Office at 513-421-3888 or online at cincyplay.com/events.
Playhouse Perspectives: Reimagining Classic Literature with Curtis Sittenfeld
Sunday, Nov. 4, 6 to 7 pm at the Playhouse
Join Playhouse Artistic Director Blake Robison as he engages in conversation about reimagining classic literature with renowned author and Cincinnati native Curtis Sittenfeld. In 2016, Sittenfeld published Eligible, which is an homage to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice that takes place in modern-day Cincinnati. Sittenfeld is the New York Times best-selling author of Prep, The Man of My Dreams, American Wife, Sisterland and You Think It, I’ll Say It. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required by calling the Box Office at 513-421-3888. The Playhouse Perspectives series is supported by a generous grant from Roderick and Barbara Barr.
To purchase tickets or for more information, call the Playhouse Box Office at 513-421-3888 (toll-
free in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana at 800-582-3208) or visit www.cincyplay.com. Call 513-345-2248 for Telecommunications Device for the Deaf accessibility.
Performances will begin at 7:30 pm, Tuesdays through Thursdays, at 8 pm on Fridays, 4 and 8
pm on Saturdays and 2 and 7 pm on Sundays. An additional matinee performance is offered at 1 pm on Nov. 7; there will be no public performances on Oct. 31, and no public evening performances on Oct.
14 or Nov. 4. Individual tickets start at just $35 or $40. Tickets to all 7 pm Sunday performances are priced at just $10 for college students with a valid school ID. Student tickets are just $15 on the day of the show for all other performances. Discounted ticket prices for children and teens are available for all productions and are $30 to $45, depending on show and seat location.
For more information, visit Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park’s website.