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The Importance of Being Earnest A trivial comedy for serious people By Oscar Wilde

November 8-16, 2013

The Importance of Being Earnest

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CAST (IN ORDER OF APPEAR ANCE) Algernon Moncrieff......................................................................................................Abednego Samudera Lane............................................................................................................................................. Thaddeus Bruno John Worthing............................................................................................................................Thomas Sebald Lady Bracknell..................................................................................................................Lachrisa Grandberry Gwendolen Fairfax.......................................................................................................................... Emma Prost Miss Prism..............................................................................................................................Kaylin Pappenfuss Cecily Cardew.............................................................................................................................Keela Frederick Rev. Canon Chasuble.............................................................................................................. Joshua Scheibe Merriman................................................................................................................................Kerruan Sheppard

P R O D U C T I O N S TA F F Director........................................................................................................................................ Hannah Stellick Scene Designer................................................................................................................................ Ben Adickes Sound Designer............................................................................................................................. Josh Scheibe Lighting Designer...............................................................................................................Kristen Kraklow ‘11 Costume Designer..................................................................................................... MaryFran Stefanich ‘12 Faculty Advisor........................................................................................................................Prof. Jay Sierszyn Stage Manager.............................................................................................................................Erika Peterson Assistant Stage Manager....................................................................................................Michael Kittelson Dialect Coach.......................................................................................................................Prof. Simon Provan Dramaturg.............................................................................................................................. Kimberly Neuman Master Electrician......................................................................................................................... Ashley DeVos Light Board Operator.................................................................................................................Elaina Helmen Wardrobe.........................................................................................................................................Katlyn Rogers Makeup/Hair Assistant........................................................................................................ Brittany Petersen Sound Board Operator.....................................................................................................................Marah Nitz Props Mistress........................................................................................................................... Alex Richardson Scene Shifters..............................................................................................Ben Adickes, Michael Kittelson, Alex Richardson, Katlyn Rogers, Thaddeus Bruno, Kerruan Sheppard Resident Technical Director......................................................................................... Aaron Siegmann ‘10 WLC Theatre Shop/Tech Staff.................................................Ben Adickes (Shop Mgr), Ashley DeVos, Hannah Greene, Brenda Kolell (Team Leader), Adam Kurth, Kaylin Pappenfuss, Katlyn Rogers (Costume Asst), Hannah Stellick (Costume Mgr), Franco Verges Moore WLC Theatre Administrative Staff...........................................................Michelle East, Keela Frederick, Elaina Helmen, Kyle Marti, Octavia Morton

SET TING

Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest From the Methuen transcription by David Price, 1915 THE TIME OF THE PLAY: The Present THE SCENES OF THE PLAY: ACT I – Early Evening – Algernon Moncrieff’s Flat in Half-Moon Street, West ACT II – Afternoon – The Garden at the Manor House, Woolton ACT III – Later that day – Drawing-Room at the Manor House, Woolton THERE WILL BE INTERMISSIONS BETWEEN THE ACTS 2

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D I R E C TO R ’ S N O T E When I first read The Importance of Being Earnest I knew immediately why it was revered as a classic play. This is true, not only from the language and the story, but also because of its universal themes and modern applications. In so many ways, this play seemed as if it could have been written yesterday. I saw how this play (actually written in 1895) had reached so many audiences—all over the world—with its one central story of love, lies, friendship, and forgiveness. Each of us makes slight adjustments to how we present ourselves depending on the circumstances we find ourselves in. When we are around friends, we portray the side of us that fits into our peer’s expectations. With our family, we strive to act according to their norms of appropriate behavior. Around co-workers, we display a certain balance of professionalism and friendliness while never letting our guard down. And within all of these scenarios, how we interact with the different people we meet at any given point must also be adjusted according to their judgments and expectations. The Importance of Being Earnest is an exploration of what it means to be earnest (sincere) and to come to terms with oneself in finding that truth and honesty. Unfortunately, as Algernon claims, “the truth is rarely pure and never simple,” and finding the strength to be honest can often be fraught with challenges and complications. This is where Jack and Algernon find themselves as they search to have meaningful relationships with the women they love—often, being their own worst enemies. In this we again find ourselves—today. The sinful human beings who cannot—on our own—live in truth and complete honesty and sincerity. Rather, we revel in the triviality of the world, trying to find our strength and significance within it instead of in the One who can give us true peace and strength.

A DV I S O R ’ S N O T E This is a unique production for WLC Theatre as it marks the first time on a “mainstage” show that the director, cast, and artistic design staff has not included a faculty member. Under the direction of senior, Hannah Stellick, and designers Ben Adickes (senior), Joshua Scheibe (junior), MaryFran Stefanich (class of 2012), and Kristen Kraklow (class of 2011) we have been preparing, rehearsing and building The Importance of Being Earnest for the past month or so. All of these students, as Theatre Majors, have passed through a number of courses, but perhaps most significantly for this project: THR 320 – Directing and THR 330 – Theatre Design (now known as THR 315 – Concept and Collaboration). Some of them worked together on class projects, but none of them in the exact roles they undertook for Earnest. As I sat in production meetings, rehearsals, and work calls I never once had cause for stepping in and taking the wheel. Perhaps more than anything else, this production epitomizes our program—one that nurtures students as individuals in the various aspects of the art-form, for working as a cohesive, creative team in new environments.

SPECIAL THANKS Melanie Buellesbach, WLC Marketing and Communication Sunset Playhouse, Elm Grove

The Importance of Being Earnest

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DESIGNERS’ NOTES Benjamin Adickes:The core of my design for this show revolves (when you watch the show you’ll understand that pun) around the concept of prisms: they take light and reveal its more honest base components that work incredibly hard at staying hidden. Depending on the environment in which people are placed, in much the same way as light, they act--and are perceived— differently. We work so hard at keeping our honest components hidden that many times only the intervention of something drastic can help reveal the truth about who we are. Kristen Kraklow: With Importance of Being Earnest, I really wanted to highlight the themes of romance, mystery, theatricality, but most importantly, truth.  The first and second act is filled with farce and secrets so I wove lavenders, ambers and shadows into these scenes for that touch of romance and mystery.  The final scene, however, brings everything to light, both in the story and on the physical stage!  The scenic transitions were my greatest challenge and my greatest joy to create.  The idea was to combine the mystery of the story with the theatricality of shifting scenery. Hope you like the finished project. Thank you to my fellow designers for their collaborative patience; Aaron, Jay, Elaina and especially Ashley for all your patience and hard work; dear Agatha for making her mama proud, and you, for reading this! MaryFran Stefanich: With The Importance of Being Earnest we decided to go historical with a modern twist.  Using a dial, if you will, to “dial in” a character into how modern or old-fashioned they are, either in behavior, or thinking (or both).  For some it is their entire costume, for others it is simply one piece.  With that said, I hope to draw a parallel between the word of the play, 1895, and the present.  With that in mind, I hope you enjoy the show. 

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Wisconsin Lutheran College


T H E AT R E AT W I S C O N S I N L U T H E R A N C O L L E G E The curriculum and activities of the Theatre Department are designed to explore, investigate and develop the creative process and cultural significance of story-telling in performance.    We foster an integrated liberal arts approach distinguished by breadth in theatre study and a focus on analytical, critical, and creative thinking—especially with regard to the role of theatre in community and the application of theatre-related skills, knowledge and attitudes to many areas of life.  The Major and Minor programs in theatre prepare students through a foundational understanding of the Lutheran doctrine of vocation that all labors are to be in service to one’s neighbor.  To that end, the theatre program endeavors to prepare Christ-centered professional and amateur actors, artists, practitioners, managers and educators whose leadership and impact, we pray, will be significant today and tomorrow. The production programs of the department offer numerous co- and extra-curricular opportunities for all students in the college.  It is our vision that through engagement with vital theatre experiences all of our students will seek to thrive as active audience members for the rest of their lives—contributing to, and therefore affecting, the broader culture in which we live. Theatre can play a role in a culture or community’s understanding of themselves and others around them.  Producing theatre which is vital in a community requires exploring topics and presenting works that attempt to be truthful or seek truth—for some, many, or all of us.  We certainly do not select topics intending to offend, yet we acknowledge that the content of drama is always humans, which we know are in a sinful condition— one that needs repair.  Our characters and their circumstances are representative in a given situation, they are less often models to be followed.  It is our hope that each and every person in the audience be provoked intellectually and emotionally to consider their own life in response to the world of the play, and that the reflection and discussion continues beyond the theatre doors. BIOGR APHIES Benjamin Adickes (Set Designer) is thrilled and honoured to be part of the production team for this groundbreaking show. Yet again, he is doing something for a production that he’s never done before. It’s proved to be a valuable experience and he hopes he’ll have more like it in the future. Thaddeus Bruno (Lane) a freshman, is delighted to make his WLC debut! No stranger to the stage, Thaddeus has played Peter Cratchit, Boy Scrooge, Dick Wilkins and Ensemble in the Milwaukee Repertory Theater’s

production of A Christmas Carol. He has also appeared at the Chamber Theater and First Stage Children Theater among other professional venues. He has thoroughly enjoyed working on this production and is excited for his future on or behind the WLC stage.   Keela Frederick (Cecily Cardew) is a sophomore Theatre and Psychology major. This is the fifth show at WLC she has been involved with, the most recent being Lighting Assistant/ Board Op for Becky’s New Car. Keela would like to thank the director for this fun and wonderful opportunity, the cast for all the laughs, and her family for their unending love and support. The Importance of Being Earnest

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BIOGR APHIES

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Lachrisa Grandberry (Lady Bracknell) is a senior Theatre and Communication Major and she is excited to take part in her 8th Raabe theatre production!  Her experience at WLC has been quite the Blessing! She wants to thank her support team who has encouraged and inspired her through it all! She hopes you enjoy the production! Michael Kittelson (Assistant Stage Manager) is a junior at WLC, and is excited to be the Assistant Stage Manager for “Earnest”.  He has had a blast working with the cast and crew! This is his sixth WLC production, and is looking forward to many more to come! He would like to thank Hannah Stellick for her awesome direction throughout the entire production. Kristen Kraklow (Lighting Designer) is happy to be part of this creative production team!  After graduating from WLC in 2011 with a degree in Theatre, Kristen currently works as the Production/Volunteer Coordinator at Sunset Playhouse where she gets to wear multiple hats and work with passionate artists.  Thanks goes to the my heavenly Dad, my family and friends for their ever-present ears, and my roommates who keep me alive! Kaylin Pappenfuss (Miss Prism) is a sophomore studying pre-veterinary medicine. Her favorite parts of this production were the costumes, the dialect, and the people. 

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Wisconsin Lutheran College

Erika Peterson (Stage Manager) is a junior Communicative Arts major. Her college experience has consisted of Assistant Stage Manager for Marvin’s Room and The Winter’s Tale, as well as Stage Manager for Lover’s and the Like, The Bending of the Bow, and The Importance of Being Earnest. This show has been a lot of fun for her to work on. She thanks her mom and dad for all their support and God for this wonderful opportunity. Emma Prost (Gwendolen Fairfax) is delighted to make her theatrical debut on the WLC stage. She has previously played roles from Shakespeare to E. B. White, performing in many high school productions and competing successfully in the Forensics categories of Humorous Interp and Play Acting. Emma is a junior majoring in English literature. She would like to thank the theatre family for welcoming her. Alex Richardson (Props Master) is a sophmore who is majoring in Nursing. She has been involved with several Wisconsin Lutheran College theatre productions, including Becky’s New Car, Bending of the Bow, and The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940. After being Props Master for The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 with her friend, Keela Frederick, she will be taking this part on her own for this production! She hopes you enjoy the show! Katlyn Rogers (Wardrobe) is a freshman this year at WLC and plans to major in Theatre with a possible minor in Music.  She was recently involved with Becky’s New Car, acting as Costume Design Assistant.  She currently serves backstage for Wardrobe and will be onstage helping change sets.  She considers herself incredibly blessed to be a part of the Theatre family here, and would like to thank everyone for their time, knowledge, and warm welcome.  She would also like to personally thank Hannah Stellick for her mentorship, and for letting her be a part of an incredible experience.


BIOGR APHIES

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Abednego Samudera (Algernon Moncrieff ) is delighted to be a part of The Importance of Being Earnest. Born in Indonesia, the challenge of playing a British character from 1890’s British upper class society is one that he looks forward to. Other shows include: New York, The Winter’s Tale, The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940, and Becky’s New Car. He would like to thank all the members of WLC’s Theater for this opportunity, the cast and crew of the show, Simon Provan for teaching him the British dialect, and family and friends for their continuous support. Joshua Scheibe (Rev. Canon Chasuble, Sound Designer) is a junior this year and has appeared in seven Raabe productions before Earnest, most recently as Joe Foster in Becky’s New Car. He has been involved with sound design in two other shows, The Bending of the Bow and Beeluther-hatchee. During the rehearsal process for Earnest, he reprised his role as Gerry Holmes for a staged reading of Deanna Strasse’s Lovers and the Like at the Underground Collaborative in Milwaukee. He is excited to appear as Dr. Chasuble, as this marks the fourth British character he’s played in seven years. Thomas Sebald (John Worthing) is a sophomore theatre major and has appeared on the WLC stage in The Bending of the Bow, BeeLuther-Hatchee, and Becky’s New Car. He is thrilled to bring the role of Jack (and Ernest) to life in The Importance of Being Earnest. Love to the whole cast, crew, and especially his family in Arizona. Soli Deo Gloria.

Kerruan Sheppard (Merriman) is a freshman planning to major in Elementary education. He has enjoyed spending long nights and sometimes short nights with the cast and crew of The Importance of Being Earnest. His favorite part of the production was spending time with incredibly talented people and hilarious moments in rehearsal. MaryFran Stefanich (Costume Design) Graduate from 2012, is excited to be back working on the Raabe stage.  This is her second show wearing the costume designer hat (she costumed New York fall of ’11) and couldn’t be more thrilled.  Sit back and enjoy the show! Hannah Stellick (Director) is a senior double majoring in Elementary Education and Theatre. Hannah has had many opportunities in theatre – from costume designing Becky’s New Car (Fall 2013), stage managing Bee-Luther-Hatchee (Spring 2013), acting as Nikki Crandall in The Musical Comedy Murders of the 1940s (Spring 2013) – and now has been blessed to direct on the Raabe stage. The Importance of Being Earnest serves as her senior showcase piece and she is excited to share this experience with you. To all those who guided, supported, encouraged, and came with her on this journey; words cannot express how blessed and thankful she is to have had you. Thank you.

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2013-14 WLC Theatre Season BECKY’S NEW CAR It’s not just a vehicle . . . By Steven Dietz Directed by Simon Provan September 21-29, 2013 Milwaukee Premiere!

The Importance of Being Earnest A trivial comedy for serious people. By Oscar Wilde Directed by Hannah Stellick November 8-16, 2013

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Wisconsin Lutheran College


Wisconsin Lutheran College - The Importance of Being Earnest