The Importance of Being Earnest

The Importance of Being Earnest

A Sparkling Classic Comedy

July 25 - August 23, 2014
Springer Theatre

“The truth is rarely pure and simple.”




By Oscar Wilde
Directed by Daryl Cloran

  • Wealthy playboys Jack and Algernon have been leading double lives to escape from the humdrum of polite society. But when they both begin to use the same alias “Ernest” to woo different women, hilarious chaos erupts! Complete with a flurry of mistaken identities, witty banter and cucumber sandwiches, this scintillating comedy will have you laughing out loud!

    “A rare work of art that achieves perfection on its own terms.”
    - New York Times

    “One of the funniest plays in the English Language!”
    - The Hollywood Reporter

  • Springer Theatre Logo

    Playing at the Springer Theatre
    from July 25 - August 23, 2014

    Evening Performances: Tuesday through Saturday 8:00pm
    Matinees: Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday 2:30pm

    Running Time:
 2 hours, 25 minutes (including intermission)

  • Cast

    Algernon: Brett Christopher
    Lane/Merriman: Ian D.Clark
    Cecily: Tess Degenstein
    Gwendolen: Alison Deon
    Miss Prism: Deborah Drakeford
    Lady Bracknell: Martha Irving
    Reverend Chasuble: Jody Richardson
    Jack: Kirk Smith


    Director: Daryl Cloran
    Set & Costume Designer: Dana Osborne
    Sound Designer: Kevin Tighe
    Lighting Designer: Oz Weaver
    Stage Manager: Kate Porter
    Assistant Stage Manager: Jessica Severin
    Dialect Coach: Dorothy Ward

    For the Playhouse: Boeing Boeing, The Clockmaker.
    Elsewhere: Vigil (Theatre Kingston); I Am My Own Wife, Dangerous Liaisons (Segal Theatre, Montreal); The Gladstone Variations, Autoshow (Convergence Theatre); Antony & Cleopatra (Shakespeare in the Rough); Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage); Family Stories: Belgrade, The Sea (ARC); A Midsummer Night's Dream, Romeo & Juliet, As You Like It (Theatre by the Bay); Mary's Wedding (Theatre & Co.); The Importance of Being Earnest (Port Hope); Henry & Pierre, the watch for sunrise (Buddies in Bad Times).
    Other:  Brett is currently a member of the Langham Conservatory for Classical Direction at the Stratford Festival and was the Assistant Director on this season's A Midsummer Night's Dream. 
    Upcoming:  Director of Venus in Fur (Theatre Kingston) in November 2014.

    IAN D. CLARK (Lane/Merriman)
    For the Playhouse: Trying, Till it hurts, Half Life, Assorted Candies.
    Elsewhere: The Foreigner, Stuff Happens (Royal Alexandra); Cock (Studio 180 – Toronto Theatre Critics Award); British Rubbish (Bradford Centre, Boston – Broadway optioned- author/star); Constant Wife (Coconut Grove, Miami – Best Actor); Humble Boy (Tarragon); Singer (Canadian Stage).
    TV/Film: Equus, Lilies, 32 Short Films about Glenn Gould, That Old Feeling, Cruel Intentions 2, The Arrow,  The Associates, The Boy in Blue, Saving Hope, Flashpoint, Reign, Road to Avonlea (Simon Tremayne).
    Other: Stratford/Shaw Festival veteran. Lead roles on every major Canadian stage. Invited 9 times to the famed Walnut St Theatre, Philadelphia. Ian has appeared with all the major Hollywood studios. He is a playwright; holds an M.A. (McGill) and is a jury member of the Canadian Academy, and despite an international career, is pleased to make his home with his family, in Kingston. 

    DARYL CLORAN (Director)
    For the Playhouse: Boeing Boeing, Till it Hurts and Hockey Mom, Hockey Dad.
    Elsewhere:  Tribes (Canadian Stage/Theatrefront/Theatre Aquarius); Afterplay (Shaw Festival); All for Love (National Arts Centre); Generous (Tarragon); This is How it Goes (Neptune); The Last Five Years (Canadian Stage and Manitoba Theatre Centre); Les Misérables, Fiddler on the RoofNoises Off (Western Canada Theatre); UBUNTU (The Cape Town Project); RETURN (The Sarajevo Project); The Mill (Theatrefront); Time Stands Still (Theatre Aquarius).
    Upcoming: Liberation Days (Theatre Calgary); Peter & the Starcatcher (WCT).
    Other: Daryl has received the Canada Council’s John Hirsch Prize for Outstanding Emerging Director, the Toronto Theatre Emerging Artist Award and Halifax’s Merritt Award for Outstanding Direction. He is the Artistic Director of Western Canada Theatre in Kamloops, British Columbia and the Founding Artistic Director of Theatrefront (Toronto).

    For the Playhouse: Boeing Boeing.
    Elsewhere: Time Stands Still (Theatre Aquarius); The Wizard of OzThe Alice Nocturne (The Globe Theatre); Sylvia (Mayfield); Death of a SalesmanAs You Like It (Citadel Theatre); An Almost Perfect Thing (Workshop West, Sterling Nomination); three seasons with the FreeWill Players; What Gives?(Teatro la Quindicina); Murdoch Mysteries (CBC Television); King (Showcase); and the award-winning webseries, Space Janitors.
    Other: Tess also performs regularly with a variety of improv companies - most notably The Bad Dog Repertory Playersand she has guested with various troupes around the world - recently in London, Berlin, Oslo, and Vienna. She is a regular contributor to the popular Toronto Lifestyle blog She Does the City.
    Upcoming: Mary’s Wedding (Golden Apple Theatre); Boeing Boeing (Theatre Aquarius); The 39 Steps (Western Canada Theatre). 

    ALISON DEON (Gwendolen)
    For the Playhouse: Boeing Boeing, Somewhere Beyond The Sea.
    Elsewhere:  Favourite theatre credits include The Railway Children (Mirvish); The Little Years and The 39 Steps (Magnus); Romeo & Juliet, The Secret Garden (Resurgence); The Shape of a Girl (First Light); Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (Touchmark); The Miser (Sudbury Theatre Centre); Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night, London Assurance (Stratford).
    Upcoming:  Alison is a Teaching Artist for the Stratford Festival and Shakespeare in Action, and the dialect coach for Educating Rita this summer at TIP.
    Other:  Alison couldn’t be happier to be back at the Playhouse. Thanks to Ashlie, Daryl and this terrific cast and crew. 

    For the Playhouse: Debut.
    Elsewhere: Some favourite shows include: Bea - 2013, Dora nomination, The City - 2010, A Kind of Alaska - 2006 (Actors Repertory Company (ARC) of which she sits on the Artistic Board); Great Expectations - 2013, Waiting For The Parade - 2010, A Christmas Carol -8 times (Soulpepper Theatre Company); and many others. 
    Upcoming: Waiting for the Parade (Thousand Islands Playhouse - a co-pro with Western Canada Theatre); ARC's The Moment and Deb will reprise her role as Mrs. Cratchit for Soulpepper. Deb also holds a BEd degree and teaches across the Greater Toronto Area. She lives in Toronto with her husband, actor Oliver Dennis, and their children, Charlotte and Philip.
    Other: Deb has enjoyed a great theatrical career that has taken her across the country, but this is her first time in Gananoque so she is delighted! She is excited to work with both Daryl Cloran and Ashlie Corcoran this season. 

    MARTHA IRVING (Lady Bracknell)
    For the PlayhouseThe (Post) Mistress.
    Elsewhere:  Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud), Mary Poppins, , Blithe Spirit, Cabaret (Neptune); The Glace Bay Miners Museum 
(Neptune/ NAC); Molly’s Veil (WCTC); The (Post) Mistress (Ship’s Co./ Neptune); Top Girls, Estate, The Monument, To Capture Light, Ghosts (LunaSea); Charlie’s Aunt, Into the Woods (ATF). Selected Film: Roaming (ACTRA Maritimes Best Actress Award nomination); Faith, Fraud, and Minimum Wage; Just Buried; Snow Angels; and Thom Fitzgerald’s The Hanging Garden. Selected Television: Call Me Fitz, Trudeau, October 1970, Black Harbour, Pit Pony, Haven and numerous movies of the week. 
    Upcoming: Ibsen Bites (LunaSea Theatre); Rexy! (Neptune).
    Other: Winner of 2014 Best Actress Merritt Award and the 2011 Mayor’s Award for Achievement in Theatre. Founder and Co-Artistic Associate of LunaSea Theatre in Halifax, NS. Thanks and love to Anthony. This performance is dedicated to Vanessa Walton-Bone, a mighty Augusta. 

    DANA OSBORNE (Set & Costume Designer)
    For the Playhouse: Boeing Boeing. 
    Elsewhere: Man of La Mancha, Hayfever (Stratford Festival, 14 seasons); The God Who Comes (Alberta Theatre Projects); Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Parfumerie (Soulpepper); Tribes (Theatrefront/Canadian Stage/Theatre Aquarius), The Passion of Narcisse Mondoux (Grand)
    Upcoming: To Kill A Mockingbird (YPT), The Ladies Foursome (Grand). 
    Other: Cooper Award for Costume Design 2012, Dora Awards (The Mill – Theatrefront, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead - Soulpepper).

    KATE PORTER (Stage Manager)
    For the Playhouse: The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Drowsy Chaperone, Les Misérables, The Red Priest and, as ASM, Anne & Gilbert.
    Elsewhere: The God That Comes (2b Theatre Company); Tribes (Theatrefront / Canadian Stage); Messiah (Against the Grain); Don Giovanni (Royal Conservatory of Music); The Amorous Adventures of Anatol (Tarragon Theatre); The Secret Garden (Banff Centre for the Arts); Ubuntu (The Cape Town Project) (Theatrefront / Tarragon Theatre / Western Canada Theatre); Noises Off (Western Canada Theatre).
    Upcoming: Carmen (Vancouver Opera); Sextet (Tarragon Theatre).

    JODY RICHARDSON (Reverend Chasuble)
    For the Playhouse: Debut. 
    Elsewhere:  Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud).
    Upcoming:  Colony Of Unrequited Dreams (Artistic Fraud). Jody will also be assembling/composing the sound design for TIP's 2014 production of Educating Rita. 
    Other: Extremely honoured and delighted to be working on this great piece, with such an exceptional cast/crew, for this extremely impressive company, at this beautiful theatre.  

    JESSICA SEVERIN (Assistant Stage Manager)
    For the Playhouse:  Suds, Somewhere Beyond the Sea.
    Elsewhere:  World Pride 2014 Opening Ceremonies/Allan Gardens (Pride Toronto); Persée (Royal Opera Versailles, Opera Atelier); Do You Want What I Have Got? A Craigslist Cantata (Citadel Theatre, Alberta Theatre Project, Acting Up Stage); Parfumerie, La Ronde, A Christmas Carol (Soulpepper); This Wide Night (Summerworks); Billy Elliot (Mirvish Productions). Other credits include eight seasons with Soulpepper, five seasons with Opera Atelier, and shows with Volcano, Mirvish Productions, Obsidian Theatre,  Tarragon, Tapestry New Opera, Nightwood, Theatre Smith Gilmour, Drayton Entertainment, Nuit Blanche and George Brown Theatre.
    Upcoming: Educating Rita (Thousand Islands Playhouse).

    KIRK SMITH (Jack)
    For the Playhouse: Boeing Boeing.
    Elsewhere: Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me (Dancing Monkey Presents); Les Misérables, Noises Off, Fiddler on the Roof, Seussical; A Christmas Carol, Wit (Western Canada Theatre); The Rocky Horror Show, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Twelfth Night, Compleat Wrks…, Romeo and Juliet, James and the Giant Peach (Project X); Leading Ladies, The Importance of Being Earnest, Little Shop of Horrors (Persephone Theatre); Home Ice (Theatre North West); A Shayna Maidel (Chemainus Theatre Festival); Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog (Relephant Theatre); History Boys (Arts Club).
    Upcoming: Peter and the Starcatcher (Western Canada Theatre).
    Other: Kirk had so much fun last summer in Boeing Boeing, and he is happy to come spend another summer in Gananoque with some of his other crazy castmates from that show and some very talented new friends. This time he looks forward to spending more time standing up. 

    KEVIN TIGHE (Sound Designer)
    For the Playhouse: Debut.
    Elsewhere: And All for Love (National Arts Centre - 2008);  The Raven (Toronto Fringe - 2006).
    Other: Award winning composer for TV and theatre, Kevin Tighe has written music for hit TV shows that air all over the world.  From the theme music for Deconstructed to 91 episodes of How It’s Made, Kevin’s work is heard by millions globally every week. Kevin last worked with director Daryl Cloran at the National Arts Centre in 2008 where he wrote renaissance period music for the play And All for Love.  He’s delighted to be writing period-style music again for a great company and a great production!  For more:

    OZ WEAVER (Lighting Designer)
    For the Playhouse: Debut.
    Else Where: Open Art Surgery (Harbourfront Centre); Lungs & Soliciting Temptation (Tarragon Theatre, Co-LD w/ Kim Purtell); Tale of a Tshirt (FIXT POINT); In Pace Requiescat (OperaFive); Fall 2013 Season (ProArteDanza); Glenn Gould Prize Jury Gala (The Sony Centre for the Performing Arts); The Whole Shebang (Dreamwalker Dance Company); Mozart’s Don Giovanni (Koerner Hall, Co-LD w/ Kim Purtell).
    Upcoming: Passage, New Work & Idiom (Kemi Contemporary Dance Projects - Canadian Tour); New Work (Kaeja d’Dance - Enwave Theatre, Toronto); This is a Costume Drama (The Dietrich Group - Fleck Theatre, Toronto).
    Other: Oz is a Toronto based lighting designer, production manager and producer who has helped create over 75 shows. He has been nominated for a Brickenden award, and has won two Dish Awards for his designs of Into the Woods & Phantom of The Opera. He is also currently the Executive Director & Producer for The Dietrich Group with Artistic Direction by D.A. Hoskins.

  • Photos

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    The Importance of Being Earnest, 2014. Brett Christopher, Ian D.Clark, Tess Degenstein, Alison Deon, Deborah Drakeford, Martha Irving, Jody Richardson, Kirk, Smith. Photos by Jay Kopinski.


    Ashlie's Inside Story

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    Audience Reactions

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  • Reviews

    A comedic masterpiece - Kingston Whig Standard

    Proper Victorian Humour Proves Timeless - A Fresh News Start

    Preview Articles

    The Thousand Islands Playhouse Goes Wilde! - Kingston Heritage Newspaper

    Comedy veterans return for The Importance of Being Earnest - Gananoque Reporter

    No doubt side splitting laughter will fill the house - EMC Newspaper

    Actor's Road to Success - Kingston Whig Standard


    Eastern Ontario Network Video Preview - Eastern Ontario Network

    CKWS TV sneak peek - CKWS TV Kingston

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