By Miguel Gastelum
University Theatre decks the halls – and stage – this holiday season with the Central Valley premiere of “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley” by Lauren Gunderson & Margot Melcon. The production is directed by Brad Myers and runs December 7 – 15, 2018 in the John Wright Theatre in the Speech Arts building on the campus of Fresno State.
Tickets are $17 for adults; $15 for Fresno State faculty, staff, alumni and military; and $10 for all students. Children under 5 not admitted. Group rates are available for groups of 20 or more. Box office hours are noon to 4 p.m. on weekdays and one hour before each performance.
December 7 – 8 & December 11 – 15 performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and the December 9 performance begins at 2:00 p.m. Latecomers will be seated at the House Manager’s discretion.
Parking is free for shows on Friday through Sunday night. For shows on Tuesday through Thursday night, parking permits are required and can be purchased at dispensers in parking lots on campus.
“Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley”, was first produced in 2016 in a Rolling World Premiere. “Miss Bennet” is a sequel to Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice”, set in 1815, two years after the novel ends. The play continues the story of the Bennet sisters, only this time with bookish middle-sister Mary as its unlikely heroine. Mary is growing tired of her role as dutiful middle sister in the face of her siblings’ romantic escapades. Lizzy and Mr. Darcy are happily settled into their new marriage; Jane and Charles are also blissfully married and expecting their first child; Lydia, though still married to the scandalous Mr. Wickham, is as flirtatious as ever. When the family gathers for Christmas at Pemberley, Mr. Darcy’s estate, an unexpected guest sparks Mary’s hopes for independence, an intellectual match, and possibly even love. Period sensibilities meet modern day feminism in this delightful romantic comedy.
“At its heart, the story of ‘Miss Bennet’ is a romantic comedy blended with all the familiar entrapments of a Christmas family reunion.” Says director Brad Myers. “Additionally, the elegance of the Regency Period and the charm of Jane Austen’s characters, complete the recipe for a joyous holiday event. I am hoping Central Valley audiences will take a break during the hectic holiday season and breathe in the love and laughter of ‘Miss Bennet.’”
“…a new Christmas classic…a perfectly constructed love story,” said Lily Janiak, The San Francisco Chronicle.
The cast includes Jacob Franz, Jimmy Haynie, Ian Jones, Krishan Joshi, Teya Juarez, Alexis Macedo, Sofia McCurry, Erik Olson, Evangelia Pappas, and Madeline Rydberg.
For more information, contact the box office at 559.278.2216 or firstname.lastname@example.org.