Celeste Coburn, left, and Darwin Miller, right, in a scene from “The Heiress.”
The Wimberley Players opens their 2011 season with the Tony Award winning play “The Heiress” on Friday. The play, directed by Robert FitzGerald, is an adaption by Ruth and Augustus Goetz of the Henry James novel Washington Square.
Set in the drawing room of an affluent residential area of New York City in the 1850s, “The Heiress” tells the story of Catherine Sloper, a woman who is not gifted with either beauty or social charms, and the handsome suitor of whom her domineering father is suspicious. It is a tale of greed, love, hope, betrayal and the fragility of human relationships. There are twists in the story that may surprise the audience.
The cast includes Darwin Miller as Dr. Austin Sloper, Celeste Coburn as Catherine Sloper, Deanna Lalich as Mrs. Lavinia “Aunt” Penniman, Rana Haddad as Mrs. Elizabeth Almond, and Miranda Plescher as Marian Almond. Also in the cast are Arik Yates as Arthur Townsend, Kate Conroy as Maria, the maid, Rebecca Smootz as Mrs. Montgomery, and David McCullars as the handsome and inscrutable Morris Townsend.
Bert Flanagan of Costumed Occassions is the costume designer for the prodution and Pennye Graves is the set decorator. Bill Peters directs the lighting for the play.
A Goetz-authored adaptation was also made into a movie in 1949. Directed by William Wyler, the cast included Olivia de Haviland, Ralph Richardson and Montgomery Clift with a score written by Aaron Copeland.
The Wimberly Players production will run from Feb. 18-March 13, with evening performances at 8 p.m. and matinees on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. at the Wimberly Playhouse, 450 Old Kyle Road in Wimberley. Tickets for the opening night performance on Feb. 18, which includes a pre-show reception, are $20. Tickets for the following shows are $18.
Tickets may be purchased at the box office prior to each show or by visiting www.wimberleyplayers.org. Box office hours during the week are on Wednesday and Thursday from 2-5 p.m.