SHREVEPORT, LA -- Tennessee Williams' little known play A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur opens at the Marjorie Lyons Playhouse on the 30th of May for a seven performance run through the 9th of June. A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur opened in New York City on January 10, 1979 with Shirley Knight, Peg Murray, Charlotte Moore, and Jane Lowry in the cast. The Marjorie Lyons Playhouse production is co-directed by Robert Buseick and Patric McWilliams with an outstanding cast of local actresses. Don Hooper is the set and light designer, Patric McWilliams has designed the costumes, and Ryan Williams is serving as assistant to the directors and property master.
Heading the cast as Dorothea is Stephanie Renee Huffman. Stephanie will be remembered for her outstanding performances at Marjorie Lyons Playhouse as the lead in Marvin's Room and as Sister Woman in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Stephanie works as promotions assistant at KMSS Fox 33 and as the Kids Club Host. She has appeared in supporting roles at MLP in productions of Talk Radio, Big River, The Devils, and Red Scare on Sunset.
Candace Higginbotham portrays the landlady, Bodey Bodenhafer. Candace most recently took over for an ailing actress and portrayed the female character in Shreveport Little Theatre's The Gin Game. She is also the president of the SLT Board of Directors. At Marjorie Lyons Playhouse, Candace has appeared in Dancing at Lughnasa, Eleemosynary, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Other local productions that she has appeared in have been Painting Churches, Fiddler on the Roof, and The Cemetery Club. Candace is Bureau Chief of the Community Services Bureau in the City of Shreveport's Department of Community Development.
Playing the role of Helena Brookmire is MLP newcomer Marcia Cassanova. Marcia works as a court clerk to a United States Magistrate Judge. She has appeared at SLT in Breakfast with Les and Bess, The Swan Song, and Zorba. At Bossier Parish Community College she has been in Dark of the Moon and Lend Me a Tenor, and at Eastbank she was in The Curious Savage, The Great Nebula in Orion, and Anastasia.
Rounding out the cast of four is veteran actress Memory Lee Streun as the frightened upstairs neighbor Miss Gluck, who speaks very little English. Other Tennessee Williams plays at Marjorie Lyons Playhouse for Memory Lee are roles in Suddenly, Last Summer, Vieux Carre, and Sweet Bird of Youth. She will be fondly remembered for her performances in Steel Magnolias, Driving Miss Daisy, Toy in the Attic, The Heiress, Ladies First, Madame de Sade, The Royal Family, The Women, Peg O My Heart, Marvin's Room, and All the Way Home.
It is a warm June morning in the West End of St. Louis in the mid 1930's - a lovely Sunday for a picnic at Creve Coeur Lake. But Dorothea, one of Tennessee Williams' most engaging "marginally youthful," forever hopeful Southern belles, is home waiting for a phone call from the principal of the high school where she teaches civics - the man she expects to fulfill her deferred dreams of romance and matrimony.
Williams' unerring dialogue reveals each of the four characters of A Lovely Sunday For Creve Coeur with precision and clarity -- Dorothea, who does even her "setting-up exercises" with poignant flutters; Bodey, her German roommate, who wants to pair Dotty with her beer-drinking twin, Buddy, thereby assuring nieces, nephews, and a family for both herself and Dotty; Helena, a fellow teacher, with the "eyes of a predatory bird," who would like to "rescue" Dotty from her vulgar, common surroundings and substitute an elegant but sterile spinster life; and Miss Gluck, a distraught neighbor whom Bodey comforts with coffee and crullers while Helena mocks them both.
Focusing on one morning and one encounter of four women, Williams skillfully explores, with comic irony and great tenderness, the meaning of loneliness, the need for human connection, as well as the inevitable compromises one must make to get through "the long run of life."
A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur plays at Marjorie Lyons Playhouse May 30, 31, June 1, 6, 7, 8 at 8 p.m. and on Sunday, June 9 at 2 p.m. The box office opens May 23 and is open each day from noon until 4 p.m. for ticket reservations. The box office telephone number is 869-5242. Ticket prices for A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur are: Adults - $12; Senior Citizens - $10; Students - $7.50; and Children 12 and under - $5. A group rate of $2 off per ticket is available for groups of 20 or more.