The Show Goes On at The Naples Players

The theater will stage By the Way, Meet Vera Stark by two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage, beginning October 19

Photo courtesy of The Naples Players
Photo courtesy of The Naples Players

The Naples Players is open and continuing its commitment to bringing world-class productions to the community. The theater will continue its season with By the Way, Meet Vera Stark, a play by two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage. This performance draws inspiration from the screwball films of the 1930s to take a funny and irreverent look at racial stereotypes in Hollywood. The play will hit the Tobye Studio stage October 19 through November 6, and is sponsored locally by Riptide Brewing Company.

It’s the Golden Age of Hollywood, and aspiring starlet Vera Stark (Rudeline Voltaire) works as a maid to Gloria Mitchell (Jennifer Mance), an aging star grasping at her fading career. Worlds collide when Vera lands a trailblazing role in an antebellum epic starring her boss.

While Vera’s portrayal of an enslaved woman is groundbreaking, scholars and film buffs grapple with the actress’ legacy in Hollywood and the impact that race had on her controversial career decades later. This fast-paced satire will take audiences on a seventy-year journey through Vera’s life and the cultural climate that shaped her.

The Naples Players and the show’s director, Christine Cirker, worked with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion consultant Sonya McCarter to bring this play to the stage.

“I am excited to see this beautiful, thought-provoking play brought to this esteemed stage. This play is rich with humor and social commentary—with imagery that evokes a sense of nostalgia for what was and a yearning for what can be—and with complex characters that demand to be seen and heard,” said McCarter. “This play deserves an audience that is as diverse as its cast. It’s important to tell stories that represent the diverse communities in which we live, and it is equally important to create a space that invites those communities to participate in the beautiful exchange of words, emotions, and experiences that live theatre facilitates.”

Join The Naples Players for a free red carpet event on October 19, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. The event features local vendors, food, drinks, and music by Chariot.

Performances are on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m. General public tickets are on sale for $47 at the box office. Season ticket holders are offered a price of $37. Click here or call the box office at (239) 263-7990 for more information.

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