By Noel Coward
Noel Coward, one of England’s greatest playwrights, will help us cast of the winter blues with this bright and breezy comedy. Star of the London stage, Judith Bliss, her author husband and two children are all hopelessly self absorbed. When each of them invites a guest for the weekend without telling anyone in the family, madness ensues as more and more people arrive. With Coward’s trademark witty repartee, and wildly comic situations, the weekend dissolves into insanity as the unsuspecting guests end up fleeing the insensitive Bliss family.
DELIGHTFUL 'HAY FEVER' NOT TO BE SNEEZED AT
Maine Sunday Telegram, January 21, 2007 (Excerpts)
By Steve Feeney
...armed with some of the play's funniest lines, Poirier takes charge of every scene she's in. This role plays to her proven talents for evincing the diva. ...overall, a fast-paced treat of an evening at the theater. ...is set in a period room designed by Craig Robinson with an intentionally eclectic decor... ...this family knows how to have some fun and, as the characters pair off for their various and hilarious little romances, the laughs pile up. When the guests finally realize they've been "played" and the Blisses go off into their own sort of theatrical Nirvana, it's one of the great moments in comedy and this GT production, directed by Brian P. Allen and Robert Fish, brings it all home in a perfectly delightful way.
FIND YOUR BLISS... SNEEZING WITH LAUGHTER AT HAY FEVER
The Portland Phoenix, January 24, 2007 (Excerpts)
By Megan Grumbling
First of all, young Sorel Bliss (Jessica Peck, with lovely, blithe arrogance) has invited a diplomatist named Richard (Stephen Underwood) to the house for the weekend, and one would think he would come in handy as the house fills. Her brother Simon (agile Ian Carlsen) has also entreated a visit from his own current interest, the socialite widow Myra Arundel (Elizabeth Chambers, utterly and exquisitely blasé). Then there are the heads of the house. Sorel and Simon's mother Judith (the formidable Denise Poirier), a retired stage actress, has invited fresh-faced ingénue boxer Sandy (Brian Chamberlain) for a little rejuvenation. Finally, Bliss père David (Tony Reilly), a self-absorbed novelist, has called upon a flighty flapper (Carolyn Turner) for his own weekend inspiration.
This Allen/Fish cast is as scintillating as I've come to expect from the virtuoso Good Theater, and it's particularly fun to see actors from elsewhere in the theater community, like Reilly, Carlsen, and Chambers, working alongside Good Theater regulars like Underwood, Peck, and Poirier.
...its success is in its characters and repartee, and the Good Theater's actors make them buoyantly entertaining. This production of Hay Fever, another in the growing list of Good Theater tours de force, makes gleefully scandalous haymaking of this weekend of Bliss.
Directed by Brian P. Allen & Robert Fish
Judith Bliss - Denise Poirier
David Bliss - Tony Reilly
Simon Bliss - Ian Carleson
Sorel Bliss - Jessica Peck
Richard Greatham - Stephen Underwood
Myra Arundel - Liz Chambers
Jackie Coryton - Carolyn Turner
Sandy Tyrell - Brian Chamberlain
Clara - Cathy Counts
Set Design - Craig Robinson
Lighting Design - Jamie Grant
Technical Director - Stephen Underwood
Assistant Technical Director - Craig Robinson
Set Construction Crew - Gary Thayer, Merle Broberg, Lynda Wilson, Donna Graves
* Member Actors' Equity Association