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Northwestern Theatre in February

‘Nickel and Dimed,’ ‘The Pajama Game,’ ‘The Magistrate’ and Imagine U among events

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January 25, 2013 | by Judy Moore
The 71st Annual Dolphin Show presents “My Fair Lady," the story of Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle. 

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Post-holiday theatrical entertainment for all ages is in the offing on the Evanston campus this winter by the Theatre and Interpretation Center (TIC) at Northwestern University.

Performances of Joan Holden’s thought-provoking play “Nickel and Dimed,” based on investigative journalist Barbara Ehrenreich’s best-selling book, “Nickel and Dimed, On (Not) Getting By in America,” will be staged from Feb. 1 to 10, at the Josephine Louis Theater. It explores the effects of welfare reform on America’s “working poor.”

“The Pajama Game,” a light-hearted musical with a score by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross, will be presented from Feb. 15 to March 3, at the Ethel M. Barber Theater. The production will be directed by Marriott Theatre artistic associate Peter Sullivan.

As an added treat for season subscribers and single ticket holders, TIC will also present a one-night-only screening of the 1957 film version of “The Pajama Game,” starring Doris Day and John Raitt, at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18, at the Barber Theater. Tickets are $10.

The Feb. 4 National Theatre Live broadcast will feature Academy Award-nominee and Tony Award-winner John Lithgow in the title role of Arthur Wing Pinero’s hit London comedy, “The Magistrate.”

The Imagine U family production for children aged 5 to 10 and their families is “The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley,” based on Jeff Brown’s book “Flat Stanley.” Performances have been extended through Feb. 24 at the Mussetter-Struble Theater. 

The Second-Year MFA Collaborations Series will kick off with “Machinal” from Feb. 15 to 23 at the Hal and Martha Hyer Wallis Theater.

The final performances of the 71st Annual Dolphin Show production of Lerner and Loewe’s “My Fair Lady” will take place at Cahn Auditorium. The show opens Jan. 25 and runs through Feb. 2. One of the country’s largest student-produced musicals, it features 40 Northwestern student cast members. For information on the show’s history, visit www.nudolphinshow.org/about-dolphin/.

Except where otherwise indicated, tickets for all productions may be purchased at www.tic.northwestern.edu or through the TIC Box Office at (847) 491-7282.

CONSTRUCTION ALERT

A three-year construction project under way on the southeast end of the Northwestern University campus has closed the Arts Circle Drive to traffic. Free parking for evening and weekend events remains available but the project will impact handicapped parking and patrons requiring special access to Evanston campus theaters. Visit www.tic.northwestern.edu/construction to learn more.

FEBRUARY 2013 MAINSTAGE PRODUCTIONS

“Nickel and Dimed,” 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb 1; 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 3; 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 4; 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 7; 10 a.m. (student matinee) and 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8; 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. Based on the best-selling book by author and activist Barbara Ehrenreich, and adapted for the stage by Joan Holden, “Nickel and Dimed” is a piercing examination of the effects of bottom-line and welfare reform on working-class America. It follows Ehrenreich as she travels across America documenting the struggles of low-wage workers and taking on jobs as a waitress, hotel maid, house cleaner, nursing home aid and store clerk. Jess McLeod will direct. Tickets are $25 for the general public; $22 for seniors 62 and older and Northwestern faculty, staff and educators; $10 for full-time students at door; or $5 for Northwestern students with advance purchase only.

“The Pajama Game,” 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15; 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. l6; 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17; 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21; 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22; 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23; 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24; 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28; 8 p.m. Friday, March 1; 8 p.m. Saturday, March 2; and 2 p.m. March 3, Ethel M. Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. Based on the novel “7 ½ Cents” by Richard Bissell with a score by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross, and directed by Marriott Theatre artistic associate Peter Sullivan, “The Pajama Game” centers on the Sleep-Tite Pajama Factory where the worker’s demands for a 7 ½-cent raise are being ignored. In the midst of a potential strike, Babe, the leader of the union grievance committee, and Sid, the handsome new factory superintendent fall in love. Can they set aside their differences in order to make their relationship work, or will being on opposite sides of the fence lead to their break-up? Tickets are $30 for the general public; $27 for seniors 62 and older, Northwestern faculty and staff and educators; and $10 for full-time students at door; or $5 for Northwestern students with advance purchase only.

SPECIAL TIC EVENT

“The Pajama Game” film screening, 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18, Ethel M. Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. This special one-night-only screening of the 1957 classic film, “The Pajama Game,” starring Doris Day, John Raitt and Carol Haney, is shown in conjunction with TIC’s staged version of the musical, running from Feb. 15 through March 3, at the Barber Theater. The screening is free to seven-play TIC subscribers with advance reservations. Single tickets for the screening are $10 each for the general public and $5 for Northwestern University students.

NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE BROADCAST

National Theatre Live broadcast of “The Magistrate” by Arthur Wing Pinero, 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 4, Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive, Northwestern University, Evanston campus. Pinero’s hit comedy stars Academy Award nominee and Tony Award-winner John Lithgow (“Dirty Rotten Scoundrels,” “Shrek” and “3rd Rock from the Sun”) in the title role of this Victorian farce. Other cast members include Olivier Award-winner Nancy Carroll (“After the Dance”) as his wife, Agatha. The production is directed by Olivier Award-winner Timothy Sheader (“Crazy for You” and “Into the Woods”).  With his louche air and a developed taste for smoking, gambling, alcohol and women, it’s hard to believe Cis Farrington is only 14. And that’s because he isn’t. His mother, Agatha, dropped five years from her true age -- and his -- when she married amiable magistrate Poskel. When her deception looks set to be revealed, a series of hilarious indignities and outrageous mishaps follow. Like the National Theatre’s smash-hit comedies, “She Stoops to Conquer,” “London Assurance” and “One Man, Two Guvnors,” “The Magistrate” is sure to have audiences around the world doubled up with laugher. Tickets are $20 for the general public; $10 for full-time students with IDs. Or save 20 percent with a National Theatre Live three-play subscription. For more information on subscriptions or discounts for groups of eight or more, contact the TIC Box Office at (847) 491-7282.

IMAGINE U

ImagineU programs are recommended for children aged 5 to 10 and their families. Each performance includes an opportunity for children to talk with cast members after the production. Audience members are encouraged to bring books to be signed by the performers after the show. Children in the audience will receive take-home programs filled with activities, art projects, fun facts and games.

EXTENDED RUN – Imagine U Family Series, “The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley,” 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9; 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10; 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16; and 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17; 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23; and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24, at the Mussetter-Struble Theater, Theatre and Interpretation Center at Northwestern University, 1949 Campus Drive, Evanston campus. This family musical is based on Jeff Brown’s children’s book “Flat Stanley.” Adapted for the stage by playwright and educator Timothy Allen McDonald, the production features lyrics by McDonald and Jonathan K. Waller and music by David Weinstein, Waller, McDonald and Stephen Gabriel. The musical follows Stanley, a little boy who has always dreamed of doing great things, but who resigns himself to playing with his little brother…until the morning he wakes up completely flattened. Stanley can now fold up into an envelope, hide in paintings, become a surfboard and travel wherever he wants. He is finally having the adventures of his dreams, but something is missing. “The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley” looks at what happens when our big dreams come true and we have no one to share them with. Tickets are $10 for adults; $8 for children and full-time students; and $5 for Northwestern students with advance purchase only or $10 at the door. The production will include workshops after all three 10 a.m. Saturday performances. Space is limited and advance registration is recommend. Register online at https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07e70kop280d025a81&oseq=&c=&ch=.

SECOND-YEAR MFA COLLABORATIONS SERIES

The Second-Year MFA Collaborations Series celebrates the shared vision of Northwestern’s second-year MFA design and directing students and provides TIC audiences with an opportunity to see the work of these up-and-coming artists.

“Machinal,” 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15; 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16; 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17; 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21; 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22; and 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23; Hal and Martha Hyer Wallis Theater, Theatre and Interpretation Center at Northwestern University, 1999 Campus Drive, Evanston campus. Inspired by the life and execution of Ruth Snyder, whose trial for killing her husband gripped the nation in 1927, “Machinal” is an expressionistic work about one young woman’s attempts to survive the confines of societal expectations. Written by American playwright and journalist Sophie Treadwell and directed by second-year MFA direction student Jessica Fisch, “Machinal” depicts the women’s journey from a loveless marriage to a clandestine affair, ultimately ending in the embrace of the electric chair. Tickets are $10 for the general public; $5 for Northwestern students on advance purchase only; $10 at the door; and free to TIC 2012-13 mainstage subscribers with advance reservation.

FEBRUARY 2013 STUDENT PRODUCTION

The 71st Annual Dolphin Show presents “My Fair Lady,” 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25; 8 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26; 2 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 27; 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1; and 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, Cahn Auditorium, 600 Emerson St., Northwestern University, Evanston campus. “My Fair Lady,” with book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Loewe, delighted audiences and critics alike with its original 1956 production and subsequent Academy Award-winning film adaptation. A re-imagining of George Bernard Shaw’s “Pygmalion,” the musical tells the story of Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle, who is the subject of a bet proposed to speech scientist Henry Higgins. Can she be transformed from a lowly street beggar to a true English lady? Tickets are $25 for the general public, $20 for senior citizens and Northwestern faculty/staff; and $10 for students with IDs and children. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.nudolphinshow.org or call (847) 467-4000.