A tale of great humor, a French lady and her sour suitor

(Photo courtesy Greenbrier Valley Theatre)
Jackie Schram, who will portray Célimène in GVT’s upcoming production of The School for Lies

Greenbrier Valley Theatre (GVT), the state professional theatre of West Virginia, is proud to present the cheeky comedy The School for Lies. This farce set in France will run July 13 and 14, July 18-20 and July 25-28 at 7:30 p.m., and a matinee performance on July 28 at 2:30 p.m.

Tickets are $30 for general adult admission, $27 for seniors (60+) and $20 for children/students. For more information, call the GVT Box Office at 304-645-3838 or visit www.gvtheatre.org.

A saucy rom-com set in 1666 France, this is a hilarious retelling of Molière’s Le Misanthrope, written entirely in rhyme. The widow Célimène is the most desired and adored woman in all of France. When she meets the solemn and cynical Frank she will remember what it means to love. This production is rated R for strong language and situations, and innuendos.

When one hears the phrase “written entirely in rhyme” one might immediately think of long-dead playwrights with dark and tragic tales. David Ives’ adaptation of Molière’s famous farce could not be more different. Written with a nod to modern-day humor, it is a delight to watch the actors match each other’s jokes verse for verse.

Jackie Schram, who stars as the widow Célimène, has experience with linguistically challenging roles, and thinks this show is a blast to work on.

“The rhythm of it is so much fun, and the balance between the 1666 mannerisms and the contemporary thought is just too much fun,” Schram said.

(Photo courtesy Greenbrier Valley Theatre)
Joseph Murray, who will portray Frank in GVT’s upcoming production of The School for Lies

The talented actor, who holds an MFA in Acting from The New School for Drama in New York, has been seen in such shows as The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, The Lost Colony and Romeo and Juliet. She also enjoys the opportunity to fill the big dresses and tall wigs; the fashion at the time. You can learn more about her on Facebook: facebook.com/tallgirlschram or Instagram: @tallgirlschram.

Matching Célimène’s wit at every turn is Frank, played by returning actor Joseph Murray. Murray has been seen on GVT’s stage in The Underpants, The Cherry Orchard, The Crucible and The Glass Menagerie, alongside Producing Artistic Director Cathey Sawyer, as well as quite a few more. Murray loves the story and thinks there is a deeper meaning brought forth by all the cast members.

“Their facility with extremely complex language has set the bar very high in rehearsal, likely the most highly skilled cast I have ever worked with,” the actor said.

The program is presented with financial assistance from the WV Division of Culture & History, and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the WV Commission on the Arts.

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