Shaw Festival reveals 2015 playbill: Sweet Charity, Pygmalion, Light Up the Sky, Peter and the Starcatcher, You Never Can Tell, The Divine, The Lady from the Sea, Top Girls, The Twelve-Pound Look, The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism with a Key to the Scriptures (IHO) and The Next Whisky Bar – A Kurt Weill Cabaret

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Shaw Festival reveals 2015 playbill

– World, Canadian and Festival premieres highlight season –


Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON (August 2, 2014) — The Shaw Festival today announced the 2015 season playbill. The Shaw’s 54th season features 11 productions including the re-envisioning of two enduring Shaw comedies and two newly commissioned Canadian works.


The 2015 season will feature Sweet Charity, Pygmalion, Light Up the Sky, Peter and the Starcatcher, You Never Can Tell, The Divine, The Lady from the Sea, Top Girls, The Twelve-Pound Look, The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism with a Key to the Scriptures (IHO) and The Next Whisky Bar – A Kurt Weill Cabaret.


Commenting on the 2015 season, Artistic Director Jackie Maxwell said: “I am very excited by the mix of classic and contemporary plays in our 2015 season. Lauded Canadian playwrights Michel Marc Bouchard and Erin Shields will be presenting pieces from and about our original mandate, commissioned and developed here at The Shaw that will sit alongside new interpretations of work by Shaw, Moss Hart and J.M. Barrie, while Caryl Churchill and Tony Kushner will reflect the contemporary world through their own Shavian lens. Add a glorious musical from the ‘60s, a delirious family comedy and a newly conceived cabaret and it is clear that our plays will be speaking to each other across decades, styles and geographies providing a diverse continuum from Shaw to today.”




Sweet Charity
Music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Dorothy Fields & book by Neil Simon
American Musical Comedy (1966)
Directed by Morris Panych


Charity Valentine, the eternally optimistic dance hall hostess, her romantic trials and tribulations and New York in the Swinging Sixties take centre stage in The Shaw’s production of this Tony Award-winning musical.



Last produced at The Shaw in 2004
By Bernard Shaw
Anti-Romantic Comedy (1912)
Directed by Peter Hinton


Bernard Shaw’s hugely popular tale of a Cockney flower girl who is transformed into a “lady” is reimagined in a new production.



Light Up the Sky
By Moss Hart
American Comedy (1948)
Directed by Blair Williams


A mad-cap love letter to the theatre by one of Broadway’s most renowned playwrights.





Peter and the Starcatcher
A play by Rick Elice, based on the novel by Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson
Family Comedy (2009)

Tony Award-winning play

Directed by Jackie Maxwell


A humorous and adventurous prequel to the tale of Peter Pan and his arch nemesis Captain Hook. Rich in theatrical story-telling, a play for all ages with love and friendship at its heart.



You Never Can Tell
Last produced at The Shaw in 2005
By Bernard Shaw
Comedy (1897)
Directed by Jim Mezon


Comic errors and mistaken identities abound in Bernard Shaw’s most light‐hearted and whimsical play. A romantic comedy that still manages to examine the issues of social justice, marriage and freedom.



The Divine
World Premiere
By Michel Marc Bouchard, translated by Linda Gaboriau
Contemporary Canadian Drama (2015)
Directed by Jackie Maxwell


A new  play from a playwright with a poetic and political edge. Commissioned by the Shaw Festival and translated by Linda Gaboriau, The Divine uses Sarah Bernhardt’s controversial visit to Quebec City in 1908 to explore the tensions between Church, State and Theatre. This production is the first time a play by celebrated Quebec playwright Michel Marc Bouchard has premiered in English.





The Lady from the Sea
World Premiere
By Henrik Ibsen
Brand new version by Erin Shields
Drama (1888/2015)
Directed by Meg Roe


Commissioned by the Shaw Festival, Governor General award-winning playwright Erin Shields delivers a fresh and modern reworking of this Ibsen comedy. A moving story about a wife faced with a lasting choice that will ultimately change her fate and the future of her family.



Top Girls
By Caryl Churchill
Modern British Drama (1982)


A powerful, relevant time-bending work by a contemporary Shavian playwright that crosses centuries examining the role of women in society and the price that must be paid to get to the top.



The Twelve-Pound Look
Lunchtime/Canadian Premiere
By J.M. Barrie
Comedy (1914)
Directed by Lezlie Wade


A “grown-up” social satire full of wit and irony of an early 20th-century woman who trades money and status for freedom and liberation. From J.M. Barrie, the creator of Peter Pan.





The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism with

a Key to the Scriptures

Canadian Premiere
By Tony Kushner
American Drama (2011)
Directed by Eda Holmes


A funny and deeply moving rollercoaster ride through values, both familialand political, played out in a Brooklyn brownstone. A contemporary Shavian, and the most important voice in American theatre today, Tony Kushner’s sweeping family drama makes its Canadian premiere at the Shaw Festival – its natural home.



The Next Whisky Bar – A Kurt Weill Cabaret
World Premiere
Created by Paul Sportelli and Jay Turvey
Directed by Jay Turvey


For six nights only, the Shaw Festival will present a cabaret featuring a playlist of familiar songs by Kurt Weill, as well as some newly released by the Weill Estate. One of the most influential composers of the 20th century and a leading composer for the stage, Weill is best known for his collaborations with Berthold Brecht (Threepenny Opera, Happy End).



More details on casting and creative team to come.


2015 season ticket on-sale dates to note:

  • Governor’s Council and Premier Members: Saturday, November 1, 2014
  • Sustaining, Contributing and Business Members: Monday, November 3, 2014
  • Supporting Members: Thursday, November 6, 2014
  • Annual Members: Saturday, November 8, 2014
  • Special Starcatcher Family Package: Saturday, November 29, 2014
  • General Public: Wednesday, January 7, 2015
    • Fax, mail and online beginning Wednesday, January 7
    • By phone and in-person beginning Saturday, January 10.




About the Shaw Festival

The Shaw Festival is a theatre company inspired by the work of Bernard Shaw. We produce plays from and about his era and contemporary plays that share Shaw’s provocative exploration of society and celebration of humanity.



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