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Asolo Rep Proudly Presents the Big-Hearted New Comedy Into the Breeches!

A love letter to the theater, Into the Breeches! opens Feb. 14.

Presented by Asolo Rep Theatre January 27, 2020

Asolo Rep proudly continues its winter repertory season with George Brant’s Into the Breeches! Helmed by Cleveland Play House Artistic Director Laura Kepley, this bright new comedy puts the women on the front lines. Into the Breeches! previews Feb. 12 and 13, opens February 14 and runs in rotating repertory through March 21 in the Mertz Theatre, located in the FSU Center for the Performing Arts.

“We can do it!” said Rosie the Riveter, and so say the courageous women in this vibrant new comedy, set right here in Sarasota.

It's 1942 in Sarasota, Florida and all of the men are off at war, including all of the leading players of one of the local theaters. But with an ambitious season of Shakespeare's Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2 and Henry V on the horizon (containing no less than 50 parts for men), how could the show possibly go on? Enter a group of wildly determined and passionate—albeit inexperienced—women who are determined to keep the theater's doors open. This surprisingly modern and moving new play celebrates the singular way that art and community reveal our boldest selves even in the darkest times.

“Into the Breeches! is one of those rare comedies that infuses humor with a profound, provocative message,” says Asolo Rep Producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards. “We are in the midst of one of the greatest gender revolutions of all time, and Into the Breeches! inventively explores the evolving roles of women and men through the lens of World War II.

"I have had the great good fortune to be with this play since its inception," says Laura Kepley. "It has been one of the most gratifying experiences of my career to watch how artists and audiences respond to it. What continues to surprise me is how incredibly moving the play is. I’ve known from the beginning that it is an extremely funny piece, but I was not prepared for how deeply this comedy would touch audience’s hearts. This play is a love letter to the theater and a reminder to all of us that our art form has the power to transform lives." 

Into the Breeches! had its world premiere at Trinity Rep in 2018. Since then it has played at the Utah Shakespeare Festival, Northlight Theatre, Cleveland Playhouse and more. Playwright George Brant adapts the play to be set in the city in which it is playing to add local resonance.

The cast features Asolo Rep favorites Matt DeCaro (Ellsworth Snow) and Peggy Roeder (Winifred Snow). It also features Grant Chapman (Stuart Lasker), Diana Coates (Ida Green), Madeline Maby (Maggie Dalton) and Tina Stafford (Celeste Fielding), who are new to Asolo Rep's stage this season. FSU Asolo Conservatory students Jillian Cicalese (June Bennet) and Amber McNew (Grace Richards) round out the company. 

Asolo Rep’s winter repertory season also includes Murder on the Orient Express, directed by Peter Amster, playing through March 21, and The Lifespan of a Fact, a recent Broadway hit about the high-stakes world of publishing, playing through March 21. Also coming up, The Great Leap in the Cook Theatre March 18 – April 11, the world premiere musical Knoxville, April 3-25, and another new musical, Hood, A Robin Hood Musical Adventure, May 7-31. In June, Asolo Rep brings its season to a close with Snow White in an innovative new production great for the entire family,­­ June 11-28.

For tickets and more information, visit www.asolorep.org