Additional reporting by Madison Mento ’21
The Department of Drama and Dance presents Noël Coward’s sophisticated comedy of manners Private Lives at the Schaeffer Black Box Theater, October 4-13. The play, directed by Professor Christopher Dippel, is the first of Hofstra’s 2019-2020 performance season.
First performed in 1930, this play follows the turbulent relationship of Elyot (Teddy Drummond ‘20) and Amanda (Anna Rudegeair ‘20), who loved each other fiercely and fought each other savagely during their short, rocky marriage. Five years after their divorce, while honeymooning with new spouses (played by Alyssa Palmigiano ‘20 and Raymond Soeun ‘20), they discover that they are staying at the same hotel – in adjacent rooms! When they meet again, sparks fly, but are they rekindling an old flame, or igniting a powder keg?
Dippel praised his actors and the ease with which they are working together. “It’s a great cast. I have worked with nearly everyone before, either in class or in productions. They’ve developed such a comfort with each other so quickly that it is truly remarkable – and essential as we’ve only had four weeks to get the play into shape. Everyone has a great sense of humor and that makes coming to work a blast.”
“I feel incredibly lucky to work on a show like Private Lives,” said Soeun, who plays Victor. “My favorite part of the play takes place during Act III when the characters’ lives become crazy. All of them fall apart and let loose everything they’ve been holding in.”
Show times for Private Lives are Friday, October 4 and October 11, at 8 p.m.; Saturday, October 5 and 12, at 8 p.m.; Sunday, October 6 and 13, at 2 p.m.; and Thursday, October 10, at 8 p.m.
The Joan and Donald Schaeffer Black Box Theater is located at Joseph G. Shapiro Family Hall, South Campus (formerly the New Academic Building).
Tickets to each performance are $10, $8 senior citizen. Members of the Hofstra community receive two free tickets upon presentation of a current HofstraCard.
For tickets and information call the Hofstra Box Office at 516-463-6644, or purchase tickets online. If seats are still available on the day of performance, tickets will be sold at the door beginning 90 minutes prior to showtime. (Free tickets for members of the Hofstra community must be picked up at the Box Office. They are not available online.)