The Fantasticks! & An Ideal Husband

Published: April 09, 2014 | Read Time: 3 minutes

Two stage classics perform together in repertory when Theatre Arts & Dance presents the beloved romantic musical The Fantasticks! and Oscar Wilde’s comedy of blackmail, scandal and, of course, marriage in An Ideal Husband together onstage in the Auditorium Theatre April 9-19.

A popular off-Broadway musical that opened in 1960 and ran for 42 years, now world renowned and performed in numerous languages, The Fantasticks! centers on two neighboring fathers, who trick their children, Matt and Luisa, into falling in love, by pretending to feud. The fathers hire traveling actors to stage a fake abduction but when their plan is uncovered by Matt and Luisa, the lovers reject the match and separate.

With music by Harvey Schmidt and book and lyrics by Tom Jones, and loosely based on Les Romanesques by Edmond Rostand, The Fantasticks! features such melodic songs as “Try to Remember” and “Soon It’s Going to Rain.”

Love's folly continues when Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband examines the themes of blackmail, political corruption and a man’s honor, all to marriage's backdrop. As fresh and as poignant today as when it premiered on the London stage in 1895, An Ideal Husband tells the story of a respected politician, Lord Robert Chiltern, who is threatened with exposure for past shady financial dealings by the devious Mrs. Cheveley. Unaware of her husband’s background, Lady Chiltern asserts to all that she has an “ideal husband.” However, her faith in her spouse is soon shaken when Mrs. Cheveley reveals the truth about Robert’s past.     

The Fantasticks! plays April 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18 at 7:30 p.m. and 19 at 2 p.m., while An Ideal Husband performs April 9, 11, 15, 17, and 19 at 7:30 p.m. and 12 at 2 p.m.   

SUU’s production of The Fantasticks! features Josh Hopkins as El Gallo, Carly Christensen as Luisa, Luke Johnson as Matt, Henry Ballesteros as Bellamy, Alex Greig as Hucklebee, David Crain as Henry, Kade Cox as Mortimer, Alec TerBerg as The Mute and Bradley Gowers as The Musician. Jess Phillips directs the musical which features choreography by Sceri Ivers and musical direction by Bradley Gowers. Alana Pichot is the scenic designer, Andrew Haueter is the costume designer, Andie Szekely is the lighting designer and Ryan Turpin is the sound engineer. Errin Gropp is the stage manager.

Directed by Richard Bugg, Professor of Theatre Arts, An Ideal Husband features Trevor Messenger as Lord Robert Chiltern, Jane M. Wright as Lady Chiltern, Madison Ford as Mrs. Cheveley, Christopher Whiteside as Lord Goring, Amber James as Mabel Chiltern, Kaitlyn Curry as Lady Markby, Frank Gasparro as Vicomte de Nanjac, Halie Merrill as Mrs. Marchmont, Blake Louthan as Lord Caversham, John G. Reber as Mason, Natalie C. Solomon as Lady Basildon, Ian J. Allred as Mr. Montford/Phipps and Parker Hess.  The production features scenic design by Emily Smith, costume design by Wendy A. Sanders, lighting design by Brian Jude Beacom and sound design by Colin Longhurst. Katie Hyer serves as assistant director and Shae Nicholas is the stage manager.    

Tickets are now on sale, at $10 for general admission; $8 for SUU faculty/staff, $5 for youth and free for SUU students with a valid ID. For tickets, call (435) 586-7872, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., or purchase at the Centrum Arena box office. Tickets may also be purchased online at This is a CPVA Flex Pass event.

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