Baltimore—October 27, 2016. Center Stage is pleased to announce the cast and artistic team for Les Liaisons Dangereuses, its first production of the 2016/17 Season.
Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Dangerous Liaisons) introduces two French aristocrats, the Marquise de Merteuil and her ex-lover, the Vicomte de Valmont, who challenge each other to seduce unsuspecting innocents in this story of revenge, debauchery and hidden motives. Set just before the French Revolution, Les Liaisons Dangereuses is a glimpse into the lives of beautiful people poised to denigrate and control everyone around them, including each other. But when one of them actually falls in love, the real betrayals unfold.
The role of the Marquise de Merteuil will be played by award-winning actress Suzzanne Douglas. Douglas is known for her roles in the WB television show The Parent ‘Hood, the Lifetime biopic Whitney, and the films How Stella Got Her Groove Back, The Inkwell, Jason’s Lyric and School of Rock. Her theater credits include performances on Broadway in The Tap Dance Kid, It’s a Grand Night for Singing and The Threepenny Opera.
The Vicomte de Valmont will be played by Brent Harris, who has performed in the National Tour of The Screwtape Letters and the National Tour of Disney’s The Lion King. He also spent three years performing at Oregon Shakespeare Festival and three years at Denver Center for the Performing Arts.
The cast includes Suzzanne Douglas* (La Marquise de Merteuil), Brent Harris* (Le Vicomte de Valmont), Gillian Williams* (La Présidente de Tourvel), Noelle Franco* (Cécile Volanges), Elizabeth Shepherd* (Madame de Rosemonde), Paul Deo Jr.* (Le Chevalier Danceny), Georgia Warner* (Émilie), Carine Montbertrand* (Madame de Volanges), Aaron Bartz* (Azolan), Jeff Keogh (Ensemble), Chloe Mikala (Ensemble), Brett Messiora (Ensemble) and Ricardo S. Blagrove (Ensemble).
The play, by Christopher Hampton based on the novel by Choderlos de Laclos, will be directed by Center Stage Associate Artistic Director Hana S. Sharif.
“This is a sleek, sexy show,” said Sharif. “Although the setting is turn of the 18th century, Les Liaisons Dangereuses explores themes that are still incredibly relevant today. I am intrigued by the dynamics of power, gender, manipulation and the contrast between the public identity and the private self. One hopes this production will excite, challenge and entertain our audiences in a deliciously stimulating way. It is thrilling to delve into this world with such an incredibly talented creative team and a tour de force company of actors led by Suzzanne Douglas and Brent Harris.”
The artistic team includes Michael Carnahan (scenic designer), Fabio Toblini (costume designer), Matthew Richards (lighting designer), Nathan A. Roberts and Charles Coes (original music and sound design), Gavin Witt (dramaturg), Rick Sordelet (fight director), Leigh Wilson Smiley (voice and speech coach), Brandon Rashad Butts (assistant director), Megan Smith* (stage manager), Jeremy Phillips* (assistant stage manager) and Pat McCorkle, McCorkle Casting, Ltd. (casting).
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association
Les Liaisons Dangereuses opens Friday, Dec. 2, with previews Nov. 26 to Dec. 1, and closes Friday, Dec. 23. For more information, visit www.centerstage.org or call the box office at 410.332.0033. Press night is Friday, Dec. 2.
Les Liaisons Dangereuses will be held in Center Stage’s Calvert Street building, which is still under construction through Dec. 2016. Please note there will be no food or drink service, no lobby, and limited Box Office services. The theater is currently undergoing a $28 million renovation to include a redesigned 400-seat Head Theater, a new lobby and entrance plaza, a new 99-seat space, and a dedicated education studio by Baltimore architecture firm Cho Benn Holback + Associates and U.K.-based theater designers Charcoalblue.
Les Liaisons Dangereuses is made possible by DLA Piper and KPMG. The Les Liaisons Dangereuses media partner is Maryland Public Television. Center Stage is supported by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC), an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. An agency of the Department of Business and Economic Development, the MSAC provides financial support and technical assistance to nonprofit organizations, units of government, colleges and universities for arts activities. Funding for the MSAC is also provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency, and the Baltimore County Commission on Arts and Sciences. Center Stage’s 2016/17 Season is made possible by The Shubert Foundation and the Baltimore County Commission on Arts and Sciences.
About Center Stage
Center Stage is a professional, nonprofit institution committed to entertaining, engaging, and enriching audiences through bold, innovative and thought-provoking classical and contemporary theater.
Named the State Theater of Maryland in 1978, Center Stage has steadily grown as a leader in the national regional theater scene. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Kwame Kwei-Armah OBE and Managing Director Michael Ross, Center Stage is committed to creating and presenting a diverse array of world premieres and exhilarating interpretations of established works.
Center Stage believes in access for all—creating a welcoming environment for everyone who enters its theater doors and, at the same time, striving to meet audiences where they are. In addition to our Mainstage, Off Center and Family Series productions in the historic Mount Vernon neighborhood, Center Stage ignites conversations among a global audience through our digital initiatives, which explore how technology and the arts intersect. The theater also nurtures the next generation of artists and theater-goers through the Young Playwrights Festival, Student Matinee Series and many other educational programs for students, families and professionals.