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Players announces 2013 season

At its annual meeting on Feb. 10, the Peterborough Players announced the lineup of plays for its 80th anniversary season this summer. The theater also announced the election of new board members and the winner of the Flanders Award for best equity actor of the 2012 season.

A 2008 bequest from Charles Flanders created an endowment, the proceeds of which are used to award the best performance by an equity actor each season. The winner is voted on by the Board of Trustees. The 2012 winner is Ian Peakes, who appeared last season in “The 39 Steps” and “The Admirable Crichton.”

Seven new members of the Board of Trustees were elected: Linda Caracappa of Sharon, Cy Gregg of Peterborough, Leslie Kenney of Peterborough, Rob Koch of Peterborough, Fred Leventhal of Dublin, Andrew Manns of Peterborough and Michael Redmond of Jaffrey. The trustees whose terms expired were thanked for their service, including Peterborough residents Jim Borsari (outgoing president), Jack Burnett, Joyce Gregg, Muriel Henault and Barbara Miller, and Wilton resident Jan Brown.

The 2013 season of main stage plays are as follows:

“Say Goodnight Gracie,” which will run June 26 to July 7. It is a one-man tour de force by Rupert Holmes.

George Burns is now miraculously alive and kicking in a multimedia presentation. We discover George in limbo between this world and the next, unable to join his beloved wife and partner, Gracie Allen, until he gives the command performance of his lifetime for God. Joel Rooks, who starred in the show’s national tour and off-Broadway revival, stars in this performance.

“2 Pianos 4 Hands” will run July 10 to 21. This is a play with music by Ted Dykstra and Richard Greenblatt.

As children, Ted and Richard don’t have much in common, except for the shared desire to become classical pianists. But does either of them have what it takes? “2 Pianos 4 Hands” follows the journey of two boys into adulthood, their musical aspirations gleaming like the grand pianos that they play. Tom Frey returns to star in this hit from the 2010 season, which tops the list of most-requested revivals.

“Seagull” runs July 24 to Aug. 4. Anton Chekhov’s classic will appear in a new version by Gus Kaikkonen.

In Chekhov’s masterwork “Seagull,” characters reveal the passion and pathos of everyday life. When famed actress Irina Arkadina visits her family with her lover Trigorin in tow, they become ensnared in a tangle of romance, intrigue and unrequited love.

“Laughing Stock” runs Aug. 7 to 18. This is a backstage farce by Charles Morey, former Players artistic director.

A comedy and affectionate look into the world of the theater. When The Playhouse, a rustic New England summer theater, schedules a repertory season of “Dracula,” “Hamlet” and “Charley’s Aunt,” comic mayhem ensues. This play follows the well-intentioned but over-matched company from outrageous auditions to ego-driven rehearsals through opening nights gone disastrously awry to the elation of a great play well told and the comic and nostalgic season close. Chuck Morey, who directed last season’s “The 39 Steps,” returns to direct this hit from the 2004 season.

“Absurd Person Singular,” a comedy by Sir Alan Ayckbourn, will be staged Aug. 21 to Sept. 1.

The party may be in the living room, but the action and comedy is in the kitchen. Three couples, three kitchens, three successive Christmas Eves. Relationships change, fortunes rise (and fall, and rise again), and the social order gets all mixed up in this play by the master of British comedy, last seen at the Players in 1977.

The six play of the season will run Sept. 4 to 15, and has yet to be announced. The Players is unable to announce this classic romantic comedy at this time because it is still playing in New York.

“Tea for Three” runs Sept. 18 to 22. This is a one-woman show by Eric H. Weinberger.

“Tea for Three” humanizes the political scene in a behind-the-scenes look at Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon and Betty Ford. Emmy Award–winning actress Elaine Bromka, with over 30 years of experience in film, television, Broadway and Off-Broadway, starred as eight first ladies opposite Rich Little in the PBS show “The Presidents.” Intrigued by their stories, she went on with playwright Eric H. Weinberger to create this one-woman show.

The Second Company plays for children and their families are:

“Snow White” will be staged on the mornings of June 29, July 5, 6, 12, 13, 17, 19, 20, 26 and 27. This play by Marjorie Sokoloff is based on the beloved classic tale.

An audience favorite in 2002, this Snow White puts the familiar cast of characters in a whole new light.

“Scapino!” will be staged at 2 p.m. Aug. 24, 27, 30, 31; and at 7 p.m. on Aug. 26. This play by Frank Dunlop and Jim Dale is based on Molière’s play “Les Fourberies de Scapin” (“The Pranks of Scapin”). It was last at the Players in 1982. Molière wrote his play in 1671; this production brings it alive for today’s audiences.

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