Local audiences are in for a treat with New Theatre's upcoming production of The Front Page, a fast-paced comedic whirlwind that takes us back to the roaring twenties and the high-pressure world of Chicago journalism.  Written by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur in 1928, the play offers a hilarious and timeless satire on the relentless pursuit of the big story, the ethical tightropes that reporters walk, and the captivating chaos of a bustling newsroom.

Director Nicholas Papademetriou isn't concerned that the play's pre-internet setting might feel dated. "Though mobile phones and laptops have replaced notepads and typewriters, and the internet has changed the way news is reported," he explains, "the essence of the newshound is the same."  Papademetriou highlights that the play's core themes of ambition, journalistic integrity, and the ever-present dance with manipulation by the media resonate just as strongly today.

For this production, Papademetriou has crafted an adaptation that streamlines the plot for a modern audience while preserving the play's sharp wit. He's also taken the liberty of refreshing the gags and even switching up some character genders, ensuring the humour lands with a contemporary audience.  The result promises to be a production that's both side-splittingly funny and thought-provoking, reminding us of the power and limitations of the press in a way that feels fresh and relevant.

A hallmark of this production is its impressive cast. With 18 actors taking the stage, The Front Page boasts a vibrant ensemble that brings the frenetic energy of a deadline-driven newsroom to life. Familiar faces like David Allsopp, Alison Chambers, and Megan Heferen are joined by a talented group of performers ready to bring Hecht and MacArthur's characters to life.

Behind the scenes, a team of experienced creatives ensurie a top-notch production.  Costume designer Paris Burrows promises to transport audiences to the sartorial styles of the late 1920s, while lighting and sound designer Michael Schell will recreate the frenetic buzz of a busy newsroom. Dialect coach Nick Curnow is on board to ensure the cast flawlessly delivers the play's sharp dialogue, adding another layer of authenticity to the production. Rounding out the team is assistant director Kathy Petrakis and stage manager Rosane McNamara, who will ensure the smooth running of this ambitious production.

The Front Page is more than just a historical comedy. It's a play that captures the essence of journalism, a profession that thrives on uncovering the truth but constantly grapples with its own ethical dilemmas.  The play's humour may be rooted in a bygone era, but its core themes remain strikingly relevant.  Whether you're a history buff, a media enthusiast, or simply enjoy a good laugh, New Theatre's production of The Front Page promises to be a thoroughly entertaining and thought-provoking experience.  See if you can keep up with the relentless pursuit of the next big story.

23 April - 18 May 2024

Preview Tue 23 April 7:30pm
Opening Night Wed 24 April 7:30pm
Thu - Sat 7:30pm, Sun 2pm
Sat 18 May 2pm only

Full $37
Concessions, Groups (6+) $32
Thrifty Thursdays $25

Preview $20



(Image: © Birdlandia Art/Shutterstock)