This show runs approximately 2 hours, including intermission.
THE HOUSE OPENS 45 MINUTES BEFORE CURTAIN. You may want to arrive early to enjoy the exhibit in our art gallery with refreshments ranging from coffee and cookies to beer and wine.
POST-SHOW DISCUSSION: Join the company of Jeeves Takes a Bow for a post-show discussion following the Sunday matinee on July 7th.
AUDIO-DESCRIPTION: The Sunday, July 21st performance will be audio-described, based on reservations. Click here for a description of this and other access services at TRP.
About the Show
(company members are listed at the bottom, following the interview with the director)
Bertie Wooster is the epitome of the upper-class twit: charming, well turned out, but maddeningly ill-suited for any endeavor requiring thought. Fortunately, he can always rely on his faithful, stoic manservant Jeeves to get him out of a jam.
In this third installment of her hilarious Britcom series inspired by the stories of P.G. Wodehouse, Margaret Raether sends the hopelessly inept Bertie and his indispensable Jeeves across the pond to America.
At his go-round directing Jeeves in the round, director DANN PETERSON is happy to be back in the company of these delightfully ditsy characters..
Interview with the Director
Q. This is TRP’s third production of the Jeeves series, which have proved to be an audience favorite. What do audiences respond to in these comedies?
PETERSON: Audiences do seem to relish these characters. I think that part of their appeal is in the language of the characters: the inept handling of the language by Bertie, and the superior knowledge and skill of usage by Jeeves. Another appeal is the complication of the situations in which Bertie and his friends find themselves, and the clever ways in which Jeeves comes to the rescue. I believe the audiences respond to the lovability of the main characters and their unique relationship. Jeeves’ superior intellect saves the day.
Q. What’s the conceit and setting of this particular play? What sticky wicket does Bertie get himself into?
PETERSON: This play is set in New York during the summer of 1932, in a luxurious leased apartment. Of course there is a former school mate of Bertie’s who has come to America for a diplomatic position, but the lure of New York and a kewpie doll cause him to abandon that line of work and take up the stage under an assumed name — that of Bertie Wooster. So Bertie is forced to take the name of his friend Binky. This leads to confusion when an old acquaintance of Bertie’s, Vivienne Duckworth, arrives. Mistaken identities and a double engagement lead to further confusion until Jeeves comes up with a plan. There’s a gangster and bootleg gin mixed into the story too.
Q. Not only do audiences keep coming back to these characters — so do some of the actors! Particularly in the case of the actors playing Jeeves and Bertie, what do you think keeps them coming back for more?
PETERSON: I think it is the lure of the well-drawn characters and the unique relationship of a rich young man and valet. The action also appeals to actors.
Q. How does Raether keep this material fresh? What’s different this time around?
PETERSON: The playwright keeps the language very close to Wodehouse’s, and she has a clever way of pulling situations from a couple of different tales and weaving them together. Actually, when we are rehearsing, we find a lot of the language or ideas that are reflective of some language and ideas in the previous two plays. The fact that this story takes place in New York introduces us to some American characters who don’t always understand the comments or relationship of the other characters.
Q. What’s the biggest challenge of mounting this production?
PETERSON: There is a scene near the end of the play which is a rehearsal for a play-within-a-play which has a western setting, so actors are working with English accents trying to perform with western or French accents. There is also a musical number in this show.
Jeeves: John Adler
Bertram Wooster: Aaron Henry
Nigel Bingham-Binkersteth: Grant Hooyer
Miss Ruby Leroy: Hannah Steblay
“Knuckles” McCan: David Tufford
Vivienne Duckworth: Laura Weiher
ARTISTIC & PRODUCTION STAFF
Director: Dann Peterson
Assistant Director/Dramaturg: David Rinzema
Set/Costume Designer: John A. Woskoff
Lighting Designer: Mark Kieffer
Prop Designer: Shannon Tufford
Sound Designer: Abe Gabor
Stage Manager: Malka Key
Assistant Stage Manager: Charlie Anderson
Assistant Lighting Designer: Christopher Gehrke