IRT Opens “Love Letters” December 15, 2009

Every woman has letters saved, somewhere, from a time when love blossomed and butterflies seemed to mate in their gut. It is a universally simplistic and sweet idea to engage a lover with letters. A.R. Gurney realized this when he wrote the play Love Letters. See a romance unfold in Love Letters on stage at the Indiana Repertory Theatre December 15, 2009 through January 17, 2010. This Indianapolis theatre is offering a special “Ladies Night Out” package connected to this and two other plays in the Indiana Repertory Theatre season. Bring your mom, your sister, your daughter or your girlfriends to experience the joy of love, in every stage.

A.R. Gurney wrote Love Letters in the late eighties and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in Drama for the work. The story is simple and meant to be staged simply. Two people, Melissa Gardner and Andrew Makepeace, exchange letters over the course of nearly fifty years. From the time they are seven until their middle age, Gardner and Makepeace share their lives through the art of letter writing. They hit on all the hopes and ambitions, dreams and disappointment, victories and defeats that life encounters over time. Through first love, marriage, divorce and old age, the two share a connection that is at the same time common place and special.

What is particularly interesting about Love Letters is the dichotomy of the two characters. Both from the same upper middle class background in the middle of the twentieth century, the play seems to question how two people from the same WASP-y upbringing can be so completely different. Melissa is a spoiled, rich, lavish woman, who struggles through her divorce, alcoholism, bi-polarism and suicidal tendencies. She sees the letters as a burden that she hates writing. At the same time, Andrew is squeaky clean young man destined for Yale, the navy, law, and the United States senate. He views the letters as one of the biggest loves in his life.

Past performances of Love Letters have been extremely simplistic and powerful all at once. The play is designed to be simply two actors sitting or standing on stage reading letters. With no physical interaction or dialogue and scant scenic elements to help further the plot of the play, the text relies on solid performances from talented actors. Because the time commitment for actors is so minimal (it is often suggested that they do not even memorize their parts) many famous and busy actors have taken a seat at the Love Letters table. Some of the big names to try their hand in the roles include Victor Garber, William Hurt, Christopher Reeve, George Segal, Christopher Walken, Treat Williams, Brian Dennehy, Mel Gibson, James Earl Jones, Elizabeth Taylor, Colleen Dewhurst, Lynn Redgrave, Stockard Channing, Jane Curtain, Carol Burnett, Sissy Spacek and Sigourney Weaver.

Experience the intimacy of this relationship as it unfolds on the Indiana Repertory Theatre’s upper stage. As part of the “Ladies Night Out” package, the Indiana Repertory Theatre has composed a series of girlfriend gab topics that relate to their production. The play hits on all the timeless questions such as, “Do opposites really attract?” and “How have the social and cultural ramifications of extra-marital affairs changed over the past fifty years?” Challenge yourself and your friends with a little food for thought, courtesy of the Indiana Repertory Theatre and available to all on their website.

For more information about ticket prices and show times for Love Letters, visit the Indiana Repertory Theatre’s official website. At the Indiana Repertory Theatre you really do live more when its live! Check out this great Indianapolis performing arts group located in the heart of Indianapolis downtown.

Before the show grab some dinner at any of these great Indianapolis restaurants. After the show, take your girls, and hit the town at any of these great Indianapolis bars (with discussion questions in hand of course!). Be sure to stay tuned to Fun City for all the latest on fun things to do in Indianapolis. We cover everything from Indianapolis arts to Indianapolis sports and more!

Love Letters
December 15 through January 17, 2010

Indiana Repertory Theatre
140 W Washington St
Indianapolis, IN 46204

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