‘Why is he wearing my robe?’: TLT’s ‘A Little Night Music’

Published 3:00 pm Friday, February 3, 2012

Rehearsals for Tryon Little Theater’s production of “A Little Night Music” are in full swing. Shown above are Desiree Armfeldt (played by Debbie Craig-Archer) with newly rekindled old flame Frederick Egerman (left, Ben Chumley) and jealous current lover Count Malcolm (right, Steve Porter). (photo by Lorin Browning)

The Spartanburg creative duo of Debbie Craig-Archer and Ben Chumley recently brought “Clue, the Musical” to the Tryon Little Theater (TLT) Workshop stage, under Craig-Archer’s direction and Chumley’s musical leadership. Now the two are back to join the current company of actors for this season’s full-scale musical: Stephen Sondheim’s “A Little Night Music.” Rounding out this love triangle is local TLT favorite Steve Porter, with his booming voice and bullish ways.
Director Richard Sharkey says of the cast, “I am really thrilled at the talent we’ve got in this show. ‘A Little Night Music’ is one of my favorite musicals and this production will be made better by the quality of performers we’ve been able to cast. Sondheim’s music is always difficult, but with Pam McNeil’s talent as the musical director, and with this cast, this is a TLT production that no one should miss.”
The story takes place in Sweden in the early 1900s, and the plot is full of twists and turns in the characters’ romantic lives. Here is a foretaste of one trio’s intertwining romances.
The glamorous Desiree is a touring actress when her former lover, Egerman, attends one of her performances. After the show, Egerman visits Desiree alone, and as he laments his marriage to his young and innocent (virginal, in fact) trophy wife, the two former lovers rekindle their romance.
The two are interrupted by a surprise visit from Desiree’s current lover, a married military man, Count Malcolm. Malcolm enters Desiree’s room and is stunned to find Egerman dressed in Malcolm’s own robe.
Malcolm, determined to investigate Desiree’s relationship with Egerman, recruits his own wife, Charlotte (played by Porter’s real-life wife, Tena Greene-Porter), to get information about Desiree from Egerman’s young wife.
Will Egerman end his chaste marriage in favor of his old love? Will Malcolm’s wife really spy on his lover for him? Will Desiree choose either of these men, or perhaps another?
The answers to these and many more questions will be revealed Feb. 17-19 and 24-26 at the Tryon Fine Arts Center. Show times are 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday evenings and 3 p.m. on Sundays.
To purchase tickets or for more information, contact TLT at 828-859-2466 or visit the box office at 516 S. Trade St., Tryon, Mon. – Sat., 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
– article submitted by Mimi Alexander

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