Florida Rep opens its 2018–2019 Season with a comedy about the life of Dr. Ruth Westheimer

Florida Rep opens its 2018–2019 Season with a comedy about the life of Dr. Ruth Westheimer

FORT MYERS, FL – Florida Repertory Theatre is pleased to announce the opening of “Becoming Dr. Ruth,” a moving and humorous new biographical comedy to kick off its 2018-2019 Season. Playing September 21 to October 21 in the ArtStage Studio Theatre, the run includes four nearly sold out preview performances September 18-20 and stars Broadway and regional theatre veteran, Susan Greenhill, and welcomes back director and longtime Florida Rep ensemble member, Chris Clavelli.

“I am delighted to kick off Florida Rep’s 21st season with such a touching and universal story of perseverance and hope,” said Interim Artistic Director, Jason Parrish.”Dr. Ruth’s unbelievable life story is a profile in courage, and it is in capable hands with  Chris Clavelli and Susan Greenhill. ‘Becoming Dr. Ruth’ is moving, incredibly funny, and a fascinating look at a life well-lived, and full of Dr. Ruth’s signature personality and charm.”

“Becoming Dr. Ruth” by Mark St. Germain is harrowing true story of how a little girl fled the Nazis to become one of the most empowering voices of the 20th century. Ensemble member Chris Clavelli directs the production with Susan Greenhill in the iconic title role. Greenhill is no stranger to the role, having appeared as Dr. Ruth at Studio Theatre in Sarasota and the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach. Playwright Mark St. Germain’s other work includes past Florida Rep hits, “Best of Enemies,” last season’s world premiere, “George Washington’s Teeth,” and the first play to be performed in the new ArtStage Studio Theatre, “Camping with Henry and Tom.”

Chris Clavelli returns to direct this production after his work on last year’s season opener, “Outside Mullingar” and a recent production at Sarasota’s newest professional company, Dog Days Theatre. Clavelli leads set designer Bert Scott (“Over the River and Through the Woods”), costume designer Jacqueline Loy (Florida Rep debut), lighting and projection designer Rob Siler (“Disgraced”), sound designer Katie Lowe, and ensemble stage manager Amy Massari (“George Washington’s Teeth”).

“Becoming Dr. Ruth kicks off a 9-show season that showcases Florida Rep’s signature ensemble of artists in a variety of roles and projects and introduces a record number of Broadway and regional theatre veterans making their Florida Rep debuts.

Florida Rep’s third decade of  nationally-recognized, professional theatre in the Fort Myers River District includes “Steel Magnolias” by Robert Harling, the regional premiere of a heart-stopping psychological thriller, “Damascus,” a world premiere adaptation of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” “Tenderly,” a salute to Rosemary Clooney, August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama, “Fences,” the Noël Coward farce, “Hay Fever,” Broadway’s rock ‘n’ roll sensation, “Million Dollar Quartet,” and one of the most produced new comedies of the last year, “Native Gardens” by Karen Zacarías.

Tickets are available online at www.FloridaRep.organd through the box office at 239-332-4488. Tickets are at $55 and $49 for regular performances, and $35 and $29 for previews. Subscriptions start as low as $150 for six plays and offer the best seats and the most significant savings, and are available through the box office. Box office hours are Monday through Friday, 10 AM – 5 PM. New this season, Florida Rep’s parking lot will open 2 hours before each performance and offers guests limited free parking across the street from the Arcade Theatre.

Florida Repertory Theatre performs in the Historic Arcade Theatre and the ArtStage Studio Theatre on Bay St. between Jackson & Hendry with limited free parking in the Fort Myers River District. Visit Florida Rep online at FloridaRep.org, and by following the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.