Blithe Spirit opens at 1st Stage

Apr 29, 2013
1st Stage Theatre

1st Stage, Tysons Corner's award winning professional theater, announces the May 24 opening of Blithe Spirit by playwright Noel Coward. The production at 1st Stage is directed by Lee Mikeska Gardner.

In the midst covert research for a forthcoming novel, writer Charles Condomine and his second wife, Ruth, host a seance with local medium Madame Arcati . The Condomines think it all bogus -- until Elvira, Charles' first wife, drops in from the afterlife. Perceptible only to Charles, she is intent upon disrupting his current marriage. With style, whimsy, and a touch of payback, all hell breaks loose in Charles' heretofore ordered world.

The 1st Stage production of "Blithe Spirit" features Steven Carpenter as Charles Condomine, Liz Mamana as his wife Ruth, and Dani Stoller as Charles' deceased wife, Elvira. Evan Crump plays the medium, Madame Arcati. The cast also includes Jenna Berk and Phil Hosford as the Bradmans and Maureen O'Rourke as Edith.

This production features a set and costume design by Steven Royal, lighting design by Brian Allard, sound design by Derek Knoderer, and prop design by Cindy Jacobs.

Noel Coward (1899-1973) said that Blithe Spirit "fell into my mind and on to the manuscript." He wrote the entire play in less than a week in 1941. Within six weeks, it was onstage and ready for a London audience. The spirited comedy was a welcome antidote to the war raging in Europe and England. The play opened in New York later that same year. More than 40 years passed before its first Broadway revival although Noel Coward directed a musical adaptation of the play, High Spirits, on Broadway in 1964. The most recent revival of the play in 2012 starred Angela Lansberry, Christine Ebersole and Rupert Everett.

Blithe Spirit will run May 24 through June 16 with show times as follows: Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 2 pm and 8 pm, and Sundays at 2pm and 7 pm. General admission is $25. Student tickets are $15. Group discounts are available. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling the 1st Stage box office at 703-854-1856. The run time is 2 hours 15 minutes. This show is appropriate for ages 12 and up.