Menu

Close

ManAndSuper_wide.jpg
ManAndSuper_wide.jpg

Man and Superman

Learn more:

This event has passed

A hilarious cocktail of Victorian farce and Nietzschean philosophy, Man and Superman inverts the myth of Don Juan to portray “the tragi-comic love chase of the man by the woman.” John Tanner, an earnest young revolutionary, flees to the Sierra Nevada when he discovers that his beautiful ward has plans to marry him. Captured by a band of international brigands, Tanner eventually falls asleep, and dreams up to a sparkling Shavian debate between Don Juan, the Devil, and a rather talkative statue. With a fairy tale ending and a cast fresh from hell, Man and Superman is one of Shaw’s finest and most devilishly witty comedies.

SYNOPSIS

John Tanner, a young, radical writer, is named along with Roebuck Ramsden, an antideluvian conservative, to be the guardian of the attractive and wealthy Ann Whitefield. When Tanner realizes that Ann loves him, he orders his chauffeur Straker to drive to Spain to avoid marrying her. But Ann follows in hot pursuit, and, while in the Sierra Nevada, Tanner and Straker encounter a group of rebels headed by an appealing Mephistophelean outlaw named Mendoza. In the mountains, Tanner has a dream (the “Don Juan in Hell” sequence). In his dream John becomes Don Juan, Ann, his former love, Doña Ana, and Mendoza, the devil. Back in the real world, Ann catches up to the entourage, traps John into marriage, and the audience is left to assume that the couple’s perfect match will produce superior children, which was the Life Force’s master plan all along.

Credits

Creative team

by

George Bernard Shaw

Directed by

David Wheeler

Directed by

David Wheeler

On Broadway, he directed Richard III with Al Pacino, and The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel, for which Mr. Pacino won the Tony Award for Best Actor. Regional theatres include the Guthrie Theatre, Alley Theatre, Paper Mill Playhouse, Berkeley Rep, Arizona Theatre Company, Pittsburgh Playhouse, and the Charles de Rochefort Theatre in Paris, where he directed the French premiere of Edward Albee's The Zoo Story.

As the artistic director of the Theatre Company of Boston (TCB) from 1963 to 75, Mr. Wheeler directed over eighty productions.  Among these were ten by Pinter, seven by Brecht, five by Albee, nine by Beckett, two by O'Neill, and numerous works by new writers such as Ed Bullins, Jeffrey Bush, John Hawkes, Adrienne Kennedy, and Sam Shepard.  Through these productions and others, he helped to launch the careers of then-unknown actors including Paul Benedict, Larry Bryggman, John Cazale, Stockard Channing, Blythe Danner, Robert DeNiro, Robert Duvall, Hector Elizondo, Spalding Gray, Paul Guilfoyle, Dustin Hoffman, Al Pacino, Jon Voight, Ralph Waite, and James Woods. His film The Local Stigmatic (with Mr. Pacino)—adapted from the play by Heathcote Williams—was presented at the Montreal Film Festival and screened at the Whitney Museum and the MOMA. It will be released in 2006.

Mr. Wheeler's honors include the Elliot Norton Award for his work on Misalliance, the St. Botolph Club Foundation's Award for Distinction in the Performing Arts, and the Rodgers and Hammerstein Award. He has taught and directed at Harvard University, Boston University, MIT, Brandeis, Barnard, Colorado College, and Circle-in-the-Square. He has directed student productions at U.N.C. Chapel Hill, U.C. Irvine and Long Beach, and Évora, Portugal. After receiving his masters at Harvard, Mr. Wheeler trained with José Quintero in New York during the great "O'Neill years" of the 1950's.

View full biography

Set design by

Christine Jones

Set design by

Christine Jones

Christine Jones, the set designer for Nocturne, previously designed The Cripple of Inishmaan, The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew, Man and Superman, When the World Was Green (A Chef's Fable), Hot 'n' Throbbing, Picasso at the Lapin Agile, Silence, Cunning, Exile, and The L.A. Plays for the American Repertory Theater. Her other credits include The Green Bird (for which she received Drama Desk and Outer Critics' Circle Award nominations) for the New Victory Theatre in New York, Texts for Nothing and Richard II for the New York Shakespeare Festival, Tartuffe and Richard III for Hartford Stage, and sets and costumes for Iolanthe at Glimmerglass Opera.

View full biography

Costume design by

Catherine Zuber

Costume design by

Catherine Zuber

Catherine Zuber has created the costumes for Richard II, The Doctor's Dilemma, and over forty other A.R.T. productions including Three Farces and a Funeral, Antigone, Loot, The Idiots Karamazov, Ivanov, Phaedra, The Merchant of Venice, Valparaiso, The Imaginary Invalid, The Taming of the Shrew, Peter Pan and Wendy, The Bacchae, Man and Superman, The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari, Woyzeck, The Wild Duck, The Naked Eye, Long Day's Journey Into Night, Tartuffe, Ubu Rock, Waiting for Godot, The Oresteia, Shlemiel the First, Picasso at the Lapin Agile, A Touch of the Poet, What the Butler Saw, The Cherry Orchard, and Orphée. Ms. Zuber's credits include work at Lincoln Center, The Joseph Papp Public Theater, Goodman Theatre, The Guthrie Theater, Mark Taper Forum, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Hartford Stage Company, La Jolla Playhouse, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Houston Grand Opera, and Glimmerglass Opera, among others. Her Broadway credits include The Triumph of Love (Connecticut Critics Circle Award and Drama Desk nomination), Ivanov (Drama Desk nomination), The Sound of Music, Twelfth Night, The Red Shoes, London Assurance, The Rose Tattoo, and Philadelphia Here I Come. Ms. Zuber was the recipient of the 1997 Obie Award for sustained achievement in design. She is the costume designer for La Fête des Vignerons de 1999, the massive Festival of the Winegrowers in Vevey, Switzerland.

View full biography

Lighting design by

John Ambrosone

Lighting design by

John Ambrosone

Lighting Designer John Ambrosone has designed over thirty productions for the American Repertory Theater, including Lysistrata, Absolution, Marat/Sade, Othello, Animals and Plants, Mother Courage (2001 Elliot Norton Design Award), The Doctor's Dilemma, Three Farces and a Funeral, Nocturne, IvanovThe Cripple of Inishmaan, The King Stag, Boston Marriage, Charlie in the House of Rue, Valparaiso, The Marriage of Bette and Boo, How I Learned to Drive, Nobody Dies on Friday, Man and Superman, The Old Neighborhood, When the World Was Green (A Chef's Fable), Alice in Bed, Slaughter City, and Buried Child. On Broadway he designed The Old Neighborhood. Work in resident theaters includes the Alley Theatre, Long Wharf Theatre, the Coconut Grove Playhouse, Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), Walnut Street Theatre, Trinity Repertory Company, and Arena Stage. Mr. Ambrosone also has designed in Singapore, Moscow, Japan, Brazil, Taiwan, Mexico, Germany, and France.

View full biography

Sound design by

David Remedios

Sound design by

David Remedios

Sound designs by David Remedios have been heard in Sexual Perversity in Chicago/The Duck Variations, Romance, Trojan Barbie, Endgame, The Seagull, The Communist Dracula Pageant, Let Me Down Easy, When It’s Hot It’s Cole, Cardenio, Julius Caesar, Copenhagen, Donnie Darko, A Marvelous Party, No Man's Land, Oliver Twist, Britannicus, The Onion Cellar, The Island of SlavesOrpheus X, Romeo and Juliet, No Exit, Three Sisters (2005), The Keening, Amerika, Olly's Prison, Desire Under the Elms, Dido Queen of Carthage, The Provok'd Wife (original music and sound), The Miser, A Midsummer Night's Dream (2003), Snow in June, Lady with a Lapdog, The Sound of a Voice, Pericles, Highway Ulysses, Uncle Vanya, Lysistrata, Absolution, Marat/Sade, Stone Cold Dead Serious, Enrico IV, Othello, Animals and Plants, The Doctor's Dilemma, Mother Courage and Her Children, Three Farces and a Funeral, Antigone, Nocturne, How I Learned to Drive, and Man and Superman. He has also toured regionally and internationally with the A.R.T.  Other credits include Farragut North and Yankee Tavern (Contemporary American Theater Festival), The Merchant of Venice (Actor’s Shakespeare Project), Ah, Wilderness! (CenterStage Baltimore), The Diary of Anne Frank (New Rep), The Scottish Play (La Jolla Playhouse), Leap (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), Daughter of Venus, Action Jesus and Dressed Up! Wigged Out! (Boston Playwrights’ Theatre), Sideways Stories from Wayside School, All of a Kind Family and The Fabulous Invalid (Emerson Stage), Samson Agonistes (92nd St. Y), Our Town (Boston Theatre Works), Far East (Vineyard Playhouse), Only You (Efron Entertainment). Dance soundscapes include works for Concord Academy Dance, Snappy Dance Theater Company, and Lorraine Chapman.  Awards: 2007 Connecticut Critics Circle Award (No Exit, Hartford Stage), 2001 Elliot Norton Award (Mother Courage and Her Children, A.R.T.), seven Independent Reviewers of New England Award nominations.

View full biography

Assistant direction by

Timothy Banker

Roebuck Ramsden/Statue Alvin Epstein
Octavius Robinson Scott Ripley
Jack Tanner/Don Juan Don Reilly
Ann Whitefield/Doña Ana Kristin Flanders
Mrs. Whitefield Marya Lowry
Violet Robinson Racheal Warren
Straker Stephen Rowe
Hector Malone Jason Fisher
Mendoza/Devil Jeremy Geidt
Hector Malone Sr. Jack Willis
Brigands Scott Harrison
Robert Kropf
Jeremy Rabb
Kevin Varner