The Millionairess: George Bernard Shaw's Comedy from Olney Theatre Center
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The last date listed for The Millionairess was Sunday July 19, 2009 / 2:00pm.
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How do you find love and happiness when you’re the richest woman in the world? That is the dilemma at the heart of George Bernard Shaw’s rousing comedy, The Millionairess.
The Millionairess is an irresistibly seductive play about wealthy, glamorous Epifania Ognisanti di Parerga and her search for happiness. Epifania has honored the vow she made to her late father: not to marry until she finds a man with a talent for making money. Unfortunately, her professional athlete husband, Alastair Fitzfassenden, turns out to be less than Prince Charming.
While Alastair canoodles with his girlfriend Patricia, Epifania passes the time with Adrian Blenderbland until he insults her late father. She meets an Egyptian doctor with whom she falls madly in love. He challenges her to live for six months on a starting sum of 35 shillings. Is she up to the task?
The Millionairess ran in London and in New York in 1952; Katherine Hepburn played the title role. Twelve years earlier, when Hepburn was starring in The Philadelphia Story, Shaw himself had suggested that she was just the sort of actress to play his millionairess. In 1960, a film version was made featuring Sophia Loren as Epifania and Peter Sellers as the doctor. Other actresses who have portrayed the eccentric Epifania include Maggie Smith, Tyne Daly, and Raquel Welch.
The Millionairess is in the capable hands of Associate Artistic Director John Going. Going has staged more than 30 productions at Olney, including The Mousetrap; Doubt; 13 Rue de L’Amour; I Am My Own Wife; and The Constant Wife. A four-time Helen Hayes Award nominee, Going received the award for Outstanding Direction for his work on The Miser at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre. He won the Kevin Kline Award for Best Director for I Am My Own Wife at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis.