Northeastern Illinois University

Stage Center Theatre


The Main Stage 1998 Season

THE FRONT PAGE
Director: Anna Antaramian
October / November 1998

by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur

THE FRONT PAGE is one of America's most endearing comedies and has been produced many times since its Broadway premiere in 1928. Both Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur had experience in the newspaper business and the play drew liberally on the shenanigans of a big-city press room. In the play reporters in the Chicago city-hall newsroom encounter con men, prostitutes, corrupt politicians, and a runaway convict. The newsmen are hardly angelic and the language is colloquial and has some profanity.

The editor of the Examiner, Walter Burns, his feature writer, Hildy Johnson, get the story into the paper with the murder, Earl Williams and his witness, Mollie Malloy in the press room.
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From left to right Kimberly Sawyer (Mollie Malloy), Michael Foster Lehrer (Earl Williams), Tim Hughes (Walter Burns), and Mike McNamara (Hildy Johnson)

One newsman, Hildy Johnson, wants to retire from the newspaper business and start a new life. He is drawn back into the unusual life of a newspaper man because of an escaped convict and almost doesn't start his new life. The madcap antics of the newsmen and their quest for a news story makes the play a lot of fun.

The newsmen in THE FRONT PAGE, though colleagues, try to "scoop" the each other with the hottest item around: the escape of Earl Williams, the killer.
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From left to right Mike McNamara (Hildy), Bill Hyland (Schwartz), Adrian Viccellio (Murphy), Larry Filas (Benzinger), Frank Polancic (McCue), Mike Schmidt (Wilson).

The play was lauded for its authenticity in an era where realism was prominent on the New York stage and we are producing it today in that same liberal atmosphere.

THE FRONT PAGE was the first main stage production in a two year season at Northeastern Illinois University called Countdown to 2,000. The season for 1998-1999 includes plays from the 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's.continuing into the 1999-2000 season with plays from the 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's.

THE FRONT PAGE Cast of Characters

Murphy............................. ADRIAN VICCELLIO
Endicott............................ ZACKARY PRICE
Schwartsz........................ BILL HYLAND
Wilson............................. MIKE SCHMIDT
Kruger............................. ALLEN DAVIS
McCcue........................... FRANK POLANCIC
Bensinger......................... LARRY FILAS
Hildy Johnson.................. MIKE MCNAMARA
Walter Burns................... TIM HUGHES
Sheriff Hartman............... GLENN FRAIL
Mayor............................. RON WEINER
Mr. Pincus....................... BRUCE URSO
Diamond Louis................. DAVID CORA
Early Williams ..................MICHAEL FOSTER LEHRER
Peggy Grant..................... LEIGH LOVINGOOD
Mollie Malloy................... KIMBERLY SAWYER
Mrs. Grant.....................JUDY DUNN
Mrs. Schlosser................. JILL SOLTYSLAKI
Woodenshoes.................. DAMON POPOVICH
Policemen:.......................
                                         GARY CAHILL
                                         IGNACIO COELLO

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More pictures from the production of THE FRONT PAGE:

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