Thursday, April 11, 2013

Central Florida debut of 'Frost/Nixon' gets political

ORLANDO — Peter Morgan’s play “Frost/Nixon” will bring drama, comedy, and a touch of sadness, with its upcoming Central Florida premiere at the John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center in Loch Haven Park starting on Friday, April 12.

When asked about the challenges this play presents director, John DiDonna, said “..finding the balance between historical truth and theatrical creation.”

This play is primarily centered on the historic meetings between British talk show host David Frost and former U.S. President Richard Nixon. Segments of the play are taken straight from the groundbreaking interviews addressing the infamous Watergate political scandal, that drew a record setting 45 million television viewers for a political interview back in 1977.
Featured in the starring roles of this production are two seasoned and highly skilled actors, Tim Williams as David Frost, and Stephan Jones as Richard Nixon.

“It was interesting discoveries on who he is as a human being,” said Jones, when asked about his work on portraying the former president. “So that I’m able to show who he is and where he came from, despite his foibles and his fallacies.”
Despite the serious nature of the back story on this play there is also a surprising amount of humor featured throughout. The talented actors and crew involved with this production have formed a strong bound over the short time they have spent together and are well on their way to bringing home this challenging showcase.

Another standout performance featured in this play is that of the narrator James Reston Jr. played by John Bateman, who acts to connect the audience with the people involved and inevitably decodes a critical piece of the Watergate puzzle.
“He [Reston] believes in a lot of strong held democratic traditions,”said Bateman. “He believes in a certain freedom and in a way he has never compromised that.” 

Performances will be going on for three weeks on select days starting on Friday, April 12 through Sunday, April 28 at the Mandell Theater in the Orlando Shakespeare Center. Shows will be performed starting at 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays with Sunday matinee performances starting at 2 p.m. There will also be a special industry night performance on Monday April 22 at 8 p.m.  

Tickets are $20 for general admission and $15 for students and seniors with cash only at the door, and group rates are available for 10 or more tickets purchases. For more information on credit card pre-orders visit and reservations can be made by calling 407.328.900.

By James Tutten

(Photos by James Tutten)


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