Set in the early part of 20th century Russia, Chekhov’s classic comedy The Cherry Orchard is the story of the tragic-comic events that take place in the household of Lyuba Ranevskaya. The descendants of an old aristocratic family, Lyuba and her brother Gayev cannot come to terms with the social and economic changes surging around them. When the money runs out, Lyuba is forced to return from Paris to Russia. It quickly becomes clear that the old estate must be sold, and the family itself begins to disintegrate, each member desperate either for drastic change, or to cling to the old life as they know it. The Cherry Orchard was Chekhov’s final play. It reflects a collection of events from his own life, and perhaps because it was his last play, he captures in humorous, bittersweet empathy a family’s struggle with fading dreams against the backdrop of a growing revolutionary machine.
Cast & Staff
Cast & Staff
(in order of their appearance)
|Anya, as a young girl||Lindsey Kanaga|
|Grisha, Madame Ranevskaya’s son||Gabriel Spatzeck-Olsen|
|Yermolay Alexeyevich Lopakhin, a merchant||Chris Kanaga|
|Dunyasha, the maid||Sr. Phoenix Marcella|
|Semyon Panteleyevich Yepikhodov, the clerk||Br. Stephen Velie|
|Firs, a valet, age eighty-seven||Luke Norman|
|Lyubov Andreyevna Ranevskaya, owner of the cherry orchard||Sr. Danielle Dwyer|
|Anya, Madame Ranevskaya’s daughter||Ellen Ortolani|
|Varya, Madame Ranevskaya’s adopted daughter||Rachel McKendree|
|Masha, a servant||Cori Shannon|
|Leonid Andreyevich Gayev, Madame Ranevskaya’s brother||Brad Lussier|
|Charlotta Ivanovna, the governess||Kate Shannon|
|Simeonov-Pishchik, a landowner||Peter Haig|
|Yasha, a valet||Br. Anthony Kanaga|
|Pyotr Sergeyevich Trofimov, a student||Kyle Norman|
|Station Master||Br. Jacob Witter|
|Irina, young servant||Lindsey Kanaga|
Br. Richard Cragg
Sr. Huai-Kuang Miao
Br. Jacob Witter
Sr Danielle Dwyer
To see the entire program or read the program notes click here
News & Reviews
News & Reviews
“The show is impeccably produced on several levels…” —Cape Cod Times
“In Elements Theatre Company’s dramatic rendition of Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, no detail is overlooked, from lively Russian folk dancing to the perfect pronunciation of tongue-twisting Russian names….” —Cape Codder
“Elements’ portrayal is both beautifully constructed and superbly acted, and the company pulls together a seamless depiction of a family falling apart….” —Barnstable Patriot
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From the Director
From the Director
There is so much to be found in The Cherry Orchard; the intricacy of relationships, the limitations inherent to interaction between different levels of social class, and the haunting power of memory. In Lopakhin’s case memory drives him forward, while for Madame Ranevskya, the past anchors her in a state of denial. Both are unable to let their memories be—they hang on them, almost tangibly, like shawls or heavy woolen sweaters.
Hints of the unrest leading to the revolution of 1917 are present in The Cherry Orchard, but this play really isn’t about the politics that lead up to the revolution. It is about the inevitability of change. And of course money, or the lack thereof, plays a large part in this play. This once wealthy family is overcome with debts, and a crumbling estate that has a beautiful yet unproductive cherry orchard. Do they sell what has been in the family for almost 100 years or do they hope loans and friends will help them? For many of us, who have experienced the economic upheaval of the last 18 months, their predicament is not foreign to the imagination.
One beauty of Chekhov’s art is his unobtrusive view into human nature and the simple routines that make up our days, revealing much about the stuff of which we are made.
“In our troubled times…societies are seized by laziness, boredom with life and disbelief, when all around us there reigns a strange combination of hatred of life and fear of death, when even the best of our people sit around twiddling their thumbs, justifying their laziness and depravity with the fact that life has no meaning, we need enthusiasts the way we need the sun.”
It was Chekhov’s hope and desire that by writing honestly about life as he saw it, his countrymen might reflect on his honesty, and be inspired to better their lives.
Thank you for joining us as we celebrate the 150th Birthday of Anton Chekhov, by exploring the riches and beauty of The Cherry Orchard.