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Jane Austen's 'Pride and Prejudice' coming to PAC

The cast for
The cast for 'Pride and Prejudice' includes, in back, Cerris Morgan-Moyer, Nick Torren, and, in front, Chloe Dworkin, Julia McIlvaine and Darren Richardson.
— image credit: courtesy photo/Matt Petit

Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy — her prejudice, his pride.

In her masterpiece, "Pride and Prejudice," first published in 1813, Jane Austen portrayed the slow unfolding of their love against the backdrop of manners, upbringing, morality, education and marriage in the society of the landed gentry of early 19th century England.

Now with L.A. Theatre Works and Auburn Bravo Series bringing Austen's book to life on stage at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9 at the Auburn Performing Arts Center, the time is ripe to celebrate the 200th anniversary of its publication.

The production has captured the essence of the classic story in a radio-play style format, complete with live sound effects creation on stage.

"L.A. Theatre Works has a long history of producing outstanding theater, and this is storytelling at its best," said Majia McKnight, City of Auburn arts coordinator, "They don't have super neat sets, but all of the actors are dressed in costume, and a lot of the focus is on the words and the sounds of the story itself. The company comes with someone who, from offstage, just focuses on the sound effects of what's going on all around the actors, like the clippity-clop of horses' hooves or the bang of a book dropping."

Nicholas Hormann and Jane Carr, both with many silver screen credits to their names, star as as Mr. and Mrs. Bennet, the aging parents of the five Bennet sisters.

Austen's works of romantic fiction are still popular today, ensuring her place as one of the most beloved writers in English literature.

"The Auburn Library is so excited to be working with the City of Auburn and a couple of other great agencies ... around this community reading campaign for 'Pride and Prejudice,'" said Steven Bailey, manager of the Auburn Library. "This idea started last year when the City approached us and told us they were planning to bring a stage production to the Performing Arts Center. The plans started to roll from there."

As part of the fun, several members of Green River Community College's English faculty will come to the library to lecture on various Austen-centered topics.

Bailey said the library has some free copies of Austen's work to distribute throughout the community and has planned book discussion groups throughout February and March. It will show screen adaptations of "Pride and Prejudice" and other Austen works and host a high tea March 10 at the Auburn Senior Activities Center.

For more information on related programs, visit www.auburnlovesausten.com.

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Showtime

• What: Bravo presents "Pride and Prejudice" by L.A. Theatre Works

• When: 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 9

• Where: Auburn Performing Arts Center, 700 E. Main St.

• Tickets: $20 regular, $18 students, seniors. Call 253-931-3043, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday, or online through Brown Paper Tickets at www.auburnwa.gov/arts.

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