First performed in 1979 at Tarragon Theatre in Toronto, Jitters was an instant critical and commercial success. In the years since, it has proven to be one of Canada’s most enduring and popular plays and “a bona fide Canadian classic” (Toronto Star).
The story follows a group of actors rehearsing a new play with hopes of Broadway-bound success. Comprising this motley crew are diva Broadway expat Jessica Logan (Megan Leitch), her counterpart Patrick Flanagan (Robert Moloney), and their castmates Tom Kent (Kamyar Pazandeh) and Phil Mastorakis (James Fagan Tait). Together, they struggle to set aside their egos and anxieties in order to make it to the big time.
Add to that a besieged director (Martin Happer), a disciplinarian stage manager (Raugi Yu) and his assistant (Lauren Bowler), the timid playwright (Ryan Beil), and an unflappable front-of-house manager (Kaitlin Williams), and anything from a forgotten line to a faulty wig may just make or break their new Canadian play.
This Arts Club production, directed by David Mackay, pays tribute to the company’s beginnings at the Seymour Street Stage, particularly with the set design by Ted Roberts.
On directing the show, Mackay says, “There are a number of reasons I’m excited to be directing Jitters. One, we’re setting it in period, in all its 1979 glory—the tail end of disco meets the upswing of new wave. As well, this production has a collection of stellar comedic actors. And finally, this backstage comedy is hilarious. The characters are believable as they stumble hysterically towards opening night. A true Canadian classic!”
Starring Ryan Beil (Robert Ross), Lauren Bowler (Peggy), Martin Happer (George Ellsworth), Megan Leitch(Jessica Logan), Robert Moloney (Patrick Flanagan), Kamyar Pazandeh (Tom Kent), James Fagan Tait (Phil Mastorakis), Kaitlin Williams (Susi), Raugi Yu (Nick)
Director David Mackay Set Designer Ted Roberts Costume Designer Mara Gottler Lighting Designer Gerald King Sound Designer Murray Price Stage Manager Angela Beaulieu Assistant Stage Manager Peter Jotkus