Outdoor Theatre Production Debuts at Cuneo Mansion and Gardens
Oh, What a Bloody Good Friday: Playful Mystery Premieres September 9, 2011
CHICAGO, August 18, 2011 — Loyola University Chicago English professor Terence Boyle will present his play Oh, What a Bloody Good Friday: A Playful Mystery* as the first outdoor summer theatre production held at Cuneo Mansion and Gardens. From September 9–11, 2011, this mystery will bring a contemporary version of the death and resurrection of Christ to audiences.
Oh, What a Bloody Good Friday: A Playful Mystery grew out of Boyle’s experience at the bi-annual 14th Century Mystery plays held in York, England, where he watched 11 plays. From this, he became intrigued by the challenge of creating a modern mystery play, and worked creatively with director Katie Miller to create this production. Their creativity paid off as the play was named a semi-finalist at the 2011 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference this summer.
“These plays, which were religious in nature, were based on Bible stories. The playwrights of each instilled their own unique touch or spin on the stories, including comedy, in order to communicate better and to engage the audience,” said Boyle. “After witnessing all of these unique productions, I discovered I wanted to construct a similar play, surrounding it around a religious event, but also setting it in a contemporary time that enabled the audience to live and breathe the play as well. That is the basis of how Oh, What a Bloody Good Friday: A Playful Mystery was created.”
The play, set in contemporary time, centers upon the death and resurrection of Christ in Derry, Northern Ireland after the 1998 ceasefire, also called the Good Friday agreement, which was the establishment of peace of Northern Ireland. The play begins with God, a character who hangs out at a local park and who is viewed as the outsider, commenting on the events, which have led to the death of Christ. His reflections are quickly built on by the four main characters: Murray, the mother of Jesus, Mary, as in Mary Magdalene, Siobhan, a sassy, young, good-time woman, and Phyllis, a middle-aged teacher who fears getting older.
“We are very excited to present this modern day mystery as our first outdoor summer theatre production,” said Kevin Ginty, general manager of the Cuneo estate. “We strive to offer an array of educational programming, events, and entertainment for the local community, and this play is an example of that. While the majority of our events are family friendly, we do stress that this production contains adult language and is not appropriate for children.”
The play will be held outside in the back yard area of the Cuneo Mansion and Gardens. Attendees should provide their own chairs and blankets. Tickets are $18 per adult and $15 for students and seniors for each play. Performances (rain or shine) will occur on the following dates and times:
- Friday, September 9 at 7:30 p.m.
- Saturday, September 10 at 1 p.m.
- Sunday, September 11 at 1 p.m.
For more information on this play and to purchase tickets, please visit cuneomansion.org, or visit http://ohwhatabloodygoodfriday.com.
About the Cuneo Mansion and Gardens
Construction on the Cuneo Mansion and Gardens began in 1908 and stopped during World War. It was completed in 1918 as the home of Samuel Insull, the creator of Commonwealth Edison and a leading businessman of the 1920s, and designed by Chicago architect Benjamin Marshall in the Italianate style. Its gardens and landscaping were designed by world-renowned landscape architect Jens Jensen. In 1937, John Cuneo Sr. bought the home. He and his wife, Julia, had two children, John Jr. and Consuela, whom they raised on the estate. John Sr. owned and operated Hawthorn Mellody Farms Dairy, the National Tea Company, and the Cuneo Press. The mansion, which opened to the public as the Cuneo Museum and Gardens in 1991, now called Cuneo Mansion and Gardens, houses the Cuneo family collection of fine antiques, paintings by world-famous artists, tapestries, sculptures, silver, and porcelain. For more information on the Cuneo Mansion and Gardens, please visit cuneomansion.org.
About Loyola University Chicago
Committed to preparing people to lead extraordinary lives, Loyola University Chicago, founded in 1870, is the nation’s largest Jesuit, Catholic university. Enrollment is nearly 16,000 students, which includes almost 10,000 undergraduates hailing from all 50 states and 82 countries. The University has four campuses: three in the greater Chicago area and one in Rome, Italy. Loyola also serves as the U.S. host university to The Beijing Center for Chinese Studies in Beijing, China and now features an academic center in Saigon-Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Loyola’s 10 schools and colleges include arts and sciences, business administration, communication, education, graduate studies, law, medicine, nursing, continuing and professional studies, and social work. Loyola offers 71 undergraduate majors, 71 undergraduate minors, 85 master’s degrees, and 31 doctoral degrees. Loyola is consistently ranked among the “top national universities” by U.S.News & World Report, and the University is among a select group of universities recognized for community service and engagement by prestigious national organizations, such as the Carnegie Foundation and the Corporation for National and Community Service. For more information about Loyola, please visit LUC.edu.