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Phipps stages theatrical comedy

The Phipps Center for the Arts is staging "The Play's the Thing," a theatrical comedy by Ferenc Molnar, adapted by P.G. Wodehouse, April 4-27.

The famous playwright Sandor Turai and his collaborator bring their young composer, Albert, on a surprise visit to an Italian castle with their prima donna, Ilona, who is engaged to Albert. The fun includes many acidulous comments on the arts of acting and playmaking.

In the midst of it all, the impassioned young Albert overhears his beloved making love to someone in her boudoir. Turai tells him it is all a monstrous mistake and tries to make it appear that the passionate scene was a rehearsal for a new play. To support his fabrication, he stays up all night to write a play that includes the lines Albert overheard. The next day there is a public rehearsal where the suggestive dialogue is reborn as an innocent and meaningless prank.

Director Matt Sciple has directed, written and acted in over 70 Twin Cities-area productions. He has staged plays for Park Square Theatre, the Jon Hassler Theater, Theatre in the Round, Theatre L'Homme Dieu and the Paul Bunyan Playhouse.

Nine performances are scheduled April 4-26 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sunday, April 27, at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $21 for adults and $14 for all students with a current I.D., with a $2 discount for the opening weekend, and a $2 discount for seniors on the Sunday matinee.

For reservations, contact The Phipps ticket office at (715) 386-8409 or