Shahrazad premieres 'Around the World in 80 Days' at Ensemble
As part of its 39th season, Ensemble Theatre is co-producing Shahrazad Theatre’s adaptation of Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days. Directed by Shahrazad co-founder August Scarpelli, the play will be a world-premiere production, running Nov. 30 through Dec. 16 in Ensemble’s PlayGround Theater (2843 Washington Blvd.).
The story follows the adventures of Phileas Fogg and his newly employed French valet, Passepartout, as they attempt to travel around the globe in 80 days.
“I consider Jules Verne to have been a very lucky man,” Scarpelli said, “because the natural curiosity and sense of adventure that we are all born with was something that he held close to his heart for his entire life, and there is little that is more important than that, especially today.”
Seeking to adapt a work that would be fun for the whole family, the company chose Verne's story.
“Like Shahrazad herself, our mission is to shed new light on old wisdom so that we may move forward and spend our short lives on this big earth wisely,” Scarpelli explained. “We have chosen to adapt the book ourselves, following the spirit of Ensemble Theatre’s productions of classic literature such as “The Great Gatsby” and “East of Eden.”
Dubbed “an interactive adaptation for the whole family,” “Around the World in 80 Days” will star local actors and provide entertainment for adults and children alike.
Showtimes for “Around the World in 80 Days” will be Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m., with matinee performances on Saturdays at 3 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
Tyler Whidden is a playwright and associate artistic director at Ensemble Theatre. He also co-hosts "The Cleveland Stage Podcast."