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Release: Immediate

Iowa Summer Rep presents staged reading of Simon's 'The Good Doctor'

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Iowa Summer Rep festival of plays by Neil Simon will present a staged reading of "The Good Doctor" at 8 p.m. Tuesday, July 22 in the David Thayer Theatre of the University of Iowa Theatre Building.

"The Good Doctor," which was chosen for the reading at Simon's recommendation, is a theatrical adaptation of short stories by Anton Chekhov. The rarely-produced comedy, which premiered in 1973 -- just before another of the Iowa Summer Rep selections, "God's Favorite" -- connects the diverse Chekhov stories through the use of a recurring writer/narrator.

The use of a writer/narrator is a device to which Simon returned a decade later in his famous autobiographical "B" trilogy -- "Brighton Beach Memoirs," "Biloxi Blues" and "Broadway Bound. "Broadway Bound" was the opening production of Iowa Summer Rep '97.

The reading, featuring actors from the Iowa Summer Rep '97 company, is directed by Sandra Cavanaugh, who also directed the Iowa Summer Rep production of "Broadway Bound." Cavanaugh says that Simon was clearly attracted by the subtle, insightful humor of Chekhov. "In this play you have the humor of Chekhov, overlaid with a lot of Neil Simon humor," Cavanaugh explains.

Tickets for the reading of Neil Simon's "The Good Doctor" are $3, and may be purchased in advance from the Hancher box office.

Hancher box office hours are 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays. From the local calling area or outside Iowa, dial (319) 335-1160. Long distance within Iowa and western Illinois is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. Orders may be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge their purchases to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select the option of payroll deduction.

People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should dial (319) 335-1158. The line is equipped with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.

The University of Iowa Community Credit Union is the corporate sponsor of Iowa Summer Rep.