Barefoot in the Park
By NEIL SIMON
DIRECTOR’S NOTE | GREG JOHNSON
Montana Repertory Theatre takes pride in producing plays from the great American canon––stories that reveal the American character and hold a mirror to our mutual longings, dreams, defeats, and victories. In this vein, we have produced the works of Arthur Miller, Tennessee Williams, Wendy Wasserstein, and Harper Lee, among others.
Over the years we have presented four plays by America’s master of comedy, Neil Simon. We have been privileged to produce The Sunshine Boys, Broadway Bound, Biloxi Blues, and Lost in Yonkers, all with great success. It comes as no surprise, therefore, that for our fiftieth anniversary season we once again turn to Mr. Simon and produce the play that put him on the map over fifty years ago––Barefoot in the Park. I recently reread the play as we contemplated producing it for this anniversary season. As I came to the last page, I thought, “This is the American Molière.” Mr. Simon, like Molière, is a genius of comedy and of the human heart. Through comedy, Mr. Simon explores love, relationship, marriage, and family––the pangs of loss and the joy of reunion.
Fifty years ago Montana Rep began. Just over fifty years ago, Barefoot in the Park was produced on Broadway, jumpstarting a career unmatched in modern times. We feel it is fitting in this auspicious season to honor and produce one of the true giants of the American theatre. Please join us as we celebrate a half-century of great theatre!