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Bestseller – Press Release

I N T E R N A T I O N A L   C I T Y   T H E A T R E
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Peter Quilter’s ebullient new comedy
Bestsellergets world premiere at ICT


LONG BEACH, Calif. (May 22, 2019) — International City Theatre presents a zany comic romp about writers, how they write, the stories they tell and the secrets they keep. Jane Page directs the world premiere of Bestseller by internationally renowned playwright Peter Quilter (End of the Rainbow, Glorious!) for a three-week run, June 14 through June 30, at International City Theatre in the Long Beach Performing Arts Center. Two low-priced previews are set for June 12 and June 13.

Wendy Worthington (world premiere of Charles Busch’s Die! Mommy! Die!, national tour of Wicked) stars as Maureen, host of a writers’ retreat at her isolated cottage in the British countryside. Her current guests include Shelley, played by Alexandra Ruth Wright (last seen at ICT in Crimes of the Heart), a hot young writer of steamy romance novels; dark, broody Damien, played by Ian McQuown (Riff Raff in the popular live parody, The Rocky Horror Hipster Show), who specializes in tales of terror, murder and mayhem; and Alex, portrayed by Eric M. Myrick (world premiere of William Grant Still & the Harlem Renaissance at Disney Hall), who is desperately searching for ideas in the face of writer’s block. As they settle in to work, their three hilarious books suddenly jump off the page, with Julia Davis (As You Like It at Antaeus, Roman Holidays at the Getty Villa) and Sam Spanjian (Macbeth with Shakespeare Orange County) bringing each of the characters to comical life on stage.

“It’s not often we get to see a play that is so wonderfully inventive and raucous,” says Page. “The art and craft of writing is built into our everyday thinking and communicating — we often talk about ‘turning a page’ in our life, or being ‘on the same page’ with someone or, perhaps, ‘rewriting a chapter in our life.’ Writers provide a rich spectrum of characters in Bestseller. There are secrets to discover, romances to unwind and friendships to be made. It’s a real treat.”

The creative team for Bestseller includes set designer Christopher Scott Murillo, lighting designer Stacy McKenney Norr, costume designer Kim DeShazo, sound designer Corwin Evans, prop designers Patty and Gordon Briles, and hair and wigs designer Anthony Gagliardi. Casting is by Michael Donovan, and the production stage manager is John H. Freeland, Jr.

Peter Quilter is recognized as one of the most widely produced playwrights in the world. His plays have been presented in major theaters in over 40 countries and translated into 30 languages. He is best known for his West End comedy Glorious! about amateur opera singer Florence Foster Jenkins (produced by ICT in 2014), which was immortalized on film by Meryl Streep, and for End of the Rainbow (seen at ICT in 2015), a Broadway hit that was nominated for three Tony awards and has been adapted for the upcoming movie Judy starring Renee Zellweger. Some of his other plays include BoyBand the Musical, 4000 Days, The Morning After, The Actress, Saving Jason, Duets, Curtain Up! and The Nightingales. 

Jane Page recently directed Parliament Square, an award-winning drama by James Fritz; she had seen the work in London and worked closely with the author on the show. Next, she will direct her renowned production of Much Ado About Nothing for Shakespeare Orange County, Lisa Loomer’s Living Out at UCI, and Human Error by Eric Pfeffinger, with whom she worked to help develop the script, for the North Coast Repertory Theatre. She has also been co-developing a piece about asylum seekers from around the world who are in detention in the United States. She directed Molière’s Tartuffe at the American University in Cairo, Other Desert Cities and God of Carnage in Vienna, and she has twice taken work to the Edinburgh International Festival where she won a Fringe First Award. Jane is head of directing at UC Irvine, where she was recognized as Professor of the Year in 2015. Previously, she was based in Colorado where she directed for the Denver Center Theatre Company and the Colorado Shakespeare Festival.

Bestseller runs Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m., June 14 through June 30. Two preview performances take place on Wednesday, June 12 and Thursday, June 13, both at 8 p.m. Tickets are $47 on Thursdays and Fridays, and $49 on Saturdays and Sundays, except for June 14 (opening night) for which tickets are $55 and include a post-performance reception with the actors. Low-priced tickets to previews are $35

International City Theatre is located in the Long Beach Performing Arts Center at 330 East Seaside Way in Long Beach, CA 90802. For reservations and information, call 562-436-4610 or go to


Details for Calendar Listings

World premiere
of Bestseller — A zany comic romp by internationally acclaimed playwright Peter Quilter (Glorious!, End of the Rainbow) about writers, how they write, the stories they tell and the secrets they keep. When three young novelists gather at an isolated cottage for a writer’s retreat, their hilarious books jump off the page and onto the stage.

• Written by Peter Quilter
• Directed by Jane Page
• Starring Julia Davis, Ian McQuown, Eric M. Myrick, Sam Spanjian, Wendy Worthington, Alexandra Ruth Wright
• Produced by caryn desai [sic]

• Presented by International City Theatre

Previews: June 12 and June 13 at 8 p.m.
Performances: June 14 – June 30
Wednesday at 8 p.m.: June 12 ONLY (preview)
Thursdays at 8 p.m.: June 13 (preview), June 20, June 27

Fridays at 8 p.m.: June 14 (Opening Night), June 21, June 28
Saturdays at 8 p.m.: June 15, June 22, June 29
Sundays at 2 p.m.: June 16, June 23, June 30


Long Beach Performing Arts Center
330 East Seaside Way
Long Beach, CA 90802

562-436-4610 or
• Visit us on facebook:

• Follow us on twitter: @ICTLongBeach and instagram: @ICT_LongBeach

• Opening Night (June 14): $55 (includes post-show reception with the actors)
• Saturdays and Sundays: $49
• Thursdays and Friday (except June 14): $47
• Previews: $35