Jane Austen’s Persuasion
adaptation by Jennifer Le Blanc
Winner of the 2013 “Standout New Works Award” for its premiere
production by the Silicon Valley Small Theatre Association
Its world premier was produced by San Jose Stage Company in 2013, Persuasion has received critical acclaim. It was recently produced at Ross Valley Players, in Ross, California and Livermore Shakespeare Festival in Livermore, California.
Fans of Jane Austen adaptations know the care and work required to preserve her intellect and wit; and there is something in this play for Austen fans new and old.
New productions are being planned nationwide in 2017! You can also learn more by viewing the media kit, as well as some selections of production reviews below:
Karen D’Souza of the San Jose Mercury News said of the adaptation:
Slyly adapted by playwright Jennifer Le Blanc, “Persuasion” rings with Austen’s customary elegance and wit, the spirit of independent thinking that made her one of the greatest novelists of her day.
…One of the chief pleasures of the production is Le Blanc’s use of the text. Passages from the book are often spoken aloud, in the manner of the Word for Word company, so that the richness of Austen’s famously deadpan characterizations comes across.
Kelleher’s production enhances this with clever bits of staging, such as spinning parasols simulating turning wheels of a carriage or actors holding up a tablecloth to suggest a dining room table. The novel comes to life in our mind’s eye, which is as it should. Much is left to the imagination here, perfectly in keeping with style and tone of “Persuasion.”
SanJose.com’s Review by Sean Conwell noted:
Jane Austen’s novels are so noted for their insight into the manners and domestic proprieties of their age that it’s easy to forget how lively, indeed funny, her work is. An element of danger also arises: those idyllic country settings are really battlefields in which lone heroines square off against an array of Willoughbys, Wickhams and Crawfords. Polite social interactions might take the place of guns and artillery, but one wrong move can still lead to certain disaster.
Successful adaptations understand this, and locals may recall the excellent 2011 production of Sense and Sensibility by TheatreWorks as one such triumph. With San Jose Stage’s Persuasion, a version written by local actress Jennifer Le Blanc, who appeared as Elinor Dashwood in the aforementioned Sense and Sensibility, there’s a definite sense that the torch has been passed. This production takes elements that worked well at TheatreWorks and scales them down to fit the more intimate confines of San Jose Stage’s venue.
Full review available: http://www.sanjose.com/2013/04/10/persuasion_at_the_stage/
4 jewels out of 5 in the review tiara for an admirable adaptation and a night of period romantic drama and light comedy.
Milwaukee Express Review, July 16th, 2014 by Selena Milewski:
Using Jennifer Le Blanc’s recent award-winning adaptation, Acacia Theatre presents an engaging production of Jane Austen’s Persuasion. The script fluidly combines direct address and dialogue to keep the audience abreast of the characters’ locations and intricate social and familial ties.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Review, July, 15 2014 by Melinda Rhodebeck:
The plus side includes […] Le Blanc’s adaptation, which splices Austen’s superbly controlled, free-indirect speech with characters’ own voices, deftly passing the narrative baton among them in a way that advances the story without feeling stilted.
Additional review by Darshana Varia extoling the production at San Jose Stage Company and was Stark Insider’s theatre pick for entertainment.
We look forward to seeing you in attendance of a production of Jane Austen’s Persuasion – one of Jennifer Le Blanc’s adaptations (wink… there are more coming…)!