John Worthing lives a double life. While in London he is Ernest, the lively urban bachelor. While in the country with his ward Cecily, he is Jack, the serious morally minded suburban gentleman. The inscription in a forgotten cigarette case reveals Jack’s deceit to his close London friend Algernon who, while calling out his friend’s impropriety, admits to having his own nom to folie. Chaos ensues as Ernest proposes marriage to Algernon’s cousin Gwendolen, and Algernon pursues Ernest’s ward Cecily. Will this farce through London and the British countryside end in marriage and happiness? As we all struggle to come to grips with the serious issues facing our world today, there is no better way to spend an evening than reveling in the masterful wit of Wilde’s “iridescent filament of fantasy,” which is as comic and relevant today as it was at its premiere in 1895.

In a wild reimagining of the play, Quintessence Theatre will set THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST in 1960s England.

Josh Carpenter*, who played the titular role in Quintessence’s HenryV, returns to Philadelphia to play Algernon Moncrieff. Jake Blouch, currently seen in Arden Theatre’s Superior Donuts and previously in Lantern Theatre’s A Skull in Connemara, will join the cast as John Worthing. And celebrated Philadelphia actress Janis Dardaris* makes her Quintessence debut and a star turn as Wilde’s indomitable Lady Bracknell. Also featuring Sean Close as Merriman, Paul Hebron* as Lane and Dr Chasuble, Marie Maginity as Miss Prism, Janel Miley as Gwendolen Fairfax, and Emily Rast as Cecily Cardew.