University of Rochester

EVENT: International Theatre Program to Perform The Illusion at Geva Theatre Center

March 23, 2010

The University of Rochester's International Theatre program will perform The Illusion for local audiences at the Geva Theatre Center, as part of Geva's first-ever CollegeFest. Created as a way to celebrate the theatrical work of students in the area's colleges and universities, Geva will host theater groups from the University of Rochester, SUNY Brockport, and Nazareth College from April 1 to 18 at the Nextstage Theatre.

Directed by Nigel Meister, artistic director for the University's International Theatre Program, The Illusion questions the true nature of love, loss, and reality. Set almost entirely in a mysterious cave, the story follows a guilt-ridden father's attempt to reconnect with his estranged and disinherited son through three visions conjured up by a well-meaning magician. The Illusion originated in 1636 as Corneille's L'illusion comique (The Theatrical Illusion), a comedy about the delights of the theater. In 1988, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tony Kushner freely adapted the play, while incorporating his own interpretations on commitment and betrayal. The play has a special connection to the area as well as the University, as Kushner's mother, Sylvia Deutscher Kushner, was herself a graduate of the Eastman School of Music.

The Illusion is the first CollegeFest's of three performances, followed by The Story by SUNY Brockport and Kindertransport by Nazareth College. The Illusion was presented in fall 2009, kicking off the University Theatre Program's 20th anniversary season.

The Illusion will run April 1 to 3 at 7 p.m. with 1:30 p.m. matinee on April 4 in the Nextstage at Geva Theatre Center at 75 Woodbury Blvd. in Rochester. General admission tickets are $15 (student rush tickets are available for $8, 15 minutes before performances, subject to availability). Tickets may be purchased by calling 585-232-GEVA (4382) or online at For additional information about CollegeFest or for media inquiries, contact Dawn Kellogg, communications manager at Geva at (585) 232-1366 ext. 3059 or e-mail

About the University of Rochester
The University of Rochester ( is one of the nation's leading private universities. Located in Rochester, N.Y., the University gives students exceptional opportunities for interdisciplinary study and close collaboration with faculty through its unique cluster-based curriculum. Its College, School of Arts and Sciences, and Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are complemented by the Eastman School of Music, Simon School of Business, Warner School of Education, Laboratory for Laser Energetics, Schools of Medicine and Nursing, and the Memorial Art Gallery.

About Geva Theatre Center
Geva Theatre Center is Rochester's leading professional theatre and the most attended regional theatre in New York State. Founded in 1972, Geva attracts over 170,000 patrons annually, including more than 16,000 students. The 552-seat Elaine P. Wilson Mainstage offers a wide variety of shows, from musicals to American and world classics.

The 180-seat Ron & Donna Fielding Nextstage is home to Geva's own series of cutting-edge drama, comedy and musical theatre; Geva Comedy Improv; Geva's New Play Reading Series and the Hornet's Nest - an innovative play-reading series facilitating community-wide discussion on controversial topics. The Nextstage also hosts visiting companies of both local and international renown.

Geva Theatre Center offers a wide variety of educational, outreach and literary programs, nurturing audiences and artists alike. For the past fourteen years the organization has been led by Artistic Director Mark Cuddy.