Oscar Wilde, best remembered for his play “The Importance of Being Earnest” as well as the novel “The Picture of Dorian Gray,” was also at the center of a scandalous trial that ruined him.
The Waterfront Playhouse, on Mallory Square, will present a staged reading of “Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde” by Moises Kaufman (The Laramie Project) at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, June 8 and 9. Tickets are $20 and can be obtained by calling 305- 294-5015 or by visiting www.waterfrontplayhouse.org.
Directed by John McDonald, the cast features Trey Forsyth as Oscar Wilde, Arthur Crocker as his lover Lord Alfred Douglas (Bosey), Bob Wood as the Marquess of Queensbury, Matt Hollis Hulsey as a series of Hustlers, Steve Miller as the Judge, Stephen Kitsakos as the Defense Attorney, John Reynolds as the Prosecuting Attorneys and Peggy Montgomery as the women.
Author Moises Kaufman, not unlike his Laramie Project, uses the actual records of the three trails of Oscar Wilde as the basis for a supremely theatrical, yet honest portrayal of the man charged with “Gross Indecency” and found guilty after three trials and was sentenced to two years hard labor at Reading Gaol. While in jail he wrote De Profundis a long letter that discussed his spiritual journey through his trials as he battled the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune to bring to light “the love that dare not speak its name.” ¦
Waterfront Playhouse 407 Wall St. www.waterfront playhouse.org