California Theatre Center’s “The Contrast” opened last week and is scheduled to run through July 22 at The Sunnyvale Theatre, Sunnyvale Community Center, 550 E. Remington Drive.
Part of the California Theatre Center’s Summer Repertory, it is the first comedy written by an American citizen that was professionally produced. “Contrast” is set in 1787 after the Revolutionary War, but the play has plenty of things to relate to in 21st-century America, including the theme of homemade versus foreign goods and ideas.
The new country faces challenges of self-definition, and these Americans were actively involved in a debate on moral behaviors, economic liberties and standards of education for their young country.
Maria Van Rough is a “dangerously well-read” young lady betrothed as a child to Billy Dimple, a foppish lothario just returned from Europe. But she instead falls in love with Henry Manly, an earnest soldier.
This further complicates Maria’s life in a world of contrasts and characters, which include two calculating belles, a scheming servant, a naive bumpkin and a boorish old father.
The play highlights the contrasts between old and young, integrity and pretense, tradition and innovation, city and country living and high and low society.
Remaining performances are scheduled 7:30 p.m. July 7, 14 and 19 and 3 p.m. July 22.
Tickets are $10-$26; discounts are available for students, seniors and groups of six or more.
For tickets and more information, call (408) 245-2978 or visit www.ctcinc.org.