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The Foreigner

Country Squire Dinner Theatre, Amarillo, Texas (7-19 July 1987)

Appearing as Charlie Baker

A play by Larry Shue.

The scene is a fishing lodge in rural Georgia often visited by "Froggy" LeSeuer, a British demolition expert who occasionally runs training sessions at a nearby army base. This time "Froggy" has brought along a friend, a pathologically shy young man named Charlie (James MacArthur) who is overcome with fear at the thought of making conversation with strangers. So "Froggy," before departing, tells all assembled that Charlie is from an exotic foreign country and speaks no English. Once alone the fun really begins, as Charlie overhears more than he should -- the evil plans of a sinister, two-faced minister and his redneck associate; the fact that the minister's pretty fiancee is pregnant; and many other damaging revelations made with the thought that Charlie doesn't understand a word being said. That he does fuels the nonstop hilarity of the play, and sets up the wildly funny climax in which things go uproariously awry for the "bad guys" and the "good guys" emerge triumphant.

"Honed humor in Foreigner"

review by Kay Mohr

Amarillo Sunday News-Globe (12 July 1987)

Thieves prowled the stage during the Country Squire Dinner Theater's opening night production of The Foreigner. One scene stealer after another entered and exited from the theater-in-the-round stage.

James MacArthur tops the list as stealer extraordinaire, but he is given a fast run for his lines with this supporting cast of incorrigibles. A Broadway casting agent couldn't hand pick a better line-up of performers for this play. They suit each other like parolees hanging around the probation office.

The Foreigner, which brought raves on Broadway, doesn't pretend to be a laugh-a-minute production. Its charm comes from consistently well honed tongue-in-cheek humor.

The story revolves around Englishman MacArthur (Charlie Baker) who visits a fishing lodge resort in Georgia. Charlie -- who says that "idle conversation terrifies me" -- uses the ploy of not speaking English to ward off any interaction with the natives.

But life isn't a smooth road and Charlie's ploy backfires, involving him with the other characters because they tend to tell "the foreigner" everything, thinking he understands nothing.

When called upon to speak, Charlie's concocted "foreign language" is a source of rich comedy during the play.

Several highlights in the production include Charlie giving "lessons" in his language, his telling of a story in his "native tongue" and a speechless breakfast scene between Charlie and Kyle Page, who plays the dim-witted Ellar.


"Froggy" LeSeuer: Steve Jones
Charlie Baker: James MacArthur
Betty Meeks: Bee Vary
Rev. David Marshall Lee: Steve Berrier
Catherine Simms: Fleur Fox
Owen Musser: Stan Norman
Ellar D. Simms: Kyle Page

The Foreigner Script

The Foreigner Program featuring James MacArthur

The Foreigner cast list

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