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GTA presents Hitchcock classic, 'The 39 Steps'
39 Steps photo1
Gainesville Theatre Alliance’s SouthernStage production of Alfred Hitchock’s “The 39 Steps,” opens April 5 at the Buford Community Center's Sylvia Beard Theatre. The cast includes Josh Carpenter, Elizabeth Wells Berkes, Jimi Kocina and Matt Magill.

Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘The 39 Steps’

When: 7:30 p.m. April 5-7, April 11-14, 2:30 p.m. April 13

Where: Buford Community Center’s Sylvia Beard Theatre, 2200 Buford Highway, Buford

How much: $16-$18 adults, $14-$16 seniors, $10-$12 students and children; two- or four-person VIP boxes $40; $9 for two front row seats to Buford residents; 20 percent discount for groups of 12 or more

More info: 678-717-3624,

A series of wildly unexpected and downright funny twists mark the Gainesville Theatre Alliance’s SouthernStage production of Alfred Hitchock’s “The 39 Steps,” opening April 5 at the Buford Community Center.

A free Stage Tour, a sneak peek behind the scenes of the show, is set for 6 p.m., Thursday, March 28, in the Sylvia Beard Theatre. Patrons will hear from director Jim Hammond, artistic and managing director for the GTA, as well as from designers. The one-hour presentation will end with a scene from the show.

Adapted for the stage from Hitchcock’s 1935 film, the cast includes four actors who play about 150 characters over the course of the show. This fast paced award-winner packs murder, intrigue, spies, handcuffs, missing fingers and an onstage plane crash into one magical night of theatre.

The film was adapted by Hitchcock and screen writer Charles Bennett from a novel by John Buchanan. In 2005, the movie was adapted for the stage as a comedy play within a play by Patrick Barlow and premiered at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in Leeds, England. The play came to the American stage in 2007, with a Boston University production.

“The 39 Steps” had its Broadway debut in 2008 at the American Airlines Theatre and also runs in Paris and Madrid. Top awards have been earned for many of the productions, including Tony awards, Laurence Olivier awards, and Drama Desk Awards.

Several professional companies from around the country have been brought in for this GTA SouthernStage inaugural season. Yet “The 39 Steps” is a show fully produced locally by professional designers and actors.

Appearing in the cast are Josh Carpenter, an Actor’s Equity member based in New York; Atlanta-based Equity actor Elizabeth Wells Berkes; and two other Atlanta area actors, Jimi Kocina and Matt Magill.

Hammond graduated from Brenau College and received his MFA from University of Louisville. One of the first graduates of the collaboration of Gainesville State College and Brenau University, he is now a professor of acting, audition technique, theater management, and acting for film.

“The 39 Steps” will be the final show of the inaugural GTA SouthernStage season. A joint effort between the Alliance and the city of Buford, SouthernStage is a new venture committed to bringing world class theater to Buford.

GTA, formed in 1979, is a nationally acclaimed collaboration between the University of North Georgia, Brenau University, theater professionals and the north Georgia community.

The performance runs April 5-14 in the Sylvia Beard Theatre. Evening performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. and matinees at 2:30 p.m.

Buford Rush Tickets will be available at 6:30 p.m. for all evening shows, with Buford residents presenting a picture ID able to buy two front-row seats for $9.

Regular ticket prices are $16-$18 for adults, $14-$16 for seniors and $10-$12 for students and children. Boxes are available with two or four VIP seats for $40 a ticket.

Patrons can select their own seats online at or call the box office at 678-717-3624.