Arthur T. Acuña stars in The Arabian Nights at the Arden Theatre in Philadelphia

Posted by Lia Chang on Tuesday, 12 October 2004.

Arthur T. Acua stars as Shahryar in Mary Zimmerman's adaptation of The Arabian Nights at the Arden Theatre in Philadelphia through Nov. 7.

Arthur Acua returns to the Arden Theatre as Shahryar, the king in The Arabian Nights by Mary Zimmerman through Nov. 7. He appeared in the Arden's acclaimed production of Pacific Overtures last Spring as the Reciter.

Director Terrence J. Nolen shares his inspiration for including The Arabian Nights in the Arden's Fall lineup: "I read Mary's script and thought it was wonderful, incredibly evocative and beautiful - and yet also very, very funny. Many of the stories told in The Arabian Nights are set in ancient Baghdad and I was struck by how little I knew of this profound and remarkable culture. Mary's adaptation celebrates the power of storytelling and I wanted to direct a piece that brings laughter and beauty to our stage."

With her new adaptation of The Arabian Nights ., Mary Zimmerman casts a dazzling spell. For 1,001 nights, Scheherazade weaves beguiling tales of an enchanting and sensual world to save her from death at the hands of a corrupted king.

Kristyn Chouiniere as Scheherezade, Lee Ann Etzold, Sam Henderson, Johnnie Hobbs III, Suli Holum, Dave Jadico, Trey Lyford, Larry Grant Malvern, Alvaro Mendoza, Sheree-Monique Roberts, Shirley Roeca, and Paco Tolson round out the 13-member cast. With sets by James Kronzer, choreography by Myra Bazell, sound by Kevin Francis, costumes by Ana Kuzmanic, and lighting by Dennis Parichy.

Television audiences may be familiar with Arthur Acua with his roles on Law & Order, As the World Turns, Third Watch, Anniversary, and Batang West Side. On the New York stage, his favorite roles have been in Antigone , the Obie award winning production of The Romance of Magno Rubio , Kwatz , Dogeaters, Empress of China, and Yerma. He has just completed filming for two independent feature films: The Blue Hour directed by Francisco Aliwalas and Rogodon (Pilgrim) with directors Keith Sicat and Sari Dalena.

Performance are Tues.-Sun., Nov. 7. Post show discussions follow performances on Sun., Oct. 24 at 2 p.m.; and Sun., Oct. 31 at 2 p.m. College Night is Thurs., Nov. 4 at 8 p.m. and offers $10 tickets to students with valid student ID. A Student matinee is scheduled for Tues., Nov. 2 at 10 a.m. Ticket prices range from $24 to $40. Call the Arden Box Office at 215.922.1122, for ticket info, visit the box office @ 40 N. 2nd Street in Philadelphia, or online at

Arden Theatre Company
F. Otto Haas Stage
40 N. 2nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Stay tuned for Arthur's revealing interview with AsianConnections editor Lia Chang