George Pothitos expects to have a few more butterflies churning through his stomach for the kick-off to the new theatre season.

 

That’s because after months of anticipation, Neptune Theatre’s new artistic director is finally set to unveil the first of his nine shows for the 2009-10 campaign. What’s more, none other than Pothitos himself is directing the season-opener – Marivaux’s The Game of Love and Chance.

 

“It’s a bit of an extra jitter and of course people are waiting to see what George is going to do,” Pothitos said with a laugh inside the popular downtown Halifax theatre yesterday. “I hope they enjoy it. But it’s a bit of an extra little scary moment, I guess.”

 

Pothitos was named Neptune’s new artistic director last October – replacing Ron Ulrich, who moved on to Theatre Aquarius in Hamilton – but only now can the Argentinean native really put his stamp on stage.

 

The 2008-09 line-up was already set when he took over last fall, and Pothitos still had to finish work at Sudbury Theatre Centre, where he was artistic director for nine years.

Pothitos took up full-time residence in Halifax in June, and is excited about the season opener, which tells the story of a wealthy Parisian mademoiselle who dreads the prospects of an arranged marriage and trades identities with her maid prior to the first meeting.

“It’s a comedy and it’s joyous,” he said of the play set in 18th century France. “So I wanted to begin my first season with joy and celebration.”

The rest of the season includes plays such as No Great Mischief, A Christmas Carol, Sexy Laundry, award-winning Rabbit Hole and Peter Pan.

“We’re going to fly through a season of a lot of interesting plays; varied plays,” he said.