CHEKHOV'S UNCLE VANYA Extends at SoHo Rep Thru 8/26
In response to overwhelming demand, amid extraordinary critical acclaim, Soho Rep, in association with John Adrian Selzer, extends the world premiere of CHEKHOV'S UNCLE VANYA-the new version by playwright Annie Baker, directed by Sam Gold-through August 26. These additional five weeks constitute the second extension of the run; the initial six weeks and the first extension (through July 22), announced before the show opened, are sold out.
Performances in the new extension will take place Tuesdays-Sundays at 7:30 P.M., and Saturdays at 2:00 P.M. at Soho Rep (46 Walker Street). Tickets are $50-55 for regular, $75 for premium, ($20 student rush) and can be purchased by visiting www.sohorep.org or calling 212.352.3101.
Critics have deemed the production a must-see. Charles Isherwood of The New York Times calls it "one of the summer's hot tickets," and considers Reed Birney's performance as the title character, "as vitally moving a Vanya as I've yet to see." The cover of last week's Time Out NY refers to the production as "the ticket to book now," and critic David Cote's five-star review says, "Baker's new version of Uncle Vanya finds fresh pockets of rawness and disorientation in the classic, wrapped in a wholly absorbing, intimate setting by director Sam Gold and acted by a superb cast." In The Village Voice, Jacob Gallagher-Ross calls the show "devastatingly beautiful," and urges, "Go see it. People are going to be talking about this one for years."
Variety critic Marilyn Stasio says Baker's version of Chekhov's classic "is more than a modern-dress treatment of a classic work. It's a fresh rethinking of the material from the perspective of a modern mind," and adds, "under Sam Gold's clear-as-a-bell helming, a remarkable ensemble…breathes new life into Chekhov's familiar characters." Brian Scott Lipton of Theatermania credits Baker's translation with "eliminating any distance we might feel from these universal characters first created over 100 years ago, but recognizable to - and in - each one of us." In Backstage, Andy Propst praises the production's "top-notch cast" and the "marvelously pitched performance by Reed Birney."
Chekhov's Uncle Vanya reunites Baker and Gold, whose previous collaborations include The Aliens and Circle Mirror Transformation. In addition to Reed Birney (Blasted at Soho Rep, Circle Mirror Transformation at Playwrights Horizons, Dreams of Flying Dreams of Falling at the Atlantic) as Vanya, the world premiere features Peter Friedman (Circle Mirror Transformation and After the Revolution at Playwrights Horizons, Twelve Angry Men on Broadway, Tony Award nomination for Ragtime) as Serebryakov, a retired professor; Maria Dizzia (Tony Award nominee for In the Next Room…, Eurydice at Second Stage; Film: Martha Marcy May Marlene) as Yelena, his wife; Merritt Wever (The Illusion at The Signature Theatre, Touch(ed) at Williamstown Theatre Festival; TV: Nurse Jackie) as Sonya, his daughter from his first marriage; Rebecca Schull (TV: Wings; Film: Little Children, Analyze This) as Maria, mother of Vanya and the professor's first wife; Michael Shannon (Bug, Our Town and Mistakes Were Made at Barrow Street; Film: Academy Award nominee for Revolutionary Road, Take Shelter, TV: Boardwalk Empire) as Astrov, a doctor; Matthew Maher (Orange, Hat & Grace and LEAR at Soho Rep, A Doll's House at Williamstown Theatre Festival; Film: It's Kind of a Funny Story)as Telegin, an impoverished landowner; Paul Thureen (Buddy Cop 2 and Cape Disappointment with The Debate Society) as Yefim, a hired man/night watchman; and Georgia Engel (TV: The Mary Tyler Moore Show; Middletown at the Vineyard, The Drowsy Chaperone on Broadway) as Marina, an old nanny.
The production features set design by Andrew Lieberman, costume design by Baker, lighting design by Mark Barton, sound design by Matt Tierney and fight direction by Thomas Schall. For her version of the play, Baker worked off a literal translation by Margarita Shalina, trying to unearth the grammar and colloquialisms omitted in existing English translations.
FEED Post-Performance Programming
Through its FEED program, which offers post-performance events aimed at enriching the audience's experience of the work on stage, Soho Rep will offer several events during the run of Uncle Vanya. The FEED programming includes a "Chekhov and Me" series, in which, after the show, a luminary from theater or the humanities will reflect on the writer's work and legacy. Upcoming participants include Siddhartha Mukharjee of Columbia University, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his book The Emperor of All Maladies; and Tanya Saracho, playwright and adaptor of The Cherry Orchard (El Nogalar, set on an avocado farm in Mexico). Featured speakers are subject to change. Among those featured to date are actress Olympia Dukakis; Sarah Ruhl, the playwright and adaptor of Three Sisters; The New Yorker theater critic Hilton Als; and Alison Horsley, dramaturg, former Literary Manager of La Jolla Playhouse and literal translator of Chekhov plays for Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
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About the Uncle Vanya Creative Team
Annie Baker (Adaptor / Translator / Costume Designer)
Baker's full-length plays include Circle Mirror Transformation (Playwrights Horizons, OBIE Award for Best New American Play, Drama Desk nomination for Best Play), The Aliens (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, OBIE Award for Best New American Play) and Body Awareness (Atlantic Theater Company, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle nominations for Best Play/Emerging Playwright). Her plays have been produced outside of NYC at South Coast Rep, the Guthrie, Victory Gardens, Artists Rep, Huntington Theater Company, Seattle Rep, Studio Theatre in DC, Hyde Park Theatre, and the San Francisco Playhouse, and performed internationally in England, Australia, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Peru, Venezuela, Mexico, Latvia, and Russia. Baker is a member of New Dramatists and the MCC Playwrights Coalition, and she is a Residency Five Playwright at the new Signature Theatre Center. Recent honors include a United States Artists Collins Fellowship, New York Drama Critics Circle Award, Lilly Award, Time Warner Storytelling Fellowship and Master Artist Residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts. An anthology of her work, The Vermont Plays, will be published by TCG in April 2012, and Playwrights Horizons will produce her newest play, The Flick, in 2013.
Sam Gold (Director)
Gold's previous collaborations with Annie Baker include her plays The Aliens (Rattlestick) and Circle Mirror Transformation (Playwrights Horizons), for which he received a Drama Desk nomination and an OBIE Award in 2010 for Outstanding Direction. Broadway: Seminar by Theresa Rebeck (Golden Theater). Other recent credits: The Big Meal by Dan Lefranc (Playwrights Horizons, Lortel Award for Outstanding Direction); Look Back in Anger by John Osborne (Roundabout); We Live Here by Zoe Kazan(Manhattan Theater Club); A Doll's House by Ibsen (Williamstown Theatre Festival); August: Osage County by Tracy Letts (Old Globe, SD Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Direction); Kin by Bathsheba Doran (Playwrights Horizons); The Coward by Nick Jones (Lincoln Center's LCT3); Tigers be Still by Kim Rosenstock (Roundabout); Dusk Rings a Bell by Steven Belber (Atlantic); Jollyship the Whiz-Bang by Nick Jones (Ars Nova & Under the Radar Festival); Rag and Bone by Noah Haidle (Rattlestick); The Joke by Sam Marks (Studio Dante); and The Black Eyed by Betty Shamieh (NYTW). Gold was the Dramaturg at The Wooster Group from 2003-2006. He is a Roundabout Associate Artist, NYTW Usual Suspect, Drama League Directing Fellow, recipient of the Princess Grace Award, The Garson Kanin/Marian Seldes Theater Hall of Fame Fellowship, and a graduate of the Juilliard Directing Program.
Andrew Lieberman (Set Designer)
Lieberman's opera and theater designs have been seen at English National Opera, Deutsche Oper Berlin, New York City Opera, Montreal Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Spoleto Festival USA, Australian Opera, Long Beach Opera, Portland Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Gotham Opera, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Austin Lyric Opera, The Curtis Institute, The Royal Shakespeare Company, Second Stage, The Public Theater, Bard Summerscape, The Children's Theater Company, Baltimore's Centerstage, McCarter Theater, La Jolla Playhouse, Denver Center, Huntington Theater, Long Wharf Theater, Portland Center Stage, Santa Fe Stages, Actor's Theater of Louisville, Indiana Repertory, Syracuse Stage, The Juilliard School, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, Wilma Theater, and California Shakespeare, among others. He was also part of the creative team responsible for Partenope, winner of the 2009 Lawrence Olivier Award for Best New Opera Production & 2010 Australian Helpmann Award for Best Opera. Andrew is a Princess Grace USA Fabergé Theater Award Winner. He is an Associate Arts Professor and Head of Set Design at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.
Mark Barton (Lighting Designer)
Barton's Off-Broadway credtits include Look Back in Anger (Roundabout); Elective Affinities (Soho Rep); The Select (The Sun Also Rises), The Sound and the Fury (April Seventh, 1928) (Elevator Repair Service/New York Theater Workshop); Gatz (ERS/Public); Titus Andronicus, February House (Public); The Patsy/Jonas (Transport Group); Notes from the Underground, Chair (Theater for a New Audience); Circle Mirror Transformation, The Big Meal (Playwrights Horizons); THE SHIPMENT, CHURCH (Young Jean Lee's Theater Company); Paradise Park (Signature); No Child… (Epic Theater Ensemble/Barrow Street). Other New York includes: New Georges; Clubbed Thumb; Target Margin; P.S.122. Regional: A.R.T.; La Jolla Playhouse; Yale Rep; Perseverance Theater; Long Wharf; South Coast Rep; Berkeley Rep; LA Theater Center/Kirk Douglas Theater; Syracuse Stage; Asolo Rep. Many productions with Curtis Opera Theater, Philadelphia. Mark received a 2012 OBIE Award for Sustained Excellence in Lighting Design.
Matt Tierney (Sound Designer)
Tierney's recent work includes Kin, This (Playwrights Horizons); That Face (MTC); The Ugly One, Elective Affinities, Blasted (Soho Rep, Hewes Award, 2009). With Elevator Repair Service: The Select (The Sun Also Rises) (NYTW, OBIE and Lortel Awards for Sound Design, 2012), The Sound and the Fury (April Seventh, 1928) (NYTW, Lortel Nomination, 2009). Other credits: NYTW, A.R.T., Alley Theater, Woolly Mammoth, BAM, Center Theatre Group, Soho Rep, Ridge Theater (including Decasia; Jennie Richee, OBIE, 2001). Tierney is a former associate artist of The Wooster Group: Hamlet (The Public Theater; Lortel Nom., 2008), There is Still Time Brother, Who's Your Dada?! (MOMA),The Emperor Jones. With Young Jean Lee's Theater Company: Lear, The Shipment, Church.
Thomas Schall (Fight Direction)
Thomas Schall's Broadway work includes: Death of a Salesman, War Horse, Venus in Fur, The Lyons, House of Blue Leaves, A Free Man of Color, Merchant of Venice, A View from the Bridge, After Miss Julie, Mary Stuart, Waiting for Godot, The Seafarer, Coram Boy, Journey's End, The Woman in White, Wicked, Noises Off. Off-Broadway: King Lear, Titus Andronicus, Mother Courage, Hamlet, Why Torture is Wrong…(Public Theater); Blood and Gifts, Bernarda Alba, Dessa Rosa, Belle Epoque, A Man of No Importance (Lincoln Center); Look Back in Anger (Roundabout); Ruined (MTC); The Price (MCC); Homebody / Kabul (BAM).
About Soho Rep
Founded in 1975, and in its theater on Walker Street since 1991, Soho Rep has built an outstanding reputation for being at the forefront of new and innovative theatre, serving as a vital center for Contemporary Theatre artists.
Soho Rep is now in its 35th Anniversary year. Soho Rep is dedicated to cultivating and producing visionary, uncompromising, and exuberant new plays. They perform to one of the youngest adult audiences in New York City, with over three-quarters aged 18-40.
Critics continue to herald Soho Rep as the go-to theatre destination for new and original works. New York Magazine has said, "this indispensable theater offers more excitement per chair than any space in town," Time Out New York says, "Soho Rep is the best theater in NYC (official)," Variety exclaims "[Soho Rep] has claimed an increasingly vital spot...the venue has suddenly become one to watch for Manhattan theatergoers starved for new work," and The New York Times declares Soho Rep to be "The downtown powerhouse... regularly outclasses the work done on many of the city's larger stages."
Over the last decade, Soho Rep productions have garnered thirteen OBIE Awards; six Drama Desk nominations, Two Kesselring Awards for Melissa James Gibson and Mark Schultz and The New York Times Outstanding Playwriting Award for Dan LeFranc's Sixty Miles To Silverlake. In recent years, Soho Rep has presented plays by established and emerging theatre artists such as Richard Maxwell, Sarah Kane, Daniel Alexander Jones, Debbie Tucker Green, Mac Wellman, Young Jean Lee and Nature Theater of Oklahoma.