Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart Star in Broadway-Bound NO MAN'S LAND at Berkeley Rep, Now thru 8/31
Tony Taccone informed the guests that legendary actors Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart will perform at Berkeley Rep in a pre-Broadway engagement of No Man's Land. Award-winning director Sean Mathias stages Harold Pinter's masterwork in the Roda Theatre for an exclusive and strictly limited run in August.
No Man's Land plays only 34 performances at Berkeley Rep. It starts previews tonight, August 3, opens on August 11, and plays until August 31. Tickets are on sale now to Berkeley Rep's donors and subscribers to its 2013-14 season; the public can access seats beginning on May 19.
"It is a great honor to welcome these gentlemen to our stage," Tony Taccone says. "I'm sure audiences will be as excited as I am to see these spectacular actors and their eminent director take on such a formidable script. I'm enormously proud that Berkeley Rep has developed a reputation as a supportive place where artists of this caliber can share their newest ambitious work with our audience."
"I have many reasons, professional and personal, to care about San Francisco," Ian McKellen remarks. "I was last there with The National Theatre's Richard III, when I lodged with Armistead Maupin and his partner. As Magneto, I bestrode the Golden Gate Bridge and flew it to Alcatraz. It's high time I playEd Berkeley Rep, and I'm so pleased to be doing that at last in No Man's Land (my first professional Pinter) and in such distinguished company." Patrick Stewart agrees: "I am delighted to be performing at Berkeley Rep and look forward to living in and discovering the city and its surroundings."
"How thrilling to direct my first Pinter play and to do that for Berkeley Rep," adds Sean Mathias. "I have always felt an affinity for San Francisco and its cultural values, and I know how important the theatre is to you in this part of the world. I am delighted to come and discover the delights of Pinter with the Berkeley Rep audience. I am sure the great author and his No Man's Land will seduce us all."
"The influence of Mr. Pinter, whose masterworks include The Homecoming (1964) and No Man's Land (1974), cannot be underestimated," asserts the New York Times. "He was rightly perceived to be the heir to Samuel Beckett, who was his friend and mentor. Like Beckett, Mr. Pinter created worlds profoundly comic and tragic, in which meaning is never fixed, memory lies and people are betrayed not just by one another but also by their own minds."
In No Man's Land, we wonder if two writers really know each other. Or are they performing an elaborate charade? The ambiguity - and the comedy - intensify with the arrival of two other men, drawing the audience into a place between the present and time remembered, between reality and fantasy. Since its premiere in 1975 and its acclaimed London revival in 2008, No Man's Land has been hailed as one of Pinter's "indisputable modern classics" (Telegraph). Now these terrific actors take on this towering drama, first for Berkeley Rep audiences and then on Broadway, where it will be performed in repertory with Waiting for Godot.
The Guardian says, "The play is a masterly summation of all the themes that have long obsessed Pinter: the fallibility of memory, the co-existence in one man of brute strength and sensitivity, the ultimate unknowability of women, the notion that all human contact is a battle between who and whom. It is in no sense a dry, mannerist work but a living, theatrical experience full of rich comedy in which one speech constantly undercuts another."