Playwrights Horizons Announces Rabe, Booth, Payne & More For 2010/11 Season

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Playwrights Horizons (Tim Sanford, Artistic Director; Leslie Marcus, Managing Director) has announced additional casting for its 2010/2011 40th Anniversary Season.

Lily Rabe (The American Plan, Crimes of the Heart, Steel Magnolias) will headline the World Premiere of KIN, a new play by Bathsheba Doran (Living Room in Africa, her adaptation of Great Expectations at The Lucille Lortel). Directed by Obie Award winner Sam Gold (Annie Baker's Circle Mirror Transformation at Playwrights Horizons and The Aliens at Rattlestick), performances will take place in spring 2011.

In KIN, Anna (Ms. Rabe), a Texan Ivy League poetry scholar, and Sean, an Irish personal trainer, hardly seem destined for one another. But as their web of disparate family and friends crosses great distances - both psychologically and geographically - an unlikely new family is forged. Ms. Doran's play sheds a sharp light on the changing face of kinship in the expansive landscape of the modern world.

In other casting news, Zachary Booth (Prayer for My Enemy at PH, "Damages," Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist), Natalia Payne (New Jerusalem at CSC), Stephen Payne (Superior Donuts and August: Osage County on Broadway; Me, Myself & I at The McCarter) and Preston Sadleir (Off-Broadway debut) complete the cast of the New York premiere of Edward Albee's ME, MYSELF & I, a new play by the three-time Pulitzer Prize and three-time Tony Award winner (A Delicate Balance; Seascape; Three Tall Women; Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; The Goat or, Who Is Sylvia?).

The four will join the previously-announced Tony Award winner Elizabeth Ashley (for Take Her, She's Mine; plus Barefoot in the Park, August: Osage County) and three-time Tony Award nominee Brian Murray (for The Crucible, The Little Foxes and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead; Obie Award for Mr. Albee's The Play About the Baby).

Directed by Tony Award nominee, Obie Award winner and McCarter Theatre Artistic Director Emily Mann (Miss Witherspoon at Playwrights Horizons, Having Our Say, Mr. Albee's All Over), the production was originally presented at McCarter Theatre in January 2008. Mr. Murray will reprise his acclaimed performance from the McCarter production.

Edward Albee's ME, MYSELF & I will open Playwrights Horizons' 40th Anniversary Season, beginning performances August 24, 2010 at Playwrights Horizons' Mainstage Theater (416 West 42nd Street). The production will have its official opening on September 12, 2010. Single tickets, $75, will go on sale Monday, July 19.

In ME, MYSELF & I, Mother (Ms. Ashley) can't tell her identical twins apart. But when Otto (Mr. Booth) announces his brother (Mr. Sadleir) doesn't exist, the household descends into chaos.

ME, MYSELF & I had its World Premiere at McCarter Theatre, opening on January 18, 2008 and playing a limited engagement through February 17, 2008. Ben Brantley in The New York Times hailed the play as, "A laugh-out-loud farce in which the meanings of everyday words split and multiply like amoebas on steroids. Directed by Emily Mann and engagingly acted by a cast that includes the invaluable Albee veteran Brian Murray, it's in the tradition of Mr. Albee's mid- and late- career works like The Marriage Play and The Play About the Baby: fragmented philosophical vaudevilles that turn the most fundamental questions of identity into verbal soft-shoes. It also harks back to his early exercises in absurdism (including the one-acters The Sandbox and The American Dream), coal-black comedies from a time when brash young writers reveled in toppling theatrical traditions."

Mr. Albee will be making his Playwrights Horizons debut with this production. Ms. Mann previously worked with Playwrights Horizons directing Miss Witherspoon (2005). Both Ms. Ashley and Mr. Murray are also returning to the theater company, where she appeared in When She Danced (1990) and he appeared in The Butterfly Collection (2000) and Mud, River, Stone (1997). Mr. Booth previously appeared at Playwrights Horizons in Prayer for My Enemy (2009).

Additional casting for the 2010/2011 Season will be announced in the coming months.

Playwrights Horizons' season productions are generously supported by The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust.

Playwrights Horizons is supported in part by public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New

York State Assembly and the New York State Senate. In addition, Playwrights Horizons receives major support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, Time Warner Inc. and the Charina Endowment Fund.

Guaranteeing tickets for any of this season's plays is currently and only available by purchasing a subscription to Playwrights Horizons. For subscription and ticket information to all Playwrights Horizons productions, call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200, Noon to 8 pm daily, or purchase online at the Playwrights Horizons website at www.playwrightshorizons.org.

BIOGRAPHIES

Lily Rabe (Anna in Kin) is currently appearing in the Shakespeare in the Park production of The Merchant of Venice. Broadway: The American Plan (Manhattan Theatre Club), Heartbreak House (Roundabout Theatre Company; Callaway Award, Outer Critics Circle nomination), Steel Magnolias (Lyceum Theatre; Drama Desk nomination). Off-Broadway: Crimes of the Heart (Roundabout Theatre Company), Colder Than Here (MCC). Regional: The Rivalry (L.A. Theatre Works); Crimes of the Heart (Williamstown); Proof, Crazy Girl, Speaking Well of the Dead (Gloucester Stage Company). Film: All Good Things, Aftermath, What Just Happened, The Toe Tactic, No Reservations, A Crime, Mona Lisa Smile, Never Again. Television: "Last of the Ninth" (HBO), "Nip/Tuck" (FX), "Medium" (NBC), "Law & Order: SVU" (NBC), "Law & Order: CI" (NBC). Graduate: Northwestern University.

Elizabeth Ashley (Mother in Me, Myself & I) previously appeared at Playwrights Horizons in When She Danced in 1990. She most recently appeared on stage in the Broadway production of August: Osage County. She won a Tony Award and Theatre World Award for Take Her, She's Mine and was also Tony-nominated for Barefoot in the Park and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Other Broadway credits include Dividing the Estate (also Off-Broadway, Drama Desk nomination), Enchanted April, The Best Man, The Skin of Our Teeth, Caesar and Cleopatra, Legend and Agnes of God. Film includes The Carpetbaggers, Ship of Fools (Golden Globe nomination) and Happiness (Independent Spirit Award). A few of her many Television credits include "Evening Shade" (Emmy nomination), "The Rope" (Cable ACE nomination) and "The Two Mrs. Grenvilles." Recording: Lou Reed's The Raven. She's a founding member and on the Board of Directors of the American Film Institute. Author: Actress: Postcards From the Road.

Zachary Booth (OTTO in Me, Myself & I). Playwrights Horizons: Prayer for My Enemy. Off-Broadway: Victoria Martin: Math Team Queen (Women's Project); Trojan Horse (First Look Theatre); Spine, Pentecost (Barrow Group). Film: White Irish Drinkers, The Beaver, Taking Woodstock, Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, Assassination of a High School President. TV: "Damages" (recurring role as Michael Hewes), "Law & Order: SVU," "New Amsterdam," "What Goes On." BFA, University of Michigan.

Brian Murray (Dr. in Me, Myself & I) previously appeared at Playwrights Horizons in The Butterfly Collection in 2000 and Mud, River, Stone in 1997. He most recently appeared on stage in the Broadway production of Mary Stuart. He's been nominated for three Tony Awards for The Crucible, The Little Foxes and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, and other Broadway credits include The Rivals, Uncle Vanya, Twelfth Night, Racing Demon, Noises Off, Black Comedy, Sleuth, King Lear and Da. A leading Edward Albee interpreter, he has appeared Off-Broadway in Albee's The Play About the Baby (Obie) and Beckett/Albee. Other Off-Broadway: Scattergood, The Entertainer, Travels with My Aunt, Ashes (Obie), Hamlet, Much Ado About Nothing, Gaslight, Entertaining Mr. Sloan. Film/Television credits include Bob Roberts, Treasure Planet, "Hamlet" and "Twelfth Night." Also a distinguished director, his Broadway directing credits include Hay Fever, Arsenic and Old Lace, Blithe Spirit and The Circle.

Natalia Payne (Maureen in Me, Myself & I). New York: Jailbait (Cherry Lane Theatre), New Jerusalem (Classic Stage), Aliens with Extraordinary Skills (Women's Project), Novel (SPF), Armed and Naked in America (Naked Angels). Regional: Memory House (Vineyard Playhouse), Trouble in Mind (Yale Repertory), Last Train to Nibroc (Milbrook Playhouse). TV/film: "Law & Order: SVU," The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond. BA, Yale University.

Stephen Payne (The Charioteer in Me, Myself & I) previously appeared in the premiere of Edward Albee's Me, Myself & I at the McCarter Theatre with Brian Murray. Broadway: Superior Donuts, August: Osage County. Other premieres: J.P. Shanley's Sailor's Song (Public), A Clockwork Orange (Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam), Wings of Desire (Amsterdam/A.R.T.), Midsummer Night's Dream (McCarter; Paper Mill), Bus Stop (Old Globe; San Diego Theatre Critics Circle Award), among others. Film/TV include: Shoot First and Pray You Live, The Cake Eaters, "The Sopranos," "Law & Order," "Third Watch."

Preston Sadleir (otto in Me, Myself & I). Off-Broadway debut. He recently appeared as Noah in the Playwrights Horizons reading of Mrs. Sharp alongside Jane Krakowski, as well as in the workshop of the newly-revised version of the infamous Broadway musical Carrie. Theatre: Give It Up! (Dallas Theatre Center); Footloose, Thoroughly Modern Millie (Hale Center Theater); You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, Smokey Joe's Cafe (Pardoe Theater). Preston has also toured internationally and released two albums with the European pop-group T-Minus Friday.

Playwrights Horizons, under the leadership of Artistic Director Tim Sanford and Managing Director Leslie Marcus, is a writer's theater dedicated to the support and development of contemporary American Playwrights, composers and lyricists, and to the production of their new work. Heading into its 40th Anniversary Season, Playwrights Horizons has presented the work of more than 375 writers and has received numerous awards and honors, including a special 2008 Drama Desk Award for "ongoing support to generations of theater artists and undiminished commitment to producing new work." Notable productions include four Pulitzer Prize winners: Doug Wright's I Am My Own Wife (2004 Tony Award, Best Play), Wendy Wasserstein's The Heidi Chronicles (1989 Tony Award, Best Play), Alfred Uhry's Driving Miss Daisy and Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Sunday in the Park with George, as well as Annie Baker's Circle Mirror Transformation (three 2010 Obie Awards including Best New American Play), Bruce Norris' Clybourne Park, Melissa James Gibson's This (2010 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist), Doug Wright, Scott Frankel and Michael Korie's Grey Gardens (three 2007 Tony Awards), Craig Lucas's Prayer For My Enemy and Small Tragedy (2004 Obie Award, Best American Play), Adam Rapp's Kindness, Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's Assassins, Sarah Ruhl's Dead Man's Cell Phone, Bruce Norris's The Pain and the Itch, Lynn Nottage's Fabulation (2005 Obie Award for Playwriting), Kenneth Lonergan's Lobby Hero, David Greenspan's She Stoops to Comedy (2003 Obie Award), Kirsten Childs's The Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin (2000 Obie Award), Richard Nelson and Shaun Davey's James Joyce's The Dead, William Finn's March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland, Christopher Durang's Betty's Summer Vacation and Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All For You, Richard Nelson's Goodnight Children Everywhere and Franny's Way, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty's Once on This Island, Jon Robin Baitz's The Substance of Fire, Scott McPherson's Marvin's Room, A.R. Gurney's Later Life, Adam Guettel and Tina Landau's Floyd Collins and Jeanine Tesori and Brian Crawley's Violet.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride/Retna Ltd.

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