SpeakEasy Stage Company to Present OTHER DESERT CITIES, 1/11-2/9

It's the story of a family where secrets are currency and everyone is rich. From January 11 through February 9, 2013, SpeakEasy Stage will proudly present the New England Premiere of the award-winning drama OTHER DESERT CITIES by Jon Robin Baitz.

OTHER DESERT CITIES tells the story of Brooke Wyeth, a once promising young novelist, who returns home after a six-year absence to celebrate Christmas in Palm Springs with her brother, aunt, and parents, the latter of whom are former members of Reagan's inner circle. The festivities are short-lived, however, when Brooke announces that she is about to publish a memoir dredging up a pivotal and tragic event in the family's history - a wound that her parents do not want reopened.

The play is the latest from Jon Robin Baitz, whose previous works include Mizlansky/Zilansky or "schmucks"; The Film Society; The Substance of Fire; The End of the Day; Three Hotels; A Fair Country (Pulitzer Prize finalist 1996); (an adaptation of) Hedda Gabler; Ten Unknowns; and The Paris Letter. Mr. Baitz also created the ABC television series "Brothers & Sisters," which starred Sally Field as the matriarch of a California wine family.

Scott Edmiston will direct this New England Premiere production of OTHER DESERT CITIES for SpeakEasy. Mr. Edmiston has directed over 50 plays in the Boston area and has received numerous awards for his achievements, including three Elliot Norton Awards, two IRNE Awards, the 2005 StageSource Award, and the 2011 Norton Prize for Sustained Excellence in Boston Theatre.

Nancy E. Carroll, Anne Gottlieb, Munson Hicks, Karen MacDonald, and Christopher M. Smith make up the cast.

The design team includes Janie E. Howland (scenic); Charles Schoonmaker (costumes); Karen Perlow (lighting) and Dewey Dellay (original music/sound). Katie Ailinger is the Production Stage Manager.

OTHER DESERT CITIES will play for five weeks only, from January 11 through February 9, in the Virginia Wimberly Theatre in the Stanford Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, 527 Tremont Street in Boston's South End.

Tickets start at $25, with discounts for students, seniors and persons age 25 and under. To buy tickets or for more information, the public is invited to call 617-933-8600 or visit www.SpeakEasyStage.com.

OTHER DESERT CITIES, originally titled Love and Mercy, had its world premiere at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City on December 16, 2010, and officially opened its limited engagement on January 13, 2011. The production was directed by Joe Mantello, and featured Elizabeth Marvel as Brooke, Stockard Channing as Polly, Stacy Keach as Lyman, Linda Lavin as Silda, and Thomas Sadoski as Trip. The play ended its run as scheduled on Feb. 27, 2011, and was later named Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play by the Outer Critics Circle.

On October 12, 2011, the play re-opened on Broadway at the Booth Theater, with Rachel Griffiths taking over the role of Brooke Wyeth and Judith Light assuming the role of Silda. This production received five 2012 Tony Award nominations, including Best Play; Best Actress in a Play (Stockard Channing); Best Featured Actress in a Play (Judith Light); Best Scenic Design (John Lee Beatty); and Best Lighting Design (Kenneth Posner). Judith Light won for Best Featured Actress in a Play.

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