Geva Closes 2013-14 Mainstage Season with Neil Simon's THE ODD COUPLE, 4/22-5/18
Geva Theatre Center' 41st Mainstage Season concludes with Neil Simon's The Odd Couple. Directed by John Miller-Stephany, and with a cast led by Tony Award- winner Michael McGrath and Broadway veteran Noah Racey, this classic comedy begins performances on April 22 and runs in the Elaine P. Wilson Mainstage through May 18.
One of Neil Simon's most recognizable and timeless comedies. Fastidious Felix Unger is thrown out by his wife. His only refuge is with his best friend, Oscar Madison, a recently divorced sportswriter whose apartment is a study in slovenly chaos. Friends, yes, but will they drive each other crazy?! This peculiar pair, with decidedly different approaches to life, to love - and yes, to housework, has been entertaining audiences with side-splitting laughter and classic comedy for nearly 50 years.
Neil Simon has been represented on Broadway by Come Blow Your Horn; Little Me; Barefoot in the Park; The Odd Couple; Sweet Charity; The Star-Spangled Girl; Plaza Suite; Promises, Promises; Last of the Red Hot Lovers; The Gingerbread Lady; The Prisoner of Second Avenue; The Sunshine Boys; The Good Doctor; God's Favorite; California Suite; Chapter Two; They're Playing our Song; I Ought to Be in Pictures; Fools; Brighton Beach Memoirs; Biloxi Blues (1985 Tony Award); the female version of The Odd Couple; Broadway Bound; Rumors; Lost in Yonkers (1991 Pulitzer Prize; Tony Award); Jake's Women; The Goodbye Girl; Laughter on the 23rd Floor; Proposals; The Dinner Party and 45 Seconds from Broadway. London Suite was produced Off-Broadway. His films include Barefoot in the Park, The Odd Couple, The Out-of-Towners, Plaza Suite, The Heartbreak Kid, The Prisoner of Second Avenue, Murder by Death, The Sunshine Boys, The Goodbye Girl, The Cheap Detective, California Suite, Chapter Two, Seems Like Old Times, Only When I Laugh, I Ought to Be in Pictures, Max Dugan Returns, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Biloxi Blues and Lost in Yonkers.
The Odd Couple premiered at Broadway's Plymouth Theatre in March of 1965. It transferred to the Eugene O'Neill Theatre where it ran for 964 performances. Directed by Mike Nichols and starring Walter Matthau as Oscar Madison and Art Carney as Felix Ungar, the production won four Tony Awards and was nominated for Best Play. Neil Simon sold the film rights to Paramount Pictures in 1967 and the following year The Odd Couple was released as a major motion picture starring Walter Matthau, reprising his role of Oscar, and Jack Lemmon as Felix. Simon was nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay. The success of the film spawned a five-season television series (1970-1975) for ABC starring Tony Randall as Felix and Jack Klugman as Oscar. (Klugman had replaced Matthau in the original Broadway run.) A 1993, made-for-TV film reunited Randall and Klugman and was broadcast on CBS. In 1998, Lemmon and Matthau reprised their roles for the film The Odd Couple II, which was produced by Simon. The Odd Couple is about to be introduced to a whole new generation. In December 2013, it was announced the Matthew Perry (of "Friends" fame) was starring, co-writing and executive producing a remake of "The Odd Couple." This series is due to air sometime this year on CBS. Perry will star as Oscar and Thomas Lennon as Felix.
Geva's production of The Odd Couple stars Broadway veterans Michael McGrath as Oscar Madison and Noah Racey as Felix Ungar. Mr. McGrath was last seen on Broadway where he created the role of Cookie McGee in Nice Work if You Can Get It, for which he received the Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards. Other Broadway credits include Born Yesterday, Memphis, Spamalot (for which he received Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations), Wonderful Town, The Goodbye Girl and My Favorite Year. Mr. Racey's Broadway credits include the world premiere and original Broadway cast of Kander and Ebb's Curtains, Never Gonna Dance, Thoroughly Modern Millie and Follies. His staging will be seen on Broadway next season in It Shoulda Been You, starring Tyne Daly and directed by David Hyde Pierce.
Jennifer Cody and Erin Lindsey Krom appear as Gwendolyn and Cecily Pigeon. Ms Cody is thrilled to return home to Rochester for this production and Broadway credits include A Christmas Story, Shrek, The Pajama Game, Taboo, Urinetown the Musical, Beauty and the Beast and Cats. Ms. Cody created the voice of Charlotte La Boeuff in Disney's The Princess and the Frog and is the voice of Darcy in Nickelodeon's "Winx Club" and Lucy in "Robot and Monster." Ms. Krom makes her Geva Theatre Center debut. Originally from Pittsburgh, but now residing in New York, Ms. Krom has appeared in theatres around the country and in feature films including M. Night Shyamalan's The Last Airbender, HBO's Mildred Pierce (with Kate Winslet) and Columbia Pictures' Men in Black 3.
Brian D. Coats (Geva productions of Fences and A Raisin in the Sun), Drew Hirshfield (TV's "Blue Bloods" and "Lucy Knows Love"), Patrick Noonan (Geva productions of Almost, Maine and On Golden Pond), and Robert Rutland (Geva productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream, You Can't Take It With You, Amadeus, Pride and Prejudice, and more) play Oscar Madison's poker playing buddies Speed, Vinnie, Murray and Roy.
The Odd Couple is directed by John Miller-Stephany, Associate Artistic Director of the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis (and a Rochester native). The design team includes John Coyne (scenic design), Pamela Scofield (costume design), Matthew Reinert (lighting design), and Dan Roach (sound design).
Lead Co-Producer of The Odd Couple is St. John Fisher College. Additional support is provided by Key Bank, The Pike Company & LECESSE Construction. Honorary Producers are Dawn and Jacques Lipson, M.D. News10NBC and WARM 101.3 are the media sponsors.
Pictured: Michael McGrath as Oscar and Noah Racey as Felix. Photo by Ken Huth.