Clea Alsip, Ross Bickell, Patch Darragh and More Join Westport Country Playhouse's MARY, MARY Reading; Cast Announced!

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Clea Alsip, Ross Bickell, Patch Darragh and More Join Westport Country Playhouse's MARY, MARY Reading; Cast Announced!

Casting is announced for the Script in Hand playreading of "Mary, Mary," a witty romantic comedy about a marriage gone hilariously awry, at Westport Country Playhouse, on Monday, February 10, 7 p.m. Tickets are $15. The play is written by Jean Kerr and directed by Anne Keefe.

Actors in the comedic story are Clea Alsip (Westport Country Playhouse's "The Show-Off"; Long Wharf Theatre's "The Killing of Sister George"; currently in the New York premiere of Sarah Ruhl's "Stage Kiss") as Tiffany Richards; Ross Bickell (Broadway's "Noises Off," "The Iceman Cometh," "A Few Good Men"; Off-Broadway's "The Crucible"; over 200 regional Theater Productions; film "The Fighter") as Oscar Nelson; Geneva Carr (Westport Country Playhouse's "Relatively Speaking," "Time of My Life," "How the Other Half Loves," and several Script in Hand playreadings; Off-Broadway's "Hand to God") as Mary McKellaway; Patch Darragh (Broadway transfer of Westport Country Playhouse's "Our Town"; Off-Broadway's "The Glass Menagerie"; film "Hope Springs"; recurring roles on "Boardwalk Empire") as Bob McKellaway; and Robert Eli (Westport Country Playhouse's "The Show-Off," and Script in Hand playreading of "Mister Roberts"; Broadway's "Tartuffe"; Long Wharf Theatre and Hartford Stage's "Bell, Book and Candle") as Dirk Winston.

"Mary, Mary" is a comedy about recently divorced Mary and Bob, who meet to sort out some tax matters when a Valentine's Day snowstorm traps them in his apartment with three others: their lawyer, a handsome film hero, and Bob's young and wealthy fiancé.

Playwright Jean Collins Kerr (1923-2003) had a knack for finding wry humor in the worlds of marriage, suburbia, and show business. Her novel "Please Don't Eat the Daisies" (1957) was made into a movie (1960) and a television series (1965-67). Among her plays are "Mary, Mary" (1961), "Poor Richard" (1964), "Finishing Touches" (1973), and "Lunch Hour" (1980). She was the wife of Walter Kerr, Broadway theater critic.

Director Anne Keefe served as artistic director of Westport Country Playhouse with JoAnne Woodward in 2008, and as associate artistic director from 2000-2006, also with Ms. Woodward. She co-directed with Ms. Woodward the Westport Country Playhouse production of "David Copperfield," and directed many Script in Hand playreadings.

Script in Hand sponsors are Marc and Michele Flaster; Script in Hand partners are Ann Sheffer and Bill Scheffler. The series is supported, in part, by the White Barn Program of the Lucille Lortel Foundation.

An upcoming Script in Hand playreading will be the provocative spy thriller, "Pack of Lies" by Hugh Whitemore, on Monday, February 10, 7 p.m. A nice, middle-aged British couple is asked by Scotland Yard to use their house as an observation station to try and foil a Soviet spy ring operating in the area. They are put to the test with the suggestion that the spies may be their neighbors and best friends.

For more information or tickets, call the box office at (203) 227-4177, or toll-free at 1-888-927-7529, or visit Westport Country Playhouse, 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport. Tickets are available online 24/7 at www.westportplayhouse.org. Stay connected to The Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), follow on Twitter (@WCPlayhouse), view Playhouse videos on YouTube (WestportPlayhouse) or get an insider's peek on The Playhouse Blog (www.theplayhouseblog.org).

Westport Country Playhouse, named 2013 Theater Company of the Year by The Wall Street Journal, is a nationally recognized, not-for-profit, professional theater under the artistic direction of Mark Lamos and management leadership of Michael Ross. The Playhouse creates five live theater experiences, produced at the highest level, from April through October. Its vital mix of works---dramatic, comedic, occasionally exploratory and unusual---expands the audience's sense of what theater can be. The depth and scope of its productions display the foremost theatrical literature from the past---recent as well as distant---in addition to musicals and premieres of new plays. During the summer, The Playhouse is home to the Woodward Internship Program, renowned for the training of aspiring theater professionals. Winter at The Playhouse, from November through March, offers events outside of the main season---Family Festivities presentations and Script in Hand play readings. In addition, businesses and organizations are encouraged to rent the handsome facility for their meetings, receptions and fundraisers.

As an historic venue, Westport Country Playhouse has had many different lives leading up to the present. Originally built in 1835 as a tannery manufacturing hatters' leathers, it became a steam-powered cider mill in 1880, later to be abandoned in the 1920s. Splendidly transformed into a theater in 1931, it initially served as a try-out house for Broadway transfers, evolving into an established stop on the New England straw hat circuit of summer stock theaters through the end of the 20th century. Following a multi-million dollar renovation completed in 2005, The Playhouse became a state-of-the-art producing theater, preserving its original charm and character.

Today, the not-for-profit Westport Country Playhouse serves as a cultural resource for patrons, artists and students and is a treasure for the State of Connecticut. There are no boundaries to the creative thinking for future seasons or the kinds of audiences and excitement for theater that Westport Country Playhouse can build.

Westport Country Playhouse's upcoming 2014 season: Noël Coward's "A Song at Twilight," an exquisite battle of wits, exploring the nature of passion, the cruelty of love, and the price of hidden secrets, directed by Mark Lamos, April 29 - May 17, a co-production with Hartford Stage; the season's second production will be either a comedy or a world premiere musical event, to be announced at a later date, directed by Mark Lamos, playing June 3 - 21; "Nora," Ingmar Bergman's adaptation of Henrik Ibsen's "A Doll's House," a story of love, blackmail, and the little lies people tell, translated into the English language by Frederick J. Marker and Lisa-Lone Marker, directed by David Kennedy, Playhouse associate artistic director, July 15 - August 2; "Things We Do for Love," Alan Ayckbourn's wickedly funny play that questions just how sane anyone really is when it comes to love, August 19 - September 6; and "Intimate Apparel" by Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage, an intricate tapestry of the joys, sorrows, tragedy, and triumph of a gifted but lonely African-American seamstress in early 20th century Manhattan who's negotiating the choice between a love that is accepted and one that is true, October 7 - November 1.

For more information or tickets, call the box office at (203) 227-4177, or toll-free at 1-888-927-7529, or visit Westport Country Playhouse, 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport. Tickets are available online 24/7 at www.westportplayhouse.org. Stay connected to The Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), follow on Twitter (@WCPlayhouse), view Playhouse videos on YouTube (WestportPlayhouse) or get an insider's peek on The Playhouse Blog (www.theplayhouseblog.org).

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