Westport Country Playhouse to Present ROOM SERVICE, 10/8-27
Westport Country Playhouse will stage the madcap American comedy, "Room Service," about a producer and his ragtag bunch of cohorts who try to raise money for a Broadway show as they scramble to evade their hotel bill, written by John Murray and Allen Boretz, directed by Mark Lamos, October 8 - 27.
"The freshness and combustible energy of 'Room Service' is a testament to the brilliance of the craftsmen who created it many decades ago," said Lamos. "The sheer energy and muscularity of the writing, its speed and pacing, the way it tells its crazy but classic story-- all these aspects of the play astonish me. Not many American plays of the 1930s, especially comic ones, still feel so vibrantly alive, or so real, so immediate."
Set in a second-rate Times Square hotel room, "Room Service" tells of Gordon Miller, who has finally discovered a formula for Broadway success: be bold, brash, and option a brilliant script by a promising young writer. What he hasn't discovered is a willing financial backer. As behind-the-scenes business of putting on a play becomes more frenetic, one wonders if the show will ever go on. The play was adapted into a 1938 movie with the Marx Brothers and Lucille Ball.
The "Room Service" cast includes David Beach (Broadway's "Mamma Mia!," "Urinetown," "Moon Over Buffalo") as Joseph Gribble; Jim Bracchitta (Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional theater, TV, film, radio/TV commercials) as Harry Binion; Eric Bryant (New York's "Angels in America"; "Almost, Maine - CT Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Ensemble) as Leo David; Donald Corren (Westport Country Playhouse's "Souvenir," and more; Broadway's "Souvenir," "Torch Song Trilogy") as Dr. Glass; Michael McCormick (Westport Country Playhouse' "She Loves Me"; Broadway's "Chaplin," "Curtains," "Kiss, Me Kate") as Gregory Wagner; Richard Ruiz (Off-Broadway's "Two Gentlemen of Verona"; National Tours of "Sweet Charity," "Urinetown") as Faker Englund; Ben Steinfeld (Broadway's "Cyrano de Bergerac, "Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson") as Gordon Miller; Hayley Treider (New York's "Double Falsehood," "The Best of Everything," "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer") as Hilda Manney; Frank Vlastnik (Westport Country Playhouse's Kander and Ebb's "All About Us"; Broadway's "Big") as Bank Messenger/Simon Jenkins/Timothy Hogarth; Peter Von Berg (Off-Broadway's "Uncle Vanya," "Romeo and Juliet"; film "Cast Away") as Sasha Smirnoff/Senator Blake; and Zoë Winters (Off-Broadway's "4000 Miles," "Love Song"; Regional's "The Imaginary Invalid" - Footlight Award) as Christine Marlowe.
Playwrights John Murray and Allen Boretz were best known for writing the 1937 play "Room Service," which ran for 500 performances on Broadway, starring Sam Levene, Eddie Albert, and Betty Field, and directed by George Abbott. Jack Lemmon starred in a 1953 revival of the play. It was turned into two films: "Room Service," starring the Marx Brothers, and "Step Lively," starring Frank Sinatra. Murray wrote songs and sketches for the "Ziegfeld Follies" and "Alive and Kicking," for the Eddie Cantor radio show, and eventually turned to writing for television. Boretz wrote other plays including "Off to Buffalo" with Max Liebman, and was the songwriter for several Broadway musicals, including "The Garrick Gaieties."