Susan Sullivan & David Selby to Star in A DELICATE BALANCE at Odyssey Theatre, 4/26-6/15
Two-time Emmy and Golden Globe nominee Susan Sullivan (Castle, Dharma & Greg, Falcon Crest) and David Selby (Dark Shadows, Falcon Crest) head the cast when Robin Larsen directs A Delicate Balance by Edward Albee, opening April 26 at the Odyssey Theatre.
A caustically funny and moving exploration of the bonds of friendship and family in a threatening world, A Delicate Balance is considered by many to be Edward Albee's most challenging work. The first of his three Pulitzer Prize-winning plays, it is stylish, daring and profoundly touching - full of memorable Albee bits, bountiful bursts of colorful invective and lacerating repartee.
Empty nesters Agnes (Sullivan) and Tobias (Selby) share their upper middle class suburban home with their permanent houseguest - Agnes' tartly entertaining and perpetually soused sister, Claire (O-Lan Jones). The household's precarious equilibrium is disrupted one evening by the appearance of lifelong family friends Harry (Mark Costello) and Edna (Lily Knight), who are seeking refuge from an unnamed terror. When daughter Julia (Deborah Puette) returns home in the throes of the breakup of her fourth marriage, she finds her room occupied by Harry and Edna, who refuse to leave.
"Albee is concerned with the human condition," says Larsen. "That existential dread that we all deal with on a daily basis. Human relationships are so tenuous, even those with our closest family and friends - at the end of the day, we are alone. A Delicate Balance explores the unsettling side of what it means to be human."
Best known for his first full-length play Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Albee's early one-acts, including The Zoo Story, established him as a critic of American values. In addition to A Delicate Balance, Albee received Pulitzer Prizes for Seascape and Three Tall Women. Recipient of a 2005 Lifetime Achievement Tony Award and many other awards over the years, Albee has been called "America's greatest living playwright" - and the playwright himself has caustically replied that all the others are dead.
Robin Larsen's directing credits include Mrs. Warren's Profession at Antaeus; the L.A. premiere of David Harrower's Blackbird for Rogue Machine (LADCC nomination, Best Production; five "Best of 2011" lists including the Los Angeles Times and LA Weekly); the world premiere of Pursued By Happiness by Keith Huff at the Road Theatre Company (Los Angeles Times "Critic's Choice"); and the West Coast premiere of The Fall To Earth by Joel Drake Johnson, starring JoBeth Williams, at the Odyssey (LADCC Nomination, Huffington Post "2012 Top Los Angeles Theater Productions"). Robin's West Coast premiere of Four Places, also by Joel Johnson, at Rogue Machine was one of the most lauded plays of the 2010 L.A. theater season, winning Ovation, LADCC and Backstage Garland awards for Best Production. For the Black Dahlia Theatre, Robin directed the West Coast premiere of Tryst (five Ovation Award nominations including Best Production and Best Director, three LA Weekly Awards including Best Play, and two Backstage Garland Awards including Best Director) and the L.A. premiere of David Schulner's An Infinite Ache (Los Angeles Times "Critic's Choice"). Robin is an Academy Award-winning filmmaker whose work has screened at festivals around the world. Her web series Sex & Marriage, created with playwright John Pollono, can be seen on Justin Lin's YouTube network YOMYOMF.
Set design for A Delicate Balance is by Tom Buderwitz; lighting design is by Leigh Allen; sound design is by Christopher Moscatiello; costume design is by Dianne K. Graebner; dramaturg is Christopher Breyer; and assistant director is Miranda Stewart.
Performances of A Delicate Balance take place on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m., April 26 through June 15. On Sunday, April 27 only, the performance will be at 5 p.m. with no 2 p.m. matinee. Additional weeknight performances are scheduled on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on May 21 and June 4; and on Thursdays at 8 p.m. on May 8, May 15, May 29; and June 12. Tickets are $30, except for the opening night performance on Saturday, April 26 which is $45 and includes a gala reception with the actors. There will be three pay-what-you-can (minimum $10) performances on Friday, May 2; Thursday, May 8; and Wednesday, May 21. The third Friday of every month is wine night at the Odyssey: enjoy complimentary wine and snacks and mingle with the cast after the show. The Odyssey Theatre is located at 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West Los Angeles, 90025. For reservations and information, call (310) 477-2055 or go to www.OdysseyTheatre.com.