Irish Rep's SEA MARKS Begins Performances Tonight
Off-Broadway's award-winning Irish Repertory Theatre closes its 2013-2014 Season with a revival of Gardner McKay's SEA MARKS, directed by Ciarán O'Reilly. The romantic two-hander stars Tony and Drama Desk Award nominee Xanthe Elbrick (CORAM BOY, Irish Rep's CANDIDA) and Patrick Fitzgerald (Irish Rep's GIBRALTAR). SEA MARKS begins performances tonight, April 23rd, and continues through June 15th on the Francis J. Greenburger Mainstage of the Irish Repertory Theatre (132 West 22nd Street). The Press Opening is Monday, May 5, 2014 at 7PM.
SEA MARKS is the story of two people falling in love. Colm is a rough-hewn fisherman, living by the sea, on a remote island off the West of Ireland. Timothea lives in Liverpool where she works in a book publishing house. They meet. Letters follow -- letters full of powerful alluring words like she's never heard before . . . Gardner McKay's play beautifully captures the heartache caused by long-distance love when the call of the heart challenges the call of the wild.
Xanthe Elbrick (Timothea) made her Broadway debut in 2007 in CORAM BOY, receiving a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Play. In 2010, she appeared in the Irish Rep production of CANDIDA, earning a Drama Desk Award nomination. Her other stage credits include BEEBO BRINKER CHRONICLES, MRS. WARREN'S PROFESSION, CABARET, A DOLL'S HOUSE, OKLAHOMA! and THE VAGINA MONOLGUES, as well as the Williamstown Theatre Festival productions of ANYTHING GOES, I HAVE LOVED STRANGERS and THE MIRACLE WORKER. She trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, and The Actors Studio (MFA) in New York City. She graduated with a Masters in Philosophy from Edinburgh University (2000) where she was also Director of the Edinburgh Footlights Theatre Company. Xanthe won the BBC Drama 'Act Up' Award in 2001.
Patrick Fitzgerald (Colm). A playwright and actor, Mr. Fitzgerald made his New York debut in Irish Repertory's first production, and has appeared in numerous shows for the company since, including a production of SEA MARKS in 1989. He was last seen in his play GIBRALTER, a two-character adaptation of James Joyce's ULYSSES. Prior to that, he played the title role in Dion Boucicault's THE SHAUGHRAUN, directed by Charlotte Moore. He won the Clarence Derwent Award for Hal Prince's GRANDCHILD OF KINGS. Other theatre credits include Mike Leigh's ECSTASY (OBIE Award), THE SISTER ROSENWEIG (Lincoln Center and Broadway), MOJO (Atlantic) and A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (Steppenwolf).
Gardner McKay (Playwright, 1932-2001) was born George Cadogan Gardner McKay in Manhattan. At age fifteen, he published his first story, and after attending Cornell University, he initially found success as an actor on the television series "Adventures in Paradise" (1959-62). He received many awards for his writing, including The Drama Critics Circle Award, the Sydney Carrington Prize, and three National Endowment for the Arts grants for playwriting. His plays include SEA MARKS (National Regional Theatre Award, Canada; Drama Critics Circle Award, Best Play; Manhattan Theatre Club; Players Theatre), MASTERS OF THE SEA, TOYER, ME, and IN ORDER OF APPEARANCE. SEA MARKS was broadcast on B.B.C. Radio Theatre, and his play UNTOLD DAMAGE was adapted and directed by McKay for PBS. McKay was also a drama critic and editor for the Los Angeles Herald Tribune. He taught playwriting at UCLA, and playwriting and screenwriting at USC; in Juneau, Alaska; and at the University of Hawaii. McKay's books include the autobiography Journey Without a Map, and the novels Toyer, The Kinsman, The Last American, 10 Bloomsbury Square, and Trompe L'Oeil. From 1995 until his death in 2001, McKay wrote and recorded stories for his weekly radio show Stories on the Wind on Hawaii Public Radio.
Ciarán O'Reilly (Director) helmed the Irish Rep's recent productions of Conor McPherson's THE WEIR, Brian Friel's THE FREEDOM OF THE CITY and Eugene O'Neill's BEYOND THE HORIZON and THE EMPEROR JONES (Joseph A. Callaway Award winner for Direction; Lucille Lortel, Drama Desk, Drama League, and Audelco award nominations). As an actor, he co-starred in Irish Rep's recent revival of Sean O'Casey's JUNO AND THE PAYCOCK earlier this season, as well as Brian Friel's DANCING AT LUGHNASA and MOLLY SWEENEY in 2011.
SEA MARKS has set design by Charlie Corcoran, costume design by Leon Dobkowski, lighting design by Michael Gottlieb, sound design by M. Florian Staab, and music by Ryan Rumery. Wig design is by Robert Charles Vallance, and properties by Sven Henry Nelson.
SEA MARKS will be performed April 23rd through June 15th on the Francis J. Greenburger Mainstage of the Irish Repertory Theatre (132 West 22nd Street). The Press Opening is Monday, May 5, 2014 at 7PM. The performance schedule is: Wednesdays at 3pm and 8pm; Thursdays at 7pm; Fridays at 8pm; Saturdays at 3pm and 8pm; and Sundays at 3pm.
Photo by Carol Rosegg