Jeffrey C. Hawkins, Ron McClary Lead TACT's THREE MEN ON A HORSE

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TACT/The Actors Company Theatre (Scott Alan Evans, Cynthia Harris and Simon Jones, Co-Artistic Directors), the critically-acclaimed company "dedicated to presenting neglected or rarely produced plays of literary merit," announces complete casting for Three Men on a Horse, by John Cecil Holm & George Abbott, the final production of the company's 2010/11 season. Directed by TACT Co-Artistic Director Scott Alan Evans, performances begin at Theatre Row's Beckett Theatre (410 West 42nd Street - between 9th & 10th Avenues) on Monday, March 14th, 2011 at 7:30pm. Opening night is set for Thursday, March 24th at 7:30pm. Performances will continue through Saturday, April 16th.

The cast of Three Men on A Horse includes TACT Company Members Jeffrey C. Hawkins (The Memorandum, Incident at Vichy), Ron McClary (Incident at Vichy, Home), James Murtaugh (The Late Christopher Bean; Ah, Wilderness-Lincoln Center), Gregory Salata (Bent, Incident at Vichy), and Scott Schafer (Eccentricities of a Nightingale, Bedroom Farce), as well as guest artists Becky Baumwoll, Don Burroughs, Geoffrey Molloy, Julianna Zinkel and Kristen Vaphides.

The creative team is comprised of Brett J. Banakis (sets), Martha Hally (costumes), Mary Louise Geiger (lights), Daryl Bornstein (sound), Joseph Trapanese (original music), and Lauren Madden (properties). E Sara Barnes is Production Stage Manager.

In Three Men on a Horse, hen-pecked greeting-card writer, Erwin Trowbridge, has an uncanny ability for predicting the winners of horse races. For Erwin it's just a hobby, but when his extraordinary talent is discovered by a down-and-out pack of gamblers, Erwin suddenly finds himself very far from his safe suburban home in Ozone Heights. This dizzy and delightful Depression-era comedy by one of theatre's most accomplished showmen will bring a much needed lift to your Recession -wearied spirits.

Three Men on a Horse has enjoyed four Broadway productions since it debuted at The Playhouse Theatre on January 30, 1935 where it remained until November 1936. It then transferred to the Fulton Theatre to complete its run of 835 performances. Directed by George Abbott, the opening night cast included Garson Kanin, Shirley Booth, and Sam Levene. The first revival opened at the Forrest Theatre on October 9, 1942 and ran for 28 performances. Directed by John Cecil Holm, the cast included Horace McMahon. The second revival (directed by George Abbott) opened at the Lyceum Theatre on October 16, 1969 and ran for four previews and 100 performances. The cast included Sam Levene, Jack Gilford, Dorothy Loudon, Butterfly McQueen, Paul Ford, Hal Linden, and Rosemary Prinz. The third revival (also at the Lyceum Theatre) was staged by the National Actors Theatre. It began previews on March 23, 1993, opened on April 13, and closed on May 16 after 24 previews and 39 performances. Directed by John Tillinger, the cast included Tony Randall, Jack Klugman, Jerry Stiller, Ellen Greene, and Julie Hagerty. In the spring of 1987, the play was presented at the Royal National Theatre and because it was the first time it was produced in London, it was eligible for nomination for a Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Comedy, which it won. A 1936 film adaptation was produced and directed by Mervyn LeRoy and starred Frank McHugh, Joan Blondell, Guy Kibbee, and Sam Levene. TACT presented a concert performance of Three Men on a Horse in 1998 at its first home, The NY Historical Society.

Three Men on a Horse will have the following performance schedule: Monday, Wednesday - Friday at 7:30pm; Saturday at 2pm & 8pm; Sunday at 3pm. Tickets are $36.25 - $56.25 and are available 24/7 through Telecharge.com/212-239-6200 or at the Theatre Row box office (410 West 42nd Street (between 9th & 10th Avenues) between 12pm and 8pm daily.

TACT/THE ACTORS COMPANY THEATRE's celebrated company of actors was drawn together in 1992 by a love of the literature of the theatre. Since that time, they have grown to become a true ensemble: a group that has developed a common vocabulary and a technique based on their specific artistic vision and collective body of work. TACT company members, whose cumulative experience includes scores of significant roles on and off Broadway, in the country's finest regional theatres and in many films and television shows, have received Emmy, Obie, Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Awards, in addition to several Tony nominations.

After presenting thirteen seasons of "in-concert" performances, the company took a leap forward with its 2006-07 season by presenting fully staged productions of David Storey's Home and The Sea by Edward Bond at The Beckett Theatre on Theatre Row. TACT became a resident company on Theatre Row with its 2007-08 season when they presented critically-acclaimed productions of The Runner Stumbles by Milan Stitt and The Eccentricities of a Nightingale, by Tennessee Williams, which The New York Times included in its "Top 10 Theatre Picks for 2008." The company's productions of Alan Ayckbourn's Bedroom Farce, Arthur Miller's Incident at Vichy and last season's The Late Christopher Bean by Sidney Howard and The Cocktail Party by T.S. Eliot, became instant hits and enjoyed extended runs.

BIOGRAPHIES

John Cecil Holm (Playwright) originally wrote Three Men on a Horse under the title Hobby Horse, while acting in a Broadway production of Maxwell Anderson's Mary of Scotland produced by The Theatre Guild. Holm was an established Broadway actor who had previously starred in J.B. Priestly's Dangerous Corner, but Hobby Horse was Holm's first foray into playwriting. John Cecil Holm would go on from Three Men to write the book for the musical Best Foot Forward, directed by George Abbott and choreographed by Gene Kelly, and the Broadway plays Brighten the Corner, Gramercy Ghost, and The Southwest Corner. Holm also worked as an actor well into his later years, becoming particularly popular in comedic character roles. He made his final bow on the Broadway stage in 1970, appearing in the long running comedy Forty Carats alongside Julie Harris.

George Abbott (Playwright) The great comedy maestro of Broadway whose career eventually spanned over 70 years, was brought in by the producers of Three Men on a Horse to add rewrites and direct John Cecil Holm's script. In 1935, when Three Men premiered, Abbott was already a household name. He first began his career as an actor on Broadway in 1913 and would appear in plays such as Processional by Jonathan Howard Lawson before beginning a long and storied career as a director, writer and producer in both theatre and film, eventually working on 113 Broadway productions in one capacity or another. Famed for his production's frenetic physical pacing and wisecracks flying like machine gun fire, Abbott was also known for cultivating the talents of young artists like Bob Fosse, Harold Prince and Jerome Robbins. Some of Abbott's best-known works as a writer include The Pajama Game, Damn Yankees and The Boys from Syracuse. George Abbott was the recipient of six Tony awards, a Pulitzer Prize and a Drama Desk award. He worked in the theatre until his death in 1995 at the age of 107.

Scott Alan Evans (Director) is Co-Artistic & Executive Director of TACT. Since 1993, TACT has unearthed and Evans has produced and/or directed over 90 forgotten or neglected plays, bringing many back to the cannon of plays produced. Evans' most recent production of T.S. Eliot's The Cocktail Party was among TACT's most successful and was recently cited as one of the best revival of the season by the Wall Street Journal. For TACT, Evans adapted & directed the US premiere of Nöel Coward's Long Island Sound, and conceived, co-wrote & directed the world premiere of The Triangle Factory Project. The New York Post called Triangle "the theatrical event of the season." The play has been published by Dramatists Play Services and continues to enjoy productions across the country. More recently, Evans has produced nine and directed five of TACT's productions presented at their current home at Theater Row, where TACT is a resident theatre company, including Home, The Sea, The Runner Stumbles, Incident at Vichy and The Cocktail Party. In addition to his work with TACT, Evans wrote & directed the musical, Goose! Beyond the Nursery (3 Outer Critic Circle Award nominations including Best Off-Broadway Prod.). Other recent NY Theatre credits include a dramatic version of Joseph Hayden's The Seven Last Words for the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and The Constant Wife for NYU Graduate Acting program.

For ten years, Mr. Evans served as Artistic Director of the American Musicals Project, (AMP) at The New-York Historical Society. AMP, an academic program which Mr. Evans helped devise and craft, uses great American musicals to help NYC public middle school teachers teach social studies and English. Each spring he produced and directed an annual concert series at the New-York Historical Society celebrating great musical theatre writers and featuring Broadway headliners.

He is member of SDC and the Dramatist Guild.




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