ZERO HOUR Gets Off-Broadway Premiere, 11/14
ZERO HOUR, Jim Brochu's award-winning play about the life of theatre legend Zero Mostel will make its Off-Broadway premiere at Theatre at Saint Clement's beginning Saturday, November 14th. Produced by Kurt Peterson and Edmund Gaynes in association with The Peccadillo Theater Company, the show will have its Opening Night on Sunday, November 22nd at 7 p.m. The limited engagement of ZERO HOUR will continue through January 31st.
Three-time Academy Award nominee Piper Laurie directs the production which has played enormously successful engagements in Washington DC, San Francisco, Houston, and a 16-week sold-out run in South Florida which garnered Brochu the 2009 Carbonell Award as Best Actor in a Play. ZERO HOUR, originally produced in Los Angeles, received the LA Stage Ovation Award for Best New Play.
Starring Jim Brochu as Zero Mostel, ZERO HOUR is set at Mostel's West 28th Street painting studio where a naïve reporter attempts to interview the famously volatile actor, prompting an explosion of memory, humor, outrage, and juicy backstage lore. It is July 1977 and the actor is giving his final interview before leaving for the pre-Broadway tryout of The Merchant in Philadelphia. Mostel only played one performance as Shylock before his sudden death at the age of 62.
ZERO HOUR traces Mostel's early days growing up on the Lower East Side as the son of Orthodox Jewish immigrant parents, through his rise as a stand-up comedian, from the Borscht Belt to Manhattan's most exclusive supper clubs, and from the devastation of the blacklist to his greatest Broadway triumphs, most notably as Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof and working through his love-hate relationship with Jerome Robbins.
Brochu has said, "Zero had a great influence on my life and I was fortunate to get to know him when I was first starting out. His life was filled with great laughter, great drama and great life lessons for all of us. Few people in show business had more obstacles to overcome than Zero Mostel. He was disowned by his own parents, by his profession and even by his own country."
With partner, composer Steve Schalchlin, Jim Brochu penned the award-winning Off-Broadway musicals The Last Session and The Big Voice: God or Merman? In addition to his theatrical work, Brochu's acting credits also include appearances on "All My Children," "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman," "Cheers," "Wings," and "Bram and Alice."
Piper Laurie has appeared on stage in Mornings at Seven (Lincoln Center Theatre), as Laura in The Glass Menagerie with Maureen Stapleton; Larry Kramer's The Destiny of Me; Molly Kazan's Rosemary and the Alligators; William Luce's one-person play, The Last Flapper about as Zelda Fitzgerald; Twelfth Night, Macbeth and The Cherry Orchard, among many others. She received Oscar nominations for The Hustler opposite Paul Newman as well as the fanatical mother in Carrie, and Mrs. Norman in Children of a Lesser God. She was nominated for an Emmy for the original live TV broadcast of Days of Wine & Roses, directed by John Frankenheimer and won the Emmy for "Promise" and the Golden Globe for her work on "Twin Peaks." She has starred in over 60 films, including Tim opposite Mel Gibson and Truman Capote's The Grass Harp. Piper wrote and directed her first film, Property and recently filmed Hesher with Natalie Portman and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
Zero Mostel was nominated for a Tony Award for his work in Ulysses in Nighttown and won Tonys for his performances in Fiddler on the Roof, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and Rhinoceros. His film credits include The Front, Rhinoceros, The Hot Rock, The Great Bank Robbery, The Producers, and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.
Performances of ZERO HOUR will be Monday at 7 pm, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 8 p.m., with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. at Theatre at Saint Clement's, 423 West 46th Street (between Ninth & Tenth Ave.) Tickets are $35 and $55 and are available through Telecharge.com 212-239-6200. For more information, visit www.ZeroHourShow.com.