A MOON FOR THE MISBEGOTTEN (MOON) Opens 3/15 at Rubicon

A MOON FOR THE MISBEGOTTEN (MOON) Opens 3/15 at Rubicon

A MOON FOR THE MISBEGOTTEN (MOON), by Pulitzer Prize winner and Nobel Laureate Eugene O'Neill, continues Rubicon Theatre Company's 16th Season helmed by Artistic Associate Jenny Sullivan with company member Joseph Fuqua in the role of James Tyrone. (The production marks the 23rd collaboration for Sullivan and Fuqua, who have worked together at Rubicon on productions including Hamlet, You Can't Take It With You and Old Wicked Songs.) Other cast members are Rebekah Tripp, Granville Van Dusen, Scott Roberts and Matthew Grondin. Opening Saturday, March 15, 2014 at 7:00 p.m., MOON runs Wednesdays through Sundays until April 6th with low-priced previews on Wednesday, March 12th at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 13th at 8 p.m. and Friday, March 14th at 8 p.m.

A story of vulnerability, passion, humor and torment, MOON takes audiences to a rural Connecticut farm, where the sins of a failed actor-turned-landlord named Jim Tyrone collide with the outwardly gruff vulnerability of an Irish working class farmer's daughter named Josie Hogan. In one fateful evening, these two lost souls move through a mythic tale of old sins and the power of love.

Through several runs spanning Broadway and international stages, MOON has delivered several Tony and Drama Desk awards in addition to countless others. Described by the New York Times as "one of the 20th century's greatest romances," this soul-searching piece of American literature was one of O'Neill's last completed plays. Deeply personal and incredibly powerful, MOON expresses the importance of redemption through two lost souls that catch a glimpse of happiness in the moonlight.

MORE ABOUT THE PLAY

Inspired by the tumultuous last years of O'Neill's alcoholic older brother, MOON takes on a tone of forgiveness not typical of other O'Neill works. As a loose sequel to another heralded O'Neill play, Long Day's Journey into Night, MOON features the reoccurring character Jim Tyrone.

MOON takes place on a rural and barren Connecticut farm where Phil Hogan (played by Granville Van Dusen), an aggressively brazen Irish immigrant, works the farm with his daughter, Josie Hogan (Rebekah Tripp). Josie, a boisterous Irish woman with a quick tongue and a tender heart, is the last of four children who remains devoted to her father and the farm. Josie is the only sibling that seems to understand her father with an ability to hold her own against him. Josie maintains a rough exterior to guard against the vulnerability of a poor self-image, a promiscuous reputation and a secret love of the Hogan's landlord, Jim Tyrone. Jim inherited the Hogan's land after the death of his father. Although Jim attempts to maintain a sophisticated New York style as a failed Broadway actor, the depth of a tortured soul haunted by the loss of his mother and the ravages of alcoholism appear to surface constantly.

During a late night of drinking one evening, Jim mentions to Phil that he plans to sell the Hogan's land to a competing farm owner despite the previous agreement to sell to the Hogans. This prompts Phil to devise a plan in which Josie and Jim's fondness for each other will be exploited into a marriage proposal. As Josie begins to speak with Jim about the farm one fateful evening, all pretenses begin to fade away. Old sins are uncovered and the truth in their souls reveals itself. Although the scheme eventually unravels and the reality of the situation comes to light, Jim Tyrone and Josie Hogan catch a glimpse of happiness in the moonlight.

Born on October 16, 1888, Eugene O'Neill was the son of the famous stage actor James O'Neill who was best known for his role in The Count of Monte Cristo. O'Neill spent most of his younger life traveling with his touring father due, in part, to his mother's addiction to morphine which began shortly after his birth. At the age of 7, O'Neill was sent to a strict Catholic boarding school, which eventually lead to 3 other educational institutions including Princeton University. However, O'Neill never seemed to be fully dedicated to his studies and eventually left the university.

After leaving Princeton, O'Neill spent a large amount of time surrounded by alcohol while exploring New York with his older brother James. O'Neill appeared to flounder as he attempted several careers with limited success. Also at this time, O'Neill married his first wife which lasted only a brief time and resulted in a son named Eugene O'Neill, Jr.

In 1912, O'Neill came down with a severe case of tuberculosis which required a significant recuperation. It was during this recuperation that O'Neill discovered his passion for playwriting through the works of various artists such as European dramatist August Strindberg. O'Neill enrolled in a writing class at Harvard University, and in 1916 had his first play premiere in Provincetown, Massachusetts named Bound East for Cardiff. The same year, O'Neill married for the second time resulting in two children, Shane and Oona.

In 1920, O'Neill took Broadway by storm with his Pulitzer Prize winning play Beyond the Horizon. Anna Christie followed in 1922 and delivered O'Neill's second Pulitzer Prize. The next year O'Neill suffered a great personal tragedy with the loss of his brother, James, due to alcoholism. Although this marked a tremendous low point for O'Neill, the works that resulted were said to be some of the best of his career. Soon after his Broadway success, O'Neill left his second wife and married Carlotta Monterey.

In 1931 O'Neill became the first American playwright to win the Nobel Prize in Literature which marked O'Neills place as one of the most iconic playwrights in American literature. Credited with being the first American playwright to introduce the dramatic technique of realism, O'Neills legacy includes a tremendous group of over 50 plays receiving countless awards and recognition including Long Day's Journey Into Night, A Moon for the Misbegotten, The Iceman Cometh, Mourning Becomes Electra, and Desire Under the Elms. In the end, O'Neill seemed to pour every dramatic hardship experienced in his life into a passion for playwriting that transformed the American stage forever.

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