Legendary, Volatile Painter Mark Rothko¬'s Life Sparks RED At Northern Stage March 14-April 1


Northern Stage, considered one of the most prestigious and fastest-growing regional theaters in New England, presents the Tony Award winning play, Red, March 14- April 21. Red was first produced at the 250-seat Donmar Warehouse in London in December 2009, starring Alfred Molina and Eddie Redmayne. The production transferred to Broadway's John Golden Theatre, with the same cast, for a limited run, from March 11 – June 27, 2010.  It picked up six Tony Awards, including Best Play, Best Direction, and Best Performance by a Featured Actor (Redmayne), as well as three Drama Desk Awards, including Best Play. 

Painter Mark Rothko, the subject of Red, shook the art world with his vibrant "multi-form" paintings.  Heavily influenced by Nietzsche's The Birth of Tragedy, Rothko believed that his paintings served the same purpose as the Greek tragedies, producing a catharsis that released the emotional energy of viewers.  He demanded that his paintings deserved proper respect, dictating how and where his work was hung and lit and even where viewers should stand to best appreciate them. In 1958, he received the largest commission ever awarded to a 20th century artist, to create a series of murals for the Four Seasons restaurant in the new Seagram's building on Park Avenue in New York, a modernist structure designed by Phillip Johnson/Mies Van der Rohe.  While he viewed the commission as a vindication, he resented his potential audience, telling a friend that he wanted to create "something that will ruin the appetite of every son of a bitch who ever eats in that room."  When he visited the nearly complete restaurant, the setting so appalled him that he returned the commission and put the paintings in storage for 10 years. In 1968, Rothko was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm, forcing him to paint smaller works to avoid strenuous exertion.  At the same time, his second marriage began to fall apart.  In 1970, at the age of 66, he committed suicide, having taken an overdose of antidepressants and sliced his arms with a razor.

Award-winning actor I.N. Sierros stars as Mark Rothko. His Off-Broadway work includes The Heart is a Lonely HunterAgamemnon with Olympia Dukakis, and Flesh & Blood with Cherry Jones. His film work includes The Departed directed by Martin Scorsese and Road to Perdition directed by Sam MendesCory Grant, who plays Rothko's assistant Ken, returns to Northern Stage after a turn as Frankie Valli in the Broadway production of Jersey Boys.  His appearance in Broken Hands at the New York Fringe Festival earned him a Best Actor award.  He has toured nationally as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet and appeared in Floyd Collins and in the title role in The Who's Tommy at Berkshire Theatre Festival.  

Northern Stage's Founding Artistic Director Brooke Ciardelli brought the company to the Briggs Opera House in 1997; since then, Northern Stage has offered 100 productions, including World Premieres such as The Shrew TamerOvid: Tales of Myth & Magic and A Christmas Carol: The Musical.  Other highlights include a staged reading of Who's Afraid of VirginiaWoolf? with Patrick Stewart and Lisa Harrow and a reading of Resurrection Blues,with the playwright, Pulitzer Prize winner Arthur Miller, in attendance.  The company has been honored with Moss Hart Awards for Excellence in Theater from the New England Theatre Conference five times, for productions of To Kill A Mockingbird (1999), All My Sons (2004), Les Misérables (2008), Hamlet (2009) and Amadeus (2010), as well as an Addison Award for The Shrew Tamer (2004) and 2010 Owl Awards for Best Actress and Best Musical and 2011 awards for Best Comedy Theater and Best Artistic Director.

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