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Anna Chlumsky, Becky Ann Baker, Adam Pally and More to Star in CARDINAL at Second Stage

Second Stage Theater has announced complete casting for the world premiere of GREG PIERCE's play, Cardinal, directed by KATE WHORISKEY.

The company will feature BECKY ANN BAKER ("Girls") as Nancy Prenchel, ANNA CHLUMSKY ("Veep") as Lydia Lensky, ALEX HURT (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof) as Nat Prenchel, ADAM PALLY ("Happy Endings") as Jeff Torm, STEPHEN PARK (Aubergine) as Li-Wei Chen, and EUGENE YOUNG (Geek!) as Jason Chen.

CARDINAL will begin previews Tuesday, January 9, 2018 at the Tony Kiser Theater (305 West 43rd Street) and will officially open on Tuesday, January 30, 2018.

Paint it red. So begins Lydia's wild idea to invigorate her Rust Belt town. But when a whip-smart entrepreneur co-opts her scheme, a precarious rivalry is born. A battle for the town's soul ensues, causing its obsessive mayor, its defiant matriarch, and the rest of its residents to question who they are and where they're headed.

CARDINAL is the Benjamin Maurice Rosen Commission for Second Stage Theater.

CARDINAL will feature scenic design by Derek McLane; costume design by Jennifer Moeller; lighting design by Amith Chandrashaker; sound design by Leah Gelpe; and casting byTelsey + Company.

Second Stage Theater's 2017-18 season at the Tony Kiser Theater kicked off with the acclaimed production of HARVEY FIERSTEIN's TORCH SONG, directed by MOISÉS KAUFMANand starring MICHAEL URIE and MERCEDES RUEHL, and will also feature the New York Premiere of TRACY LETTS'S acclaimed play, MARY PAGE MARLOWE, directed by LILA NEUGEBAUER in June 2018.

On Broadway at The Hayes Theater, Second Stage will present KENNETH LONERGAN's LOBBY HERO, directed by TRIP CULLMAN and starring MICHAEL CERA, CHRIS EVANSand BRIAN TYREE HENRY, as well as the Broadway Premiere of YOUNG JEAN LEE's STRAIGHT WHITE MEN, directed by ANNA D. SHAPIRO.


BECKY ANN BAKER (Nancy Prenchel) received a 2017 Emmy Nomination for her work in the final season of "Girls" on HBO. Other TV: "Freaks and Geeks," "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt," "Last Week Tonight," "Gotham," "The Good Wife," and "Nurse Jackie." Broadway: Good People, All My Sons, Assassins, Titanic, A Streetcar Named Desire, Best Little Whorehouse. Off-Broadway: The Hairy Ape, Peer Gynt, Dear Elizabeth, Barbecue, and more. Films include Starbright, The End of the Tour, 23 Blast, Hope Springs, Nights in Rodanthe, Men in Black and A Simple Plan.

ANNA CHLUMSKY (Lydia Lensky) was most recently seen in the sixth season of the Emmy© winning comedy, "Veep," as Amy Brookheimer on HBO. In 2017, Chlumsky was nominated for her fifth consecutive Emmy© in the category of "Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series" for her portrayal as Brookheimer. She has also been nominated for a Critics Choice Award, SAG Ensemble, for her role. She won the Gracie Allen Award in 2015 for Outstanding Female Actor in a Supporting Role in a comedy or Musical for her work on "Veep." Chlumsky made her Broadway debut in 2015 in Scott Ellis' revival of You Can't Take It With You. She also reprised her role as Iris Peabody in Joe DiPietro's Living on Love, which made its Williamstown Theatre Festival debut in 2014 and transferred to Broadway. Additionally, her New York stage credits include: 3C, Love, Loss, and What I Wore (Westside Theatre); So Help Me God (Mint Theatre Company); Unconditional (LAByrinth Theater Company); The Fabulous Life of a Size Zero (DR2); Darwin in Malibu (Bay Street Theatre); The Butcherhouse Chronicles (Summer Play Festival); Balm in Gilead (Barefoot Theater Company - Member); Half Life (Flea Theater/Fringe Festival); Iphigeneia at Aulis (TimeSpace Productions); Measure for Measure (Astoria Performing Arts Center); No Alarms: Headfullofradio (Veritas Productions); and The Trojan Women (Veritas Productions). Additional TV and film credits include TV: AMC's "Halt and Catch Fire," NBC's "Hannibal," "30 Rock," and "Law & Order SVU." Film: The End of Tour, Bert and Arnie's Guide to Friendship, In The Loop; The Good Guy; Blood Car the Glamour Reel Short; Wait; My Girl 2; Gold Diggers; and her film debut My Girl.

ALEX HURT (Nat Prenchel). Broadway: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Off-Broadway: The Whirligig (The New Group), Love, Love, Love (Roundabout), Placebo (Playwrights Horizons), Scenes from a Marriage (NYTW), The Caucasian Chalk Circle (CSC). Regional: Other Desert Cities (Alley); A Behanding in Spokane (SF Playhouse); No Man's Land, Who Am I This Time(A.R.T.); The Lion in Winter, Othello (Hedgerow). Film: Frankie Keeps Talking, Cut Shoot Kill, The River Why. TV: "Bull," "Law & Order: SVU," "Elementary."

ADAM PALLY (Jeff Torm) is widely known for starring as Max Blum in the ABC cult hit comedy series, "Happy Endings," and is currently in production on LD Entertainment's Dog Days,which will be directed by Ken Marino. Through his production company, Clone Wolf, Pally currently serves as an EP on Comedy Central's "The President Show" and EP on "Los Feliz Daycare" which is in development for Hulu. Clone Wolf is also developing numerous projects for broadcast, cable and new media with ABC Studios. Other television credits include: "Making History" and "The Mindy Project." He recently completed production on Lionsgate's Most Likely To Murder. Other film credits include Band Aid, The Little Hours, Joshy, Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life, A.C.O.D. The To Do List, Monogamy, The Sophomore, Taking Woodstock, Solitary Man, and a cameo playing Gary the Cameraman in Iron Man 3. In addition to his acting credits, Pally and his writing partner, Gil Ozeri, recently sold an untitled comedy script to Disney. Pally has been a member of the Upright Citizens Brigade since 2003, and continues to both write and perform sketch comedy.

STEPHEN PARK (Li-Wei Chen) is excited to be making his Second Stage debut. Off-Broadway: Aubergine (Playwrights Horizons); The Dumb Waiter, Ivanov (NAATCO); The New Paradigm (Atlantic Theater Company); Aunt Dan and Lemon (The New Group); Paternity (Cherry Lane Theater). Regional: East of Eden (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); A Language of Their Own, Big Hunk o' Burnin' Love (East West Players). Film: Snowpiercer, A Serious Man, State of Play, Desperate Measures, Fargo, Falling Down, Toys, Kindergarten Cop, Do the Right Thing. TV: "Person of Interest," "The Mindy Project," "Believe," "Elementary," "White Collar," "Law & Order," "Mad About You," "Friends," "In Living Color."

EUGENE YOUNG (Jason Chen). NYC credits: Geek! and Alice in Slasherland (Vampire Cowboys), Twelfth Night (Arclight Theater/Leviathan Lab). Regional credits: Alice in Slasherland (Syracuse Red House), Tiger Style! (The O'Neill Theatre Center). Television credits: "Jane the Virgin" (CW), "Veep" (HBO), "Criminal Minds" (CBS), "Revenge" (ABC), "Unforgettable" (CBS). Eugene is also a part of Ma-Yi Theatre Company's Writer's Lab.

GREG PIERCE (Playwright) grew up in Shelburne, Vermont. His play Slowgirl was the inaugural play of Lincoln Center's Claire Tow Theater (LCT3). It was subsequently produced by Steppenwolf Theatre and the Geffen Playhouse, among others. His play, Her Requiem, a Lincoln Center Theater commission, was also produced by LCT3. The Landing, a musical written with composer John Kander, premiered at the Vineyard Theater in NYC. His second musical with Kander, Kid Victory, was co-produced by Signature Theatre in Virginia and the Vineyard Theater. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, co-written with director Stephen Earnhart, based on the novel by Haruki Murakami, premiered at the Edinburgh International Festival, and went on to play the Singapore Arts Festival. The Quarry, with music by Greg's brother Randal Pierce was commissioned and produced by Vermont Stage Company. Fellow Travelers, an opera he wrote with composer Gregory Spears, based on the novel by Thomas Mallon, premiered at Cincinnati Opera. Greg has received fellowships from the Edward F. Albee Foundation, Yaddo, The Djerassi Institute, New York Public Library, and Baryshnikov Arts Center. He currently holds a commission from Manhattan Theatre Club/Sloan Foundation. His work has been developed with Naked Angels, The New Group, Atlantic Theater Company, Asia Society, the Rattlestick Theater, and the Public Theater's Under the Radar festival. He has a BA from Oberlin College and an MFA in Creative Writing from Warren Wilson College. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild and the WGA.

KATE WHORISKEY (Director) most recently directed Pulitzer Prize-winning Sweat at Studio 54. Her work has been seen on Broadway, off-Broadway, and regionally. In New York, she has directed at Circle in the Square, the Public, Second Stage, Manhattan Theatre Club, Lincoln Center Theater, the Vineyard Theater, Theatre for A New Audience, and Playwrights Horizons. She has directed the premieres of Lynn Nottage's Intimate Apparel, Fabulation, Ruined, and Sweat; Julia Cho's Aubergine and The Piano Teacher; Greg Pierce's Her Requiem, among others. She was nominated for a Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel for her work on Ruined. She has worked regionally at The Goodman Theatre, South Coast Rep, The Geffen, the American Repertory Theatre, the Shakespeare Theatre, the Huntington, Baltimore Center Stage, the Arena Stage, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Perseverance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Sundance Theatre Lab, The Fisher Center, and The Eugene O'Neill Center. Internationally, she directed Magdalena at the Chatelet Theatre in Paris and Teatro Municipal de Sao Paolo.

Under the artistic direction of Carole Rothman, SECOND STAGE THEATER produces a diverse range of premieres and new interpretations of America's best contemporary theater by living American playwrights, including 2015 Pulitzer Prize winner Between Riverside and Crazy by Stephen Adly Guirgis; 2010 Pulitzer Prize winner Next to Normal by Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey; 2012 Pulitzer Prize winner Water by the Spoonful by Quiara Alegria Hudes; The Last Five Years by Jason Robert Brown; Dogfight by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Peter Duchan;Dear Evan Hansen by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Steven Levenson; By the Way, Meet Vera Stark by Lynn Nottage; Trust and Lonely, I'm Not by Paul Weitz; The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity by Kristoffer Diaz; Everyday Rapture and Whorl Inside a Loop by Dick Scanlan and Sherie Rene Scott; Let Me Down Easy by Anna Deavere Smith; Becky Shaw by Gina Gionfriddo; Eurydice by Sarah Ruhl; The Little Dog Laughed by Douglas Carter Beane; Metamorphoses by Mary Zimmerman; The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin; Jitney by August Wilson; Jar the Floor by Cheryl L. West; Uncommon Women and Others by Wendy Wasserstein; Crowns by Regina Taylor; Saturday Night by Stephen Sondheim; Afterbirth: Kathy & Mo's Greatest Hits by Mo Gaffney and Kathy Najimy; This Is Our Youth by Kenneth Lonergan; Ricky Jay and His 52 Assistants by Ricky Jay;Coastal Disturbances by Tina Howe; A Soldier's Play by Charles Fuller; Little Murders by Jules Feiffer; The Good Times Are Killing Me by Lynda Barry; and Tiny Alice by Edward Albee.

The company's more than 130 citations include six 2017 Tony Awards for Dear Evan Hansen (Best Musical, Best Lead Actor in a Musical, Ben Platt; Best Featured Actress in a Musical, Rachel Bay Jones; Best Book of a Musical, Best Original Score, Best Orchestrations), three 2009 Tony Awards for Next to Normal (Best Lead Actress in a Musical, Alice Ripley; Best Score, Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey; Best Orchestrations, Michael Starobin and Tom Kitt); the 2007 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play (Julie White, The Little Dog Laughed); the 2005 Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical (Rachel Sheinkin, ...Spelling Bee) and Best Featured Actor in a Musical (Dan Fogler, ...Spelling Bee); the 2002 Tony Award for Best Director of a Play (Mary Zimmerman for Metamorphoses); the 2002 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Body of Work, 30 Obie Awards, eight Outer Critics Circle Awards, two Clarence Derwent Awards, 13 Drama Desk Awards, nine Theatre World Awards, 19 Lucille Lortel Awards, the Drama Critics Circle Award and 23 AUDELCO Awards.

In 1999, Second Stage Theater opened The Tony Kiser Theater, its state-of-the-art, 296-seat theater, designed by renowned Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. In 2002, Second Stage launched "Second Stage Theater Uptown" series to showcase the work of up and coming artists at the McGinn/Cazale Theater. The Theater supports artists through several programs that include residencies, fellowships and commissions, and engages students and community members through education and outreach programs.

Second Stage Theater purchased the historic Helen Hayes Theater, located at 240 W. 44th Street, in 2015. The company will continue to lease and operate their original theaters on the city's Upper West Side and in Midtown Manhattan. Second Stage Theater has enlisted David Rockwell and The Rockwell Group to make renovations and updates to the 104 year old landmark building. With The Hayes Theater, Second Stage will be building a permanent home on Broadway dedicated exclusively to American plays and living American playwrights.

Second Stage Theater is investing in its future on Broadway by co-commissioning established playwrights through its STAGE-2-STAGE program, launching with Los Angeles's Center Theatre Group. This ongoing program will provide a pathway to Broadway, with each play receiving an initial production in Los Angeles at one of CTG's three theaters before moving to New York. The commissioned playwrights are Jon Robin Baitz, Will Eno, Lisa Kron, Young Jean Lee, Lynn Nottage, and Paula Vogel.

Second Stage Theater is also co-commissioning a new work from Bess Wohl for Broadway, through a partnership with the Williamstown Theatre Festival, and new works for Broadway from Lydia R. Diamond and Dominique Morisseau, which will be developed in association with Kenny Leon's True Colors Theater.

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