Arkin, Baker, Pawk Star in MTC's Losing Louie; Opens 10/12

By: Aug. 17, 2006
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Manhattan Theatre Club (Lynne Meadow, artistic director; Barry Grove, executive producer) is pleased to announce full casting for the American premiere of Simon Mendes da Costa's LOSING LOUIE at the Biltmore Theatre. Previews for LOSING LOUIE begin Thursday, September 21 for a Thursday, October 12 opening.

Four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks will direct the production which will star (in alphabetical order): Matthew Arkin (Reggie), Scott Cohen (Louie), Mark Linn-Baker (Tony), Patricia Kalember (Elizabeth), Michele Pawk (Sheila), Ana Reeder (Bobbie), Jama Williamson (Bella).

How do our childhood memories affect our lives? How do the mistakes of one generation impact the next? And most importantly, why does love make us do such crazy things? Interwoven events from the past and present blend together in this wise and witty new play, as two generations of family members work things out in the same bedroom, fifty years apart.

The creative team for LOSING LOUIE includes: John Lee Beatty (scenic design), Paul Gallo (lighting design), William Ivey Long (costume design), and Dan Moses Schreier (sound design).

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Subscriptions to MTC can be obtained by calling (212) 399-3030, Monday - Friday, noon - 8 PM with a major credit card. Subscriptions are also available online at Single tickets ($86.25 - $26.25) for LOSING LOUIE will be available starting Monday, August 21 by calling at 212-239-6200 or at Starting Tuesday, September 5, tickets will be available at the Biltmore Theatre box office (261 West 47th Street).


Simon Mendes da COSTA (Playwright) Losing Louie is Mendes da Costa's Second Staged play. His first, Table for One, which he produced himself, was performed at the Hen & Chickens Theatre, Islington in North London in November 2001 (Time Out London's Critic's Choice). Losing Louie started its life at Hampstead Theatre which is situated in Swiss Cottage in North London and it subsequently moved to the West End after a sell out run, breaking Hampstead Theatre's all time box office record. It played in the West End for four months, which was followed by a sell out tour. Simon came to writing via a circuitous route. He originally trained as a Civil Engineer but decided to leave that behind and become an estate agent, by his own admission not one of his best decisions. He then retrained as a computer programmer before deciding to change careers once again and become an actor. He received a two-year acting diploma at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School graduating in 1991. After a number of years working as an actor he ended up, almost by chance, attending a small writing group in Crouch End, a small suburb in North London, and for no other reason than he knew somebody who went there and rather liked them! The only way to stay part of the group was to write, so that's what he did. Simon was nominated for 2006's Most Promising Playwright at the Evening Standard Awards in London. Simon has also written two plays for children both of which were performed at the studio in Hampstead Theatre, and is currently working again with Hampstead on a new commission for the main house, details of which he can't disclose because he maintains he doesn't know them himself.

Jerry Zaks (Director) has received four Tony Awards, four Drama Desk Awards, two Outer Critics Circle Awards, an Obie Award and an NAACP Image Award nomination. He served as resident director at Lincoln Center Theater from 1986-1990 and is a founding member of the Ensemble Studio Theatre. Mr. Zaks has directed more than 30 New York productions including, Broadway: The House of Blue Leaves (Tony Award, Drama Desk Award), The Front Page, Anything Goes (Tony nomination, Drama Desk nomination), Lend Me a Tenor (Tony Award, Drama Desk Award), Six Degrees of Separation (Tony Award, Drama Desk Award), Guys and Dolls (Tony Award, Drama Desk Award), Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Smokey Joe's Cafe (Tony nomination, Olivier nomination), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Tony nomination), The Man Who Came to Dinner, 45 Seconds From Broadway and Little Shop of Horrors; Off-Broadway: Sister Mary Ignatius, Beyond Therapy, Baby With the Bathwater, The Foreigner (Obie Award), The Marriage of Bette and Boo (Obie Award, Drama Desk Award), Wenceslas Square, Square One, Assassins (Drama Desk nomination), A Bad Friend as well as the Encores! production of Bye Bye Birdie. Mr. Zaks also directed the award-winning film Marvin's Room, starring Meryl Streep and Diane Keaton, and episodes of the long-running hit comedies "Everybody Loves Raymond" and "Frasier." Mr. Zaks is a graduate of Dartmouth with an MFA from Smith. He received the George Abbott Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre in 1994 and an honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from Dartmouth in 1999. Since 1990 he has been proudly affiliated with Jujamcyn Theaters.

Matthew Arkin (Reggie) is returning to Manhattan Theatre Club after starring in the Off-Broadway production of Ron Hutchinson's Moonlight & Magnolias, directed by Lynne Meadow. He is currently starring in the Primary Stage production of A.R. Gurney's Indian Blood. On Broadway, he starred in Neil Simon's Laughter on the 23rd Floor and The Sunshine Boys (with Jack Klugman and Tony Randall). Off-Broadway: Dinner with Friends (Drama Desk nomination), You Should Be So Lucky, OY!, The King of Carpets and The Roadblock. Regional theatre: Rounding Third at Chicago's Northlight Theatre, Talley's Folly, Guys and Dolls, Sheer Boredom, A Thousand Clowns, Lost in Yonkers, Little Footsteps, Two Rooms, True West, Self Defense, Joan of Lorraine, and Sight Unseen. Film: Death to Smoochy; Liar, Liar; North; An Unmarried Woman; and Chu Chu and the Philly Flash; Second Best, Counting Sheep and The Curse. TV: Legal Aid Attorney Paul Bernard on A&E's "100 Centre Street," "The Education of Max Bickford," "Ed," "Law & Order," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," "The Street," "Simple Justice," "Law & Order: SVU," "Kojak," "The Defection of Simas Kudirka" and "All My Children."

Scott Cohen (Louie) will be making his Broadway debut in Losing Louie. Cohen returns to Manhattan Theatre Club after starring in the Off-Broadway production of Warren Leight's Glimmer, Glimmer and Shine, directed by Evan Yionoulis. He recently starred in the ABC television movie "Fatal Contact: Bird Flu in America." Other television credits include "Law & Order: Trial By Jury," "The 10th Kingdom" (NBC), "NYPD Blue," "Gilmore Girls," "Gia" (HBO), "Gotti" (HBO), "Perfect Murder-Perfect Town" (CBS), "Law & Order" (NY/LA Trilogy), and Camryn Manheim's "Kiss My Act." Mr. Cohen's other stage work includes The Big Knife and La Ronde (WTF) both directed by JoAnne Woodward, The American Clock (WTF), The Crucible (Roundabout), Jitta's Atonement (BTF), Natural History by Anastasia Traina and Wibbly Wobbly Wiggly Dance by Terrence McNally (Naked Angels). Films include The Mambo Kings, Jacob's Ladder, Private Parts, A Brother's Kiss and Kissing Jessica Stein.

Patricia Kalember (Elizabeth) previously appeared in the Manhattan Theatre Club production of Arthur Kopit's Y2K. Broadway: The Nerd. Off-Broadway: Sea of Tranquility (Atlantic Theatre Company), From Above (Playwrights Horizons), The Foreigner, Loose Knit (Second Stage). Regional: Betrayal (Berkshire Theater Festival); The Miser, Cyrano de Bergerac and The Front Page (Baltimore's Center Stage); Current Events (New York Stage & Film, director David Petrarca). Her many films include A Time For Dancing, Home Before Dark, Jump, Labor Pains, Killing Cinderella, Big Girls Don't Cry…They Get Even, and Jacob's Ladder, among others. Television: appearances on "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "The Equalizer," "Early Edition," "Michael Hayes." TV films: "Little Girl Lost," "Final Run," "When Husbands Cheat," "Living a Lie." Series regular: "Sisters," "Thirtysomething," "Kay O'Brian."

Mark Linn-Baker (Tony) most recently starred in the WB television series "Twins." Broadway: A Year With Frog and Toad, Hysterium in Forum (Drama League Honor), Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Face Value, Doonesbury. Encores!: Heinzie in The Pajama Game. NYSF: All's Well That Ends Well, Othello, Von Richthofen, The Laundry Hour, Alice in Concert (with Meryl Streep). Off-Broadway: Chesapeake (Drama Desk/Outer Critics Circle nominations), A Flea in Her Ear (Drama League Honor), The Miss Firecracker Contest, Maybe I'm Doing It Wrong, EST, LaMaMa, MTC, West Bank Theater, Phoenix Theatre. Regional: Yale Rep, ART Cambridge (founding member), Arena, Center Stage. Film: Woody Allen's Manhattan, My Favorite Year, Noises Off. Television: seven years as Larry Appleton on "Perfect Strangers"; "Laughter on the 23rd Floor"; guest appearances on "Ally McBeal," "Law & Order," "Soul Man," "Spin City," "Sesame Street," "Family Matters," "Full House," "Cooper," "Miami Vice," "Moonlighting." Co-founder/co-director of NY Stage and Film Company and is married to set designer and Broadway producer Adrianne Lobel.

Michele Pawk (Sheila). Broadway: Mamma Mia!, Hollywood Arms (Tony Award: Best Featured Actress in a Play), Chicago, Seussical, Cabaret (Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle nominations), Triumph of Love, Crazy for You (Drama Desk nomination), Mail. Off-Broadway: Jon Robin Baitz' The Paris Letter (Drama Desk nomination), Reefer Madness, After the Fair, Hello Again, Merrily We Roll Along, john & jen, A Little Night Music (New York City and Los Angeles Opera). Regional: Bounce (Helen Hayes nomination), Hollywood Arms, Dirt, A Class Act (Japan), Oedipus-Private Eye, The Gig. Film: Cradle Will Rock, Jeffrey, The Girl in the Watermelon, Flight of Black Angel. Television includes: "Law & Order," "Law & Order: SVU," "Quantum Leap," "Dear John," "Golden Girls." Recordings: Bounce, Seussical, Cabaret, Crazy for You, After the Fair, Hello Again, Merrily We Roll Along, Lost in Boston III, Broadway Bound, The Stephen Schwartz Album, The Stephen Sondheim Album and The Sherman Brothers Album and numerous recordings of books on tape for Simon & Schuster.

Ana Reeder (Bobbie) returns to the Biltmore Theatre following her critically acclaimed performance as Grete in the Manhattan Theatre Club's Broadway production of Donald Margulies' Sight Unseen. She also appeared in the MTC productions of Humble Boy and An Experiment With an Air Pump. Other New York theatre: The Wooden Breeks (MCC); Hedda Gabler (NYTW); Small Tragedy (Playwrights Horizons); The Time of the Cuckoo (Lincoln Center); Some Voices (The New Group); Killers and Other Family (Rattlestick Theatre); Maid (Lincoln Center Festival); Fire Eater (New York Stage and Film); Macbeth (The Public); Henry VIII (Delacourt Theater). London: The Distance from Here (Almeida Theatre). Washington D.C.: The Tempest (The Shakespeare Theatre). TV: "Law & Order," "Katie Joplin." Upcoming: "The Jury." Film: Diary of a City Priest, Acts of Worship (Independent Spirit Award nomination; Best Actress, Santa Barbara Film Festival), Marie and Bruce. MFA: NYU.

Jama Williamson (Bella) will be making her Broadway debut in Losing Louie. She appeared as Roberta in the musicalization of the classic adult film Debbie Does Dallas. Other Off-Broadway: Spanish Girl (Second Stage), Eat the Runt (American Place). Other NYC theatre credits include Seascape with Sharks and Dancer (HERE) and Love Machine (TSI). Film & TV: "The Chapelle Show," "Law & Order," Mergers and Acquisitions, Eye of the Storm, The Dry Season. B.A. in communications and theatre from the University of Notre Dame and training from Circle in the Square.