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EXIT THE KING Begins Performances 3/7 At The Barrymore


Academy® Award-winners Geoffrey Rush (Shine) as King Berenger and Susan Sarandon (Dead Men Walking) as Queen Marguerite will star in Eugene Ionesco's EXIT THE KING on Broadway. This production marks Rush's Broadway debut. Translated by Neil Armfield and Geoffrey Rush and directed by Neil Armfield, EXIT THE KING will begin performances Saturday, March 7, 2009 at the Barrymore Theatre (243 West 47th Street) and open on Thursday, March 26, 2009. This limited engagement will run for 14 weeks only, through Sunday, June 14, 2009.

EXIT THE KING also stars Screen Actors Guild Award-winner Lauren Ambrose (Awake and Sing!, "Six Feet Under") as Queen Marie, Tony® Award- winner Andrea Martin (My Favorite Year, Young Frankenstein) as Juliette, William Sadler ("Roswell," Julius Caesar) as The Doctor and Brian Hutchison (From Up Here) as The Guard.

EXIT THE KING is a hilarious and poignant comedy about a megalomaniacal ruler, King Berenger (Rush) whose incompetence has left his country in near ruin. Despite the efforts of Queen Marguerite (Sarandon) and the other members of the court to convince the King he has only 90 minutes left to live, he refuses to relinquish any control.

The design team for EXIT THE KING includes Dale Ferguson (Set & Costume), Damien Cooper (Lighting), Russell Goldsmith (Sound). John Rodgers is the Composer.

Geoffrey Rush is appearing with the permission of Actors' Equity Association.
Geoffrey Rush led a critically-acclaimed production of EXIT THE KING, directed by Neil Armfield and produced by Company B and Malthouse Theatre at the CUB Malthouse Theatre in Melbourne, Australia on March 28, 2007 and at Belvoir Street Theatre in Sydney, Australia on June 13, 2007.

Geoffrey Rush (King Berenger and Co-Translator) started his career in Australian theatre and has appeared in over 70 theatrical productions and more than 20 feature films. Rush was catapulted to fame with his starring role in director Scott Hicks' feature Shine, for which he received worldwide accolades: an Academy Award® for Best Actor, a Golden Globe®, SAG, BAFTA, Film Critics' Circle of Australia Award, Broadcast Film Critics, AFI and New York and Los Angeles Film Critics' Awards. In addition, Rush garnered an Emmy®, a Golden Globe® and a Screen Actors Guild Award for his performance as the title character in HBO Films' "The Life and Death of Peter Sellers." He also earned an Academy Award® nomination for his performance in Quills and an Academy Award® nomination and Golden Globe® nomination for his role in Shakespeare in Love. He starred in all three Pirates of the Caribbean films. Most recently, he lent his voice to $9.99, an animated feature based on the existential short stories of Israeli author-filmmaker Etgar Keret. Other film credits include Munich, Elizabeth: The Golden Age, Candy, Intolerable Cruelty, Finding Nemo, Ned Kelly, Lantana, Frida, The Tailor of Panama, Les Miserables, Oscar and Lucinda and Starstruck. His work on stage was honored with the Sydney Critics Circle Award for Most Outstanding Performance, the Variety Club Award for Best Actor and the 1990 Victorian Green Room Award for his performance in Neil Armfield's The Diary of a Madman. He also received Best Actor nominations from the Sydney Critics' Circle Awards for his starring roles in The Government Inspector, Uncle Vanya and Oleanna. In 1994 he received the Sidney Myer Performing Arts Award for his work in theatre. Geoffrey Rush is appearing with the permission of Actors' Equity Association.

Susan Sarandon (Queen Marguerite) won an Academy Award® for her performance in Dead Man Walking. She received a 2008 Golden Globe® nomination and a 2008 Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for her performance as Doris Duke in the HBO film "Bernard and Doris." She received Academy Award® nominations for her roles in Atlantic City, Thelma and Louise, Lorenzo's Oil and The Client. Her other films include The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Bull Durham, The Witches of Eastwick, The Hunger, Stepmom, Anywhere but Here, Cradle Will Rock, The Banger Sisters, Shall We Dance, Alfie, Romance & Cigarettes and Elizabethtown. Her upcoming films include The Lovely Bones, Peacock, Leaves of Grass and The Greatest. She has appeared in many TV films and mini-series and has made special guest appearances on "The Simpsons," "Friends," "Malcolm in the Middle," "Mad TV," "Chappelle's Show" and "Rescue Me." She received Drama Desk nominations for her roles in the Off-Broadway productions of Extremities and A Coupla White Chicks Sitting Around Talking and also starred in The Exonerated Off-Broadway and The Guys Off-Off Broadway. She appeared on Broadway in Gore Vidal's controversial ensemble piece, An Evening with Richard Nixon, in 1972.

Lauren Ambrose (Queen Marie). This year Ambrose performed the role of Ophelia in Hamlet for New York's Public Theater, Shakespeare in the Park Festival and she previously received critical acclaim in the role of Juliet in Romeo & Juliet also for The Public Theater. In the UK, she appeared in Sam Shepard's Buried Child at the National Theater in London. Lauren received a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble in the Tony® award-winning Broadway production of Clifford Odets' Awake and Sing!. She recently completed the Warner Bros. film adaptation of Maurice Sendak's classic children's story, Where the Wild Things Are directed by Spike Jonze. She will next be seen in the starring role of the Hallmark Hall of Fame film "Loving Leah" and in HBO Films "A Dog Year" and has garnered critical praise for the independent feature Starting Out in the Evening that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Ambrose received two Emmy® nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress for her work in the critically acclaimed HBO series "Six Feet Under."

Andrea Martin (Juliette). Broadway: Young Frankenstein (Tony, Drama Desk Award nominations), Fiddler on the Roof, Oklahoma! (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle Award nominations); Candide (Tony, Drama Desk Award nominations); My Favorite Year (Tony, Drama Desk, Theatre World Awards). Off-Broadway: The Exonerated, The Vagina Monologues; Encores!: Out of This World; NYSF: The Merry Wives of Windsor, Nude Nude Totally Nude (Drama Desk Award nomination). Regional: Huntington Theatre: The Rose Tattoo, Betty's Summer Vacation (Elliot Norton and IRNE Awards); Williamstown Theatre Festival: The Royal Family, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Matchmaker; Mark Taper Forum, L.A.: Lips Together, Teeth Apart; Stratford Festival, Canada: Private Lives. Film and television: Black Christmas, New York Minute, My Big Fat Greek Wedding (SAG Award nomination), Hedwig and the Angry Inch, All Over the Guy, Wag the Dog, Stepping Out, The TV Set, The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, The Simpsons, Sesame Street (special Emmy Award), SCTV (two Emmy Awards, writing, Emmy nomination, performing).

William Sadler (The Doctor) is best recognized for his roles in such films as The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, Die Hard II and Kinsey. On television he was a regular on "Wonder Falls" and "Roswell," appeared in the Stephen Spielberg mini-series, "The Pacific," and has been seen on series such as "Third Watch, Las & Order," "Murphy Brown and "Roseanne." Mr. Sadler made his Broadway debut opposite Matthew Broderick in Biloxi Blues, and played the title role in Julius Caesar with Denzel Washington; Off-Broadway credits include Arturo Ui with Al Pacino.

Brian Hutchison (The Guard). Broadway: Proof, The Invention of Love. Off-Broadway: From Up Here (MTC), Oh The Humanity...(Flea Theater), Mr. Marmalade (Roundabout), People Be Heard (Playwrights Horizons), Indoor/Outdoor (SPF, DR2 Theatre), The Hiding Place (Atlantic), Theophilus North, Can't Let Go (Keen Company), She Stoops to Conquer (Irish Rep). Recent regional theatre credits include: Of Mice and Men (Westport),The Front Page (Williamstown), The Unmentionables, Black Snow (Yale Rep), Burn This, The Rivals (Huntington), Barrington Stage, Old Globe. Film and TV: Dealbreaker, "Hope & Faith," "Law & Order: SVU," and "CI". MFA Old Globe/USD.

Neil Armfield (Director and Co-Translator) is the Artistic Director of Sydney's Company B and was involved in its formation. He has worked extensively in Australia and around the world, winning such accolades as the Sydney Theatre Critics' Circle Awards for both Best Director and Best production, the Major Award for Significant Contribution to Sydney Theatre, many Green Room Awards, Australian Film Institute Awards for Best Director for mini-series "Edens Lost" 1989, and for Best Adapted Screenplay with Luke Davies for Candy, 2006 (which starred Geoffrey Rush, Heath Ledger and Abbie Cornish); Helpmann Awards and the Sidney Myer Performing Arts Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Performing Arts in Australia. International awards include Best Production, Dublin Festival for Cloudstreet; Best Director and Best Musical, Dora Mavor Moore Awards, Canada for Billy Budd; and Best Opera Production, Barclays Award for Billy Budd. In 2007, Neil was awarded Officer of the Order of Australia for his service to the arts.

EUGENE IONESCO (Playwright). EXIT THE KING is being presented on the 100th anniversary of Eugene Ionesco's birth. Born on November 26, 1909. Ionesco was known as one of the founders of the Theatre of the Absurd, his plays include The Bald Soprano (1950), The Lesson (1951), The Chairs (1952), The New Tenant (1955) and Rhinoceros (1959).

Tickets are available through Telecharge or in person at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre box office, 243 West 47th Street. Box office hours are Monday through Saturday 10:00am - 8:00pm and Sunday from 12:00pm - 6:00pm (please note the box office will not be open Sunday, March 1).

Ticket prices range from $66.50 to $116.50.

The performance schedule for EXIT THE KING is Tuesday at 7:00pm, Wednesday through Saturday at 8:00pm, Wednesday and Saturday at 2:00pm and Sunday at 3:00pm. Please note that on Tuesdays March 10 and March 24 the curtain is at 8:00pm, and on Sunday, June 7, the curtain is at 2:00pm.



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