Kudisch, Sills, Luker, Von Essen, Irving Cast in Shaw Project's Fanny's First Play, Feb. 27

Fanny's First Play, the second entry in the ambitious Shaw Project, will be a starry affair. Rebecca Luker, George S. Irving, Doug Sills, Marc Kudisch, Jonathan Freeman, Max von Essen, Danielle Ferland and Cynthia Harris have been cast in the play, which will be presented on February 27th.

Irving, Kudisch and Harris were previously seen together in Arms and the Man, the inaugural play of The Shaw Project,
which will put the works of George Bernard Shaw--as performed by star-studded casts--in front of theatregoers in 2006 and 2007. Fanny's First Play, which is considered one of Shaw's lesser works, concerns the young woman of the title. Once sheltered by an eccentric count who has raised her as if they lived in the 18th century, Fanny writes a play while attending Cambridge. Critics Howard Kissel (The Daily News), Patrick Pacheco (Los Angeles Times), Michael Riedel (New York Post) and Robert Osborne (The Hollywood Reporter) will also be featured in the show--as naturally, the four critics who attend the private performance of Fanny's play.

Other actors who are scheduled to appear in Shaw plays during the course of the two-year festival will include Veanne Cox, Raul Esparza, Michael Cerveris, Olympia Dukakis, Marian Seldes, John McMartin,
Joel Grey, Arlene Dahl, Chad Kimball, Julie Halston, Charles Busch, Ed Dixon, Charlotte Moore, Ciaran O'Reilly and Simon Jones.

The Shaw Project is captained by David Staller (Mrs. Warren's Profession at the Irish Rep), who will produce and direct the following currently-scheduled plays: Heartbreak House on March 20th, You Never Can Tell on April 17th, the one-acts Overruled and Augustus Does His Bit on May 8th, Getting Married on June 19th, John Bull's Other Island on July 17th, The Apple Cart on September 18th, Misalliance on October 23rd, Captain Brassbound's Conversion on November 20th and The Philanderer on December 18th. All the readings will be held at 7 PM on Monday, with the exception of the two one-acts (which will be presented at noon).

The Irish born Shaw, who died at age 94 in 1950, is one of the most prolific writers of plays, books and treatises in the English language. His unyielding stand for human rights, particularly for women's rights, has become legendary. He encouraged general political awareness and the need for people to take responsibility for their own lives.

The public can make reservations by calling The Players Club at 212-475-6116. The Gingold Theatrical Group can be reached at 212-355-7823 and the website at www.theshawproject.com.

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