Linda Purl, Brett Rickaby and Peter Van Norden to Lead Rubicon Theatre's COPENHAGEN; Sets Sept Opening!
Rubicon Theatre Company just announced stage and screen veterans Linda Purl, Brett Rickaby and Peter Van Norden will star in the company's mainstage production of the Tony-Award winning play COPENHAGEN, directed by international artist Judy Hegarty Lovett.
Written by Michael Frayn, the play centers around an explosive historical conversation that occurred in 1941 when German physicist Werner Heisenberg went to visit his friend and mentor Niels Bohr in Copenhagen. Together, they had revolutionized atomic science, but they found themselves on opposite sides of the equation in World War II.
Rubicon's production is directed by internationally acclaimed international artist Lovett, (Co-Artistic Director of Gare St Lazare Ireland who is considered an expert on the works of Samuel Beckett).
The production stars stage and screen veterans Linda Purl (two Broadway shows/six seasons at Williamstown/recent recurring roles on "True Blood " and "Homeland"), Brett Rickaby (The Public and Shakespeare in the Park in NYC/recurring roles on "True Blood" and "Dexter"), and Peter Van Norden (five Broadway shows, dozens of television and film roles).
Sets and projections are designed by Trefoni Michael Rizzi (Ovation and Indy for Rubicon's Songs for a New World), lighting design is by Mike Billings (Conviction and The Last Five Years at Rubicon, numerous shows at Bay Street Theatre), Sound by Tony nominee and L.A. Drama Critics Circle Award-winner Cricket S. Myers (Bengal Tiger) and Costumes by Marcy Froehlich (Rubicon's Man of La Mancha and Last Train to Nibroc). Linda M. Tross (Rubicon's Lonesome Traveler Off-Broadway) is Production Stage Manager.
COPENHAGEN was written in 1998, and was immediately hailed as an imaginative and important recreation of the historical and mysterious meeting between former friends and colleagues Werner Heisenberg and Niels Bohr. COPENHAGEN earned "Best Play" honors at the 1998 Evening Standard Awards. The Broadway production opened in 2000 directed by Michael Blakemore with Philip Bosco as Bohr, Blair Brown as Margrethe, and Michael Cumptsy as Heisenberg. The production earned three Tony Awards including Best Play.
COPENHAGEN was recently recorded for BBC Radio in 2013 with Simon Russell Beale, Benedict Cumberbatch and Greta Scacchi. In interviews, Frayn has said he was attracted to the subject matter because, "it seemed to encapsulate something about the difficulty of knowing why people do what they do. There is a parallel between that and the impossibility that Heisenberg established in physics - the impossibility of ever knowing everything about the behavior of physical objects."
Says Rubicon Producing Artistic Director Karyl Lynn Burns, "As the content of this famous conversation clearly culminated in Bohr and Heisenberg severing what had long been a professionally productive and personally important relationship, there has long been speculation as to the specific content of the meeting. Michael Frayn has created a construct where the characters revisit the meeting after their deaths. The conversation is repeatedly revisited in the course of the play, allowing characters and audience alike to examine the issues raised from a shifting perspective each time the story begins anew."
"This is a play of ideas, ingeniously exploring the profound moral and ideological questions raised by the atomic technology being developed during World War II," adds Burns. It allows us to gaze into the chasm created when moral responsibility, personal emotions and patriotism clash."
"The devices of shifting perspective, recurring imagery and retrospect allow the audience to become completely immersed in the journey of these characters as they struggle for agreement, understanding and reconciliation."
COPENHAGEN is the final drama in Rubicon Theatre Company's 17th mainstage season, entitled "The Search..." Low-priced previews begin Wednesday, September 2 at 7:00 p.m. The press night is Friday, September 11 (or press may alternatively attend the weekend of September 12 and 13). COPENHAGEN continues through September 27, with performances Wednesdays at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., Thursdays at 8:00 p.m., Fridays at 8:00 p.m., Saturdays at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. (except September 5, when the evening show begins at 7:00 p.m.), and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. Rubicon Theatre is located 1006 E. Main in Ventura's Downtown Cultural District, with low-priced previews beginning January 2. For tickets and information, call (805) 667-2900 or go to www.rubicontheatre.org.
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
MICHAEL FRAYN is a British playwright, novelist, columnist, reporter and translator. In addition to COPENHAGEN, Frayn is best known for his plays Noises Off and Democracy. His novels, such as "Towards the End of the Morning," "Headlong" and "Spies" have also been received acclaim and numerous awards, making Frayn one of a small group of English writers to succeed in both drama and prose fiction. He has also written philosophical works, such as "Constructions" and "The Human Touch: Our Part in the Creation of the Universe."
Michael Frayn was born in the suburbs of London in 1933 and raised in Ewell, Surrey. His mother was a violinist and his father, who was deaf, was a representative for a roofing materials firm. Frayn attended private school until his mother died (when Frayn was just 12), then transferred to public school, where his aptitude for music and poetry was encouraged. By the time Frayn was a teen, he knew he wanted to be a writer.
Frayn spent two years in National Service, during which time he learned Russian. He then attended the University of Cambridge, graduating in 1957 with a degree in Moral Sciences (Philosophy). He began his writing career as a reporter and columnist for the Manchester Guardian (1957-62) and The Observer (1962-68). His satirical essays were considered comic masterpieces and were published as collections in the 1980s. A number of them were adapted and performed for BBC Radio 4 by Martin Jarvis. During his newspaper years, Frayn also wrote several novels, including "The Tin Men," "The Russian Interpreter," and "A Very Private Life."
Frayn's first play was an evening of short plays entitled The Two of Us, starring Lynne Redgrave and Richard Briars. Frayn's next play Alphabetical Order won the Evening Standard Award for "Best Comedy of the Year." Other successes followed: Clouds (1976), Donkey's Years (1977), and Make or Break (1980), which also won the Evening Standard Award. Frayn won a third Evening Standard Award for "Best Comedy of the Year" for Noises Off, which ran for four years in London's West End. The production opened on Broadway in 1995. It returned to Broadway in 2002, and a new production has been announced for the 2016 Broadway Season. COPENHAGEN was written in 1998 (see above).
Frayn is considered Britain's leading interpreter of the works of Anton Chekhov. He has translated The Cherry Orchard, Three Sisters, Uncle Vanya, Wild Honey (Chekhov's first untitled play), and a number of Chekhov's smaller plays for an evening called The Sneeze (originally presented in the West End with Rowan Atkinson). He also translated Yuri Trifonov's play Exchange, Leo Tolstoy's The Fruits of Enlightenment, and Jean Anouilh's Number One.
Frayn's first screenplay "Clockwise," featured John Cleese, and his second film "First and Last," starring Tom Wilkinson, won an international Emmy Award. The film adaptation of Noises Off was produced in the U.S., and several other Frayn plays were adapted and filmed for UK television. One of Frayn's novels, "A Landing on the Sun," was presented on the BBC in 1994, and his "Headlong," was a contender for the Booker Prize. Frayn's Democracy premiered at the National Theatre and transferred to the West End in 2003-2004, opening on Broadway in the 2004-2005 Season. Afterlife opened at the Lyttelton Theatre in 2008 starring Roger Allam. In 2010, Frayn wrote My Father's Fortune: A Life, a memoir of his childhood.
ABOUT THE ACTORS
LINDA PURL (Margethe Bohr) appeared on Broadway in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Getting and Spending. Off-Broadway, her credits include The Baby Dance and Hallelujah, Hallelujah! Regional theatre credits include Romeo and Juliet, Oliver, Grease, Camille, Same Time Next Year, On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, The Threepenny Opera, Hedda Gabler, The Real Thing, The Little Foxes, The Merchant of Venice, A Streetcar Named Desire, Hippolytus, The Glass Menagerie, Nora (with Michael York), the original production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play Dinner with Friends, Beyond Therapy, The Road to Mecca (with Miss Julie Harris), A Doll's House, Nora, The Year of Magical Thinking, and Love, Loss and What I Wore. Linda has performed at theatres such as as Long Wharf, Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Old Globe, Mark Taper Forum, South Coast Repertory, Santa Fe Opera, Cleveland Playhouse, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Laguna Playhouse, The Lensic in Santa Fe, Berkeley Rep, Williamstown Theatre Festival (six seasons), Theatre Princesse Grace, (Monte Carlo, Monaco), Imperial Theatre (Tokyo, Japan), and Rubicon. Recent running roles on television series have been on CBS' "Reckless," "True Blood" (as Barbara Pelt), "The Office" (as Helene Beasley) and the Golden Globe Award-winning series "Homeland" (as Elizabeth Gaines). Linda has starred in over 45 Made-for-TV movies, and is especially known for her series roles as Charlene Matlock on "Matlock" and Ashley Pfister, Fonzie's fiancée, on "Happy Days."As a film actress, Linda has appeared in Disney's "Mighty Joe Young," "The Walking Major" and "Leo and Loree." Additionally she has appeared in the independent films "Sundays," "Bender Claim" and the sci-fi classic "Time Travelers." Linda has performed in concerts at venues in New York, London and Thousand Oaks and has recorded three solo albums. Ms. Purl trained at Toho Geino Academy, Tokyo, LAMDA, Neighborhood Playhouse and Lee Strasberg Institute. She is Founding Director of the California International Theatre Festival.
BRETT RICKABY (Werner Heisenberg) lived and worked out of New York for a number of years after receiving his MFA from NYU, performing in numerous productions at The Public Theatre and Shakespeare in the Park. Stage credits include productions on and Off-Broadway, as well as regional credits at theatres such as The Roundabout, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Soho Rep, Asolo, La Mama and The American Jewish Theater. Brett played Jigger Craig in in the National Tour of the Nicholas Hytner directed Carousel, after which he moved to L.A. He has since made a career of playing ne'er-do-wells and emotionally charged characters on television and film. He has had recurring roles on "True Blood" and "Dexter," played Charlie Blanche in Seth MacFarland's "A Million Ways to Die in the West," and appeared in the recent remake of Wes Craven's "The Crazies." Other highlights include the role of The Riddler in CBS's "Return to the Batcave" and Ray Berry in the NSA thriller "Tentacle 8." Brett's film credits also include "On the Doll," "The Assassination of Richard Nixon," "How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog," "Zodiac," "Little Chenier," "Bad Blood" and "Villisca." Recent television appearances include "Grey's Anatomy," "Castle," "Longmire," "C.S.I.," "Eagleheart," "NCIS," "Southland," "The Good Guys" and "Memphis Beat." Brett received his BFA from University of Minnesota, Duluth, winning numerous honors including The National Irene Ryan Award and a scholarship to NYU. Brett wrote and produced the plays 70 Dollars to a Bus Ride Home (Hudson Avenue Theatre) and Asylum (The Court Theatre). He has also published two books, and is currently in pre-production on a full-length feature he wrote entitled "Mojave," which he will direct. He has been teaching the craft of acting for over ten years and in 2013 opened Inside Job Acting Studio. Brett, his wife, and their two children live in L.A. He is thrilled to be on stage at Rubicon.
PETER VAN NORDEN (Niels Bohr) was seen most recently as Don Reyo in Serrano, the Musical at the Matrix, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in Flim Flam at Malibu Playhouse, Shylock in The Merchant of Venice at L.A. Shakespeare Center, William Randolph Hearst in the musical W.R. and Daisy at Annenberg Ctr./Grand Performances, The Liar at Antaeus (where he is aa long-time company member), Willie Clark in The Sunshine Boys at Arizona Theatre Company, Henry Kissinger in Top Secret: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers for L.A. Theatre Works (as well as the New York Theatre Workshop and China tour), and as Edna Turnblad in Hairspray at San Diego Rep. At the Getty Villa, he appeared in The Wasps and Tug of War. Other favorite roles include Inspector Truscott in Loot (for which he won the Backstage West Garland Award for Best Actor), Mr. Mister in The Cradle Will Rock, John Barrymore in Mr. Shaw Goes to Hollywood at The Blank, and Eliot Rosewater in God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater at The Matrix. His credits in his native New York City include Little Johnny Jones (with Donny Osmond), Hamlet (with both Kevin Kline and Sam Waterston), Jungle of Cities (with Al Pacino), Henry V (with Meryl Streep) and Saint Joan (with the late, great Lynn Redgrave). Peter has also worked at many of the nation's most prestigious regional rep companies, including The Globe Theatre, San Diego Rep, San Jose Rep (where he won the Bay Area Theatre Critics Award for his performance as Andrew Laguna Playhouse, Center Stage, Seattle Rep, Intiman Theatre, and Berkeley Rep. Included among his dozens of film and television roles are leads opposite Oscar-Winner Jodie Foster in "The Accused," as Steve Guttenberg's inept partner in "Police Academy 2," as Ralph Brentner in the Stephen King mini-series "The Stand," and as one of the leads in the recently completed "West Virginia Stories."
ABOUT THE DIRECTOR
JUDY HEGARTY LOVETT (Director) has a BA in Fine Art from the Crawford College of Art & Design (Cork). She studied Theatre with Philippe Gaulier in London. She joined Gare St Lazare Players Chicago in Paris in 1991as an assistant to Artistic Director Bob Meyer. In 1996, Judy directed Conor Lovett in Molloy by Samuel Beckett in London and so began Gare St Lazare Ireland. She has directed 16 Beckett titles, including Waiting for Godot, Rockaby, The Beckett Trilogy (Molloy, Malone Dies and The Unnamable), Lessness, Enough, Texts for Nothing, Worstward Ho, All That Fall, Embers, Cascando, Words and Music, The Old Tune by Robert Pinget (translated by Samuel Beckett), Rough for Radio 1 & 2, First Love, The Calmative and The End, and Here All Night (a creation with music and texts by Beckett and original music by composer Paul Clark). Other directing credits include Title and Deed by Will Eno (American Premiere at Signature Theatre NYC and West Coast premiere at Rubicon), Moby Dick (adapted by Judy Hegarty Lovett and Conor Lovett), Swallow by Michael Harding, Tanks a Lot (co-written by Judy Hegarty Lovett and Raymond Keane), and The Good Thief by Conor McPherson (Rubicon Theatre and on tour). Judy's work has toured to over 150 theatres in over 60 venues in Ireland and over 80 cities around the world. She has won awards for Moby Dick in China, Molloy in Germany, and The Good Thief in the U.S. In 2013, the Off-Broadway production of Title and Deed was nominated for Outstanding Solo Performance at the Lucille Lortel Awards. In 2015, Judy was a Best Director nominee for the Off-West End Awards for First Love by Samuel Beckett.
Low-priced previews of COPENHAGEN begin on Wednesday, September 2 at 7 p.m., continuing Thursday, September 3 at 8 p.m. and Friday, September 4 at 8 p.m. Press night is Friday, September 11 (media tickets also available September 12 and 13). Regular performances are Wednesdays at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., (except Saturday, September 5, which is at 7:00 p.m.) and Sundays at 2 p.m. Talkbacks with the actors are scheduled after Wednesday 7 p.m. performances on September 9, 16 and 23.
Pre-show 30-minute Powerpoint presentations and discussions on quantum mechanics as it relates to the ideas in COPENHAGEN will be presented prior to the Friday night performances at 7:00 p.m. downstairs in the rehearsal room (enter through the Laurel door). Presentations will be made by Dr. David Bernard on Friday September 4 and Friday, September 18; and by Dr. Brent Meeker on September 11 and September 25. Individuals may attend on the evening of their performance or on a night other than the night for which they hold tickets. Admission is free.
Tickets for COPENHAGEN range from $25 to $64. Tickets for students are $20, and student rush tickets are available for $15. Discounts are available for groups of 12 or more.
Tickets for COPENHAGEN may be purchased in person through the Rubicon Theatre Company Box Office at the corner of Main and Laurel in Ventura (Laurel entrance and downstairs) or online at www.rubicontheatre.org. To charge by phone, call 805.667.2900.
Rubicon Theatre Company has been described as, "the rising star of the Southern California cultural constellation." A not-for-profit professional regional theatre with over 1,600 subscribers, Rubicon serves area residents and visitors with innovative productions of classic and contemporary plays, as well as a wide array of educational programs and events. Acclaimed by critics and industry professionals (the company has received the L.A. Drama Critics Margaret Harford Special Award for "Sustained Excellence," a Drama Desk Award for the Off-Broadway production of The Best is Yet To Come, and has won more than 20 Ovation Awards from the L.A. Stage Alliance. During the 2014-2015 Season, three Rubicon shows have transferred to New York (Wiesenthal - Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Award nominations; Lonesome Traveler - Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Award nominations; and Daddy Long Legs - opening in September). Rubicon has welcomed a steady stream of high-profile actors and directors. Ed Asner, David Birney, Susan Clark, Dana Delaney, Nancy Dussault, Conchata Ferrell, Bonnie Franklin, Harold Gould, Joel Grey, Larry Hagman, Bill Irwin, Stacy Keach, Jack Lemmon, Donna McKechnie, Amanda McBroom, Ted Neeley, Paul Provenza, Linda Purl, Rondi Reed, John Ritter, Joe Spano, Bruce Weitz, JoBeth Williams, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Stephanie Zimbalist and other luminaries have graced the Rubicon stage. Company members are George Ball, Joseph Fuqua and Jenny Sullivan.
Based in Ventura's Downtown Cultural District, just blocks from the Pacific Ocean, Rubicon occupies a 185-seat historic church built in the 1920s. In this renovated historic landmark, audience members are never further than 10 rows from the stage on the main floor. (The balcony, which seats twenty, is an excellent setting for private parties or corporate groups.)
True to the company's name and the vision of artistic directors Karyl Lynn Burns and James O'Neil, Rubicon has created an environment where commitment and risk are encouraged, and where artists are nurtured and respected. As a result, the company has gained a reputation for invigorating interpretations of the classics and for supporting the development of new works. Rubicon presents at least one World Premiere each season, as well as readings of works-in-progress.
Deeply rooted in the region it serves, Rubicon offers extensive outreach programs, including daytime matinees for high school students, after-school and weekend programs for at-risk youth, and summer musical theatre, drama and technical camps. More than 40,000 students have benefited.
A board of directors of prominent social and civic leaders governs Rubicon. The company is also supported by an advisory group of regional ambassadors and a volunteer auxiliary with nearly 300 members.
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