'Sweet Bird,' 'Late-Night Cabaret' to Play Williamstown

The Williamstown Theatre Festival will open its production of Tennessee Williams' Sweet Bird of Youth on the Main Stage with performances beginning July 19.  It runs through July 30.

The production stars Margaret Colin (Defiance, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg) as Princess Kosmonopolis and Derek Cecil ("Push Nevada," "Pasadena") as Chance Wayne. Also starring are Betsy Aidem ("Law & Order," "The High Life") as Miss Lucy, Gerry Bamman (Uncle Vanya) as Boss Finley, Tony Award-nominee Beth Fowler (The Boy from Oz, Sweeney Todd) as Aunt Nonnie, Ted Koch (The Pillowman, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof) as George Scudder, Christopher Evan Welch (Festen, The Crucible) as Tom Junior, and Bess Wohl (Heights, Must Love Dogs) as Heavenly Finley.

The production is directed by David Jones.  It will feature sets by Derek McLane, costumes by Ilona Somogyi, lighting by David Weiner, and original music and sound design by John Gromada. 

Sweet Bird of Youth "tells the story of Chance Wayne, a once attractive and popular youth whose looks have faded and whose hopes for stardom have dwindled. Chance has returned to his hometown with an old Hollywood star, whom he met while working as a masseur in Florida. He has come back to reconcile with his first love, Heavenly, and to convince the Hollywood star to sign him and Heavenly as the leads in a new movie," state press notes.  "But Heavenly's father—a powerful, bigger-than-life local politician—" does not want to let that happen.

Sweet Bird of Youth was performed at the Festival in 1985 in a production starring Maria Tucci and Maxwell Caufield and directed by Michael Bloom.   Excerpts were performed as part of Tennessee Williams: A Celebration starring Joyce Ebert and Daniel Hugh-Kelly and directed by Nikos Psacharopoulos.

In addition, the popular "Late-Night Cabaret" plays July 13- 15 on the Nikos Stage. 

The "Cabaret" features singing, dancing, stand-up comedy and spontaneous performances.  The Cabaret is directed by Sam Breslin Wright with musical direction by Kris Kukul.  Announced performers include stars of the Festival's production of Anything Goes:  Remy Auberjonois (The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow), Catherine Brunell (Big River, Thoroughly Modern Millie), Matt Cavenaugh (Urban Cowboy), Nikki Renee Daniels (Aida, Nine, upcoming Les Miserables), Tony-nominee Malcolm Gets (Amour, A New Brain), as well as Beth Fowler and Gloria Reuben ("ER," A Nervous Smile at Williamstown).

The "Cabaret" also features performances from members of the Non-Equity and Apprentice companies of the Festival.    Performers are subject to change. 

The "Cabaret" plays Thursday, July 13 and Friday, July 14 at 11 pm and Saturday, July 15 at 11:30.  Tickets are $25 and available by phone at 413.597.3400, at the Festival Box Office and at www.wtfestival.org.

The "Late-Night Cabaret" will offer a second edition later in the Festival August 10-12 featuring different performers. 

Sweet Bird of Youth performances are Tuesdays – Fridays at 8:00, Saturdays at 8:30, with matinees Thursdays at 3:00, Saturdays at 4:00 and Sundays at 2:00 . 

Tickets are available by phone at 413.597.3400, at the Festival Box Office and at www.wtfestival.org

Williamstown Theatre Festival performances are held at The '62 Center for Theatre and Dance of Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts.


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