THE COLLABORATION Starring Paul Bettany & Jeremy Pope Begins Performances Tonight

The Collaboration opens on Tuesday, December 20 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre.

By: Nov. 30, 2022
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THE COLLABORATION Starring Paul Bettany & Jeremy Pope Begins Performances Tonight
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Performances begin tonight for the Manhattan Theatre Club's production of The Collaboration, by special arrangement with Eleanor Lloyd Productions, Anthology Theatre, Stanley Buchthal, and Denis O'Sullivan. The Collaboration is written by Anthony McCarten and directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah, and features Paul Bettany, Jeremy Pope, Krysta Rodriguez and Erik Jensen.

The Collaboration opens on Tuesday, December 20 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street).

Warhol. Basquiat. Electric, eccentric, polar opposites... together, for the first time in the most unlikely partnership the art world has ever seen. Paul Bettany (The Avengers, "WandaVision," "A Very British Scandal") and Jeremy Pope (Choir Boy, Ain't Too Proud, The Inspection) star in the thrilling American premiere of the London sensation.

In the summer of 1984, longtime international superstar Andy Warhol and the art scene's newest wunderkind, Jean-Michel Basquiat, agree to work together on what may be the most talked about exhibition in the history of modern art. But can these two creative giants co-exist, or even thrive? The stage is their canvas in this sizzling tour-de-force by Anthony McCarten (four-time Oscar®-nominated writer of The Two Popes and Bohemian Rhapsody), directed by the acclaimed Kwame Kwei-Armah (Artistic Director of London's Young Vic).

The Collaboration's creative team includes Anna Fleischle (Set & Costume Design), Ben Stanton (Lighting Design), Emma Laxton (Sound Design), Duncan McLean (Projection Design), Karicean "Karen" Dick & Carol Robinson (Wig Design), Ayanna Witter-Johnson (Original Music), Deborah Hecht (Dialect & Vocal Coach), James Latus (Production Stage Manager).

The world premiere of The Collaboration was originally produced by the Young Vic Theatre London in January-March 2022 in partnership with Eleanor Lloyd, Anthology Theatre, Stanley Buchthal and Eilene Davidson in association with Denis O'Sullivan.


For all performance weeks of The Collaboration from first preview through and including December 30, 2022 masks will be required on Tuesday evenings and Sunday matinees. All other performances will be mask optional but strongly encouraged.

The 2022-23 season marks Lynne Meadow's 50th Anniversary as Artistic Director of MANHATTAN THEATRE CLUB. Meadow was joined by Executive Producer Barry Grove in her third season, and together they have helmed MTC for 48 years. MTC's mission, which Meadow created in 1972 and has implemented since, is to develop and present new work in a dynamic, supportive environment; to identify and collaborate with the most exciting new as well as accomplished artists; and to produce a diverse repertoire of innovative, entertaining, and thought-provoking plays and musicals by American and international playwrights. Since 1989, MTC Education, which uses the power of live theatre and playwriting to awaken minds, ignite imaginations, open hearts, and change lives, has also been an important part of our work.

Over five decades, MTC has grown from a small off-off-Broadway showcase into one of the country's most prestigious and award-winning theatre companies, creating approximately 600 world, American, New York and Broadway premieres. Our productions have earned 7 Pulitzer Prizes, 28 Tony Awards, 50 Drama Desk Awards and 49 Obie Awards amongst many other honors. Our Broadway home is the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street) and our two Off-Broadway theatres are at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street). MTC is an anti-racist organization that respects and honors all voices, and upholds the values of community and equity.

Paul Bettany

(Andy Warhol). Bettany was classically trained at the Drama Centre in London. He made his stage debut in a West End production of An Inspector Calls under the direction of Stephen Daldry. He then spent a season with the Royal Shakespeare Company, performing in productions of Richard III, Romeo and Juliet and Julius Caesar. He returned to the stage to appear in Joe Penhall's Love and Understanding at London's Bush Theatre. He later reprised that role at the Long Wharf Theatre in Connecticut. He starred as 'Vision' in the Disney+ series "WandaVision", which earned him a Primetime Emmy® Award nomination. Previously, he starred as 'Vision' in the films Captain America: Civil War, The Avengers: Age of Ultron and Avengers: Infinity War. In 2020 he was seen in the Emmy® Nominated film Uncle Frank for writer/director Alan Ball, released by Miramax/Amazon Studios. He was nominated for a British Independent Film Award and a London Film Critics' Circle Award for IFC's Gangster No. 1, directed by Paul McGuigan. He went on to star in Brian Helgeland's film A Knight's Tale opposite Heath Ledger. Other credits include the Academy Award winning film A Beautiful Mind; Fox's Master & Commander: The Far Side of the World for director Peter Weir, for which he was nominated for a BAFTA for Best Supporting Actor and won an Evening Standard Award for Best British Actor, the London Film Critics' Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor and Elle Style Award for Best Actor. Other credits include the Academy Award nominated film Margin Call. Paul Bettany was most recently seen in the BBC/Amazon Studios series "A Very British Scandal" starring opposite Claire Foy. Upcoming, he will be seen in the Miramax dramedy Harvest Moon, from a script he co-wrote and co-produced with Dana Brown. He made his directorial debut with the film Shelter starring Jennifer Connelly and Anthony Mackie.

Jeremy Pope

(Jean-Michel Basquiat) made history by earning two Tony Award® nominations in the same season: Best Lead Actor in a Play for his Broadway debut in Tarrell Alvin McCraney's Choir Boy, and Best Supporting Actor in a Musical for his Broadway musical debut as Eddie Kendricks in Ain't Too Proud. His role in Choir Boy also earned him a Theatre World Award for Outstanding Broadway Debut, along with an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination and a Drama League Award nomination. Pope starred in Netflix's "Hollywood", a performance that earned him an Emmy® Award nomination for Best Actor in a Limited Series and an African American Film Critics Association Breakout Performer Award and he can be seen in the final season of the Emmy nominated television series, "Pose." Jeremy recently wrapped filming the lead role in A24's The Inspection and released his single "Uptown Apartment" featuring Earth, Wind, & Fire's Verdine White.

Krysta Rodriguez

(Maya) currently stars as Cinderella in Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Tony Award-winning Broadway musical Into the Woods. She most recently starred in Netflix's limited series "Halston" from Emmy-Award winning creator Ryan Murphy, starring as the iconic entertainer Liza Minnelli. Her Broadway credits include Spring Awakening (OBC and Deaf West revival company), First Date, The Addams Family, In the Heights, A Chorus Line (revival) and Good Vibrations. Rodriguez played Megara in the world premiere of Disney's Hercules (Public Works) and received an Outer Critics Circle honor for her performance in Theresa Rebeck's Seared (MCC Theater). Other memorable turns include West Side Story (Anita; Kennedy Center), A Chorus Line (Diana; Hollywood Bowl) and What We're Up Against (Off-Broadway). On television, Rodriguez is best known for her roles in "Smash," "Daybreak," and "Trial & Error" and recurring on "Quantico," "Younger," "Chasing Life," "The Mysteries of Laura," "Married" and "Gossip Girl."

Erik Jensen

(Bruno Bischofberger) is an actor, writer and director. TV credits include two seasons of ABC's "For Life" and over 100 other film/TV credits including NY Yankee Thurman Munson in "The Bronx is Burning." Theater: Disgraced (Lincoln Center), The Good Negro (Public Theater), Corpus Christi and Y2K (MTC), and Lester Bangs in How To Be A Rock Critic (CTG, Steppenwolf, The Public), which he co-wrote with his wife Jessica Blank. With Jessica, Erik also wrote The Exonerated, Aftermath (NYTW), The Line (The Public) and Coal Country (The Public, Cherry Lane/Audible). They have written TV for Fox, 20th TV, Gaumont, Levinson/Fontana, more; current TV projects in development with David Simon/Blown Deadline and Ed Burns. Their first feature, Almost Home, was released by Vertical Entertainment. They are developing How To Be A Rock Critic for feature film and have documentary features in development on legendary rock engineer Eddie Kramer (Meteor17) and on the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster (prod. Audrey Rosenberg/EP Steve Earle).

Anthony McCarten

(Playwright) is a New Zealand-born playwright, novelist, journalist, television writer and filmmaker. He is best known for writing the biopics The Theory of Everything (2014), Darkest Hour (2017), Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) and The Two Popes (2019). A double BAFTA-winning screenwriter, he has been nominated four times for Academy Awards, among them nominations for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Theory of Everything and The Two Popes. He is the author of ten previous plays and writer of the 'book' for the upcoming Neil Diamond Broadway musical, A Beautiful Noise (2022). The Collaboration, about Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat, is the second installment of his The Worship Trilogy, the other two parts being The Two Popes and Wednesday at Warren's, Friday at Bill's, about the friendship of Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. As a sequence, they separately explore our worship of religion, art and money. His upcoming film as writer and producer, I Wanna Dance With Somebody, is to open worldwide this Christmas from Sony Pictures, and is about the life and music of Whitney Houston. He lives in London.

Kwame Kwei-Armah OBE

(Director) is Artistic Director of the Young Vic theatre. He was Artistic Director of Baltimore Center Stage (2011-18) and Artistic Director of the Festival of Black Arts and Culture, Senegal (2010), where he wrote and directed the opening ceremony at Senghor stadium. His work as a director includes: Twelfth Night, Tree, Changing Destiny and The Collaboration (Young Vic); Jazz, Marley, Amadeus, Dance of the Holy Ghosts, The Mountaintop, An Enemy of the People, The Whipping Man and Things of Dry Hours (Baltimore Center Stage); Comedy of Errors, Much Ado About Nothing, Detroit '67 (Public Theater, New York); The Liquid Plain (Signature Theatre, New York and Oregon Shakespeare Festival); Porgy and Bess (Baltimore Symphony Orchestra) and the Olivier Nominated One Night in Miami for Best New Play 2016 (Donmar Warehouse). As a playwright, Kwame was the first African Caribbean to have a play produced in London's West End (Elmina's Kitchen). His triptych of plays was produced at The National Theatre, where he later created the online resource The Black Play Archive. Further credits include Tree (Manchester International Festival, Young Vic), One Love (Birmingham Repertory Theatre), Beneatha's Place (Baltimore Center Stage), Let There Be Love and Seize the Day (Tricycle Theatre). Kwame was Chancellor of the University of the Arts, London (2010-2015), is Patron of Ballet Black, The Black Cultural Archives, Chair of Warwick Arts Centre Advisory Board and a Trustee of the Tate. Kwame was awarded an OBE for Services to Drama in 2011, and in 2020 was listed as one of 100 Great Black Britons.


For over fifty years, the Young Vic has produced new plays, classics, musicals, book adaptations, short films, digital projects, and game-changing theatre. We foster emerging talent and collaborate with some of the world's finest directors, performers and creatives; creating award-winning productions, which engage with the world we live in.

Eleanor Lloyd Productions

Eleanor is the President of the Society of London Theatre (SOLT) and produces Agatha Christie's Witness for the Prosecution at London's County Hall (Olivier nomination). Recent productions include: A Christmas Carol; Constellations (Olivier Awards); Emilia (Olivier Awards); Nell Gwynn (Olivier Award); 1984 (including Broadway); My Night with Reg (Olivier nomination); and Handbagged (Olivier nomination).


Bob Benton's Anthology Theatre has been investing and producing since 2010. Executive Producer Lil Lambley joined in 2020 to expand the business to a full scale production house and general manager. Having produced and managed eight major productions in 2022, The Collaboration is Anthology's first Broadway production.


Stanley has won a Peabody Award and multiple Emmy and Sundance Awards. He produces film and TV through Dakota Group Ltd. Credits include Hairspray; Basquiat: The Radiant Child; Paper Dolls; LennoNYC; Berlin; Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict; Biggie: I Got a Story to Tell; The Andy Warhol Diaries (Netflix); and The Collaboration (Young Vic).

DENIS O'SULLIVAN's films as a producer and executive have grossed over $3.6 billion, been nominated for 29 Oscars (winning 14), 17 Golden Globes (winning 5), and 29 BAFTA Awards (winning 10). Credits include Bohemian Rhapsody, The Young Victoria, and the upcoming I Wanna Dance with Somebody.

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