Karen Allen & Reed Birney to Star in World Premiere Of Donald Margulies' LUNAR ECLIPSE at Shakespeare & Company

The play will be staged at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre from September 15 to October 22.

By: Sep. 15, 2023
Karen Allen & Reed Birney to Star in World Premiere Of Donald Margulies' LUNAR ECLIPSE at Shakespeare & Company
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Lunar Eclipse, a new work by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Donald Margulies (Dinner With Friends, Time Stands Still, Collected Stories) will make its World Premiere at Shakespeare & Company this fall, featuring Karen Allen (Animal House, Raiders of the Lost Ark) and Tony Award-winner Reed Birney (recent: The Menu, Succession) from September 15 through October 22.

On a summer night, in the middle of a field on an American farm, a long-married couple sits on folding chairs to observe the seven stages of a lunar eclipse. While watching the celestial phenomenon unfold, the two sip bourbon and reflect on land and legacy, on children and dogs, and the accelerating passage of time.

Generously sponsored by Deb and Bill Ryan, Lunar Eclipse will be staged indoors at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre on the Shakespeare & Company grounds. Tickets range from $22 for students to $62, and are available at shakespeare.org, or by calling the Box Office at (413) 637-3353. Preview shows on Friday, Sept. 15 and Saturday, Sept 16 are $10 less. Opening performance is Sunday, Sept. 17, at 2 p.m.

Cast & Crew Bios

Donald Margulies

(Playwright)

Donald Margulies has won a Lucille Lortel Award, two American Theatre Critics New Play Citations, two Los Angeles Drama Critics Awards, two OBIE Awards (for Sight Unseen and The Model Apartment), one Tony Award nomination (for Time Stands Still), one L.A. Ovation Award (for The Country House), two Dramatists' Guild Hull-Warriner Awards, five Drama Desk Award nominations, five Burns Mantle Best Play citations, two Pulitzer Prize nominations (for Sight Unseen and Collected Stories), and one Pulitzer Prize (for Dinner with Friends). His other plays include Brooklyn Boy, The Loman Family Picnic, What's Wrong with this Picture?, Found a Peanut, God of Vengeance, Coney Island Christmas, and Shipwrecked! An Entertainment - The Amazing Adventures of Louis De Rougemont (As Told by Himself). Margulies has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, and The New York Foundation for the Arts. He is an alumnus of New Dramatists and serves on the council of The Dramatists Guild of America. He teaches English and Theatre Studies at Yale University.

James Warwick

(Director)

James Warwick has been a resident U.S. actor and theater director since 2000. He trained at the Royal Central School in London and played many leading roles in London's West End before coming to the US to play Sir Robert Chiltern in An Ideal Husband on Broadway. He then played King Arthur in Camelot on national tour and starred in several TV series, shown here on BBC/PBS Masterpiece Theatre. Other TV credits include Dr. Who and a four-part series of The Bell by Iris Murdoch. He has directed productions in Los Angeles, St. Louis, New York, N.Y., and many regional theaters. In 2018, he directed Mothers and Sons by Terrence McNally for Shakespeare & Company, followed by The Children by Lucy Kirkwood, Ionesco's The Chairs and last season's A Walk in the Woods by Lee Blessing, which received the Top Production of the Year award from The Berkshire Eagle.

Karen Allen

(Em)

Karen Allen worked for the first time with Shakespeare & Company in 1988 when she played Rosalind in As You Like It and is delighted to be doing a play again in the Berkshires. Other theater performances include The Monday After the Miracle (Broadway), Extremities, The Miracle Worker, The Country Girl, Speaking in Tongues, The Glass Menagerie, Beautiful Bodies, Temporary Help, and most recently A Summer Day at the Cherry Lane in New York, N.Y. She has starred in more than 50 films including Animal House, The Wanderers, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Starman, Scrooged, The Glass Menagerie, White Irish Drinkers, Bad Hurt, Colewell, A Year By the Sea, and A Stage of Twilight. She has played in many television films and shows, and as a director in theater she directed productions of Moonchildren, The Batting Cage, Extremities, Ashville, Frankie & Johnny in the Clair de Lune, and Outside Mullingar. Karen directed her first short film "A Tree. A Rock. A Cloud" based on a Carson McCullers' short story several years ago and is planning to direct a feature film based on Joan Ackermann's play The Batting Cage in 2024.

Reed Birney

(George)

Reed Birney is a New York-based actor who made his film debut in 1980 in Arthur Penn and Steve Tesich's Four Friends. Recent films include Fran Kranz's Mass (Independent Spirit's Robert Altman Award, Gotham Award Nomination), The Menu, The Hunt, The 40 Year Old Version, and Bess Wohl's Baby Ruby. He will next appear in Part Two of Kevin Costner's epic four-part film, Horizon. On television, he has been seen in House of Cards, Lost Girls, The Handmaid's Tale, The Americans, Poker Face, Succession, High Maintenance, Titans, and The Blacklist. On stage, he last appeared with his son, Ephraim, at The Irish Rep in Joseph Dougherty's Chester Bailey, which they had previously performed at Barrington Stage in the summer of 2021. Other New York appearances include Robert Icke's production of Orwell's 1984; Casa Valentina (Tony Nomination, Drama Desk Award); Gemini; Picnic; Uncle Vanya (Drama Desk Nomination); Blasted (Drama Desk Nomination); Circle Mirror Transformation (OBIE, Drama Desk Awards). He is the winner of the 2006 OBIE for Sustained Excellence, the 2011 Drama Desk Award for Career Excellence, and the 2016 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play.

About Shakespeare & Company

Shakespeare & Company was founded in 1978 by Tina Packer. Located in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, the Company offers performance, education, and actor-training opportunities year-round, and attracts more than 40,000 patrons annually with a core of more than 150 artists.




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