A Streetcar Named Desire Announces Casting & Starts Rehearsals

Roundabout Theatre Company (Todd Haimes, Artistic Director) is proud to present Natasha Richardson (Blanche Du Bois) & John C. Reilly (Stanley Kowalski) in a new Broadway production of Tennessee Williams' classic drama A Streetcar Named Desire, with Amy Ryan (Stella Kowalski) & Chris Bauer (Mitch), directed by Edward Hall at Studio 54 (254 West 54th Street). A Streetcar Named Desire will begin previews on Saturday, March 26th, 2005 and open officially on Tuesday, April 26th, 2005. This is a limited engagement through July 3rd, 2005.

The cast also includes Wanda L. Houston (Negro Woman), Kristine Nielsen (Eunice Hubbell), Scott Sowers (Steve Hubbell), Will Toale (Young Collector) and Teresa Yenque (Mexican Woman).

The design team for A Streetcar Named Desire includes Robert Brill (sets), William Ivey Long (costumes), Donald Holder (lights) and John Gromada (original music and sound).

Set against the steamy backdrop of New Orleans' gritty French Quarter, A Streetcar Named Desire is the dramatic story of Blanche Du Bois, a faded Southern belle driven to madness by her animalistic brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski.

Natasha Richardson returns to the Roundabout Theatre Company having received a 1993 Tony® nomination for Best Actress in a Play for her performance as "Anna Christopherson" in the Tony® Award-winning Anna Christie and a 1998 Tony® for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance as "Sally Bowles" in the Tony®-winning revival of Cabaret.

John C. Reilly returns to Broadway after receiving a 2000 Tony® nomination for Best Featured Actor in a Play for his performance in True West. He alternated performing the roles of "Lee" and "Austin" with Philip Seymour Hoffman. In 2002, John received a Golden Globe and Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the movie Chicago.

Amy Ryan returns to the Roundabout Theatre Company having received a 2000 Tony® nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her performance in Uncle Vanya. She also appeared at the Roundabout in Broadway productions of The Women and Three Sisters.

Roundabout Theatre Company has a long association with Tennessee Williams, having staged most recently The Night of the Iguana (1995-1996), Summer and Smoke (1995-1996 and 1975-1976) and The Glass Menagerie (1994-1995).

The Broadway premiere of A Streetcar Named Desire was at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre on December 3, 1947. The cast included Marlon Brando as "Stanley Kowalski" and Jessica Tandy as "Blanche Du Bois" (1948 Tony Award, Best Actress). This Roundabout Theatre Company production will be the fifth Broadway revival of A Streetcar Named Desire. The most recent revival opened on April 12, 1992 starring Alec Baldwin as "Stanley Kowalski" and Jessica Lange as "Blanche Du Bois". A Streetcar Named Desire won the 1948 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

Biographies:

Tennessee Williams (Playwright). Thomas Lanier Williams was born on March 26, 1911 in Columbus, Mississippi. He was the second child of Cornelius Coffin and Edwina Dakin Williams, who also had a daughter older then Tennessee and a son younger than him. The family lived for a few years in Clarksdale, Mississippi, and moved to St. Louis in 1918. Tennessee first started writing at 16, when he won third prize for his essay "Can a Good Wife Be a Good Sport?" In 1929 he entered the University of Missouri. University life was not for Tennessee, and in 1931 he began to work for a St. Louis shoe company. He also took work as a waiter, elevator operator, and theatre usher to support himself. All this time he continued to write. In 1937 Tennesse's first play, Cairo, Shanghai, Bombay was produced in Memphis, Tennessee. The production was a great experience for him, and led him to have two of his plays, Candles to the Sun and The Fugitive Kind, produced by Mummers of St. Louis in 1937. Williams enrolled briefly in Washington University, and finally entered the University of Iowa graduating in 1938. It was there that he earned his college nickname, Tennessee. Williams got his first taste of fame when he won The Group Theatre prize fir American Blues, and received a Rockefeller grant in 1939. Near the end of World War II, what many consider to be his finest play, The Glass Menagerie, ran successfully in Chicago and moved to Broadway a year later. At age 34, Williams won the Drama Critics' Circle award for best play of the year. Over the next eight years Williams wrote four more plays for Broadway. His reputation was even more firmly planted when he won the Pulitzer Prize for A Streetcar Named Desire in 1948. For the next thirty years Williams divided his time between New Orleans and New York, while many of his plays were made into films. He earned a second Pulitzer in 1955 for his play Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Williams died on February 24, 1983 at the Hotel Elysee in New York City. He will always be remembered as a man who helped the South find its voice.

Edward Hall (Director). Theatre includes: A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum (National Theatre), Calico (Duke of York's), Edmond (National Theatre), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Comedy Theatre, Watermill Theatre, UK Tour - TMA Award for Best Touring Production), The Hinge of the World (Guildford), Macbeth (Albery Theatre), Rose Rage adapted with Roger Warren from Henry VI parts I, II and III (Haymarket Theatre, Watermill Theatre, UK/International Tour and Chicago Shakespeare Theatre - Olivier Award Nomination for Best Director and TMA Award for Best Touring Production), The Constant Wife (Apollo), Putting It Together (Chichester), Julius Caesar (RSC), Tantalus (Denver Centre and UK Tour), Henry V (RSC - The South Bank Show Award for Theatre for "The Histories"), Twelfth Night (Watermill - Winner of the TMA/Barclays Theatre Best Director Award), Sacred Heart (Royal Court Theatre Upstairs), Celaine (Hampstead Theatre), The Two Gentleman of Verona (RSC), The Comedy of Errors and Henry V (Watermill, Pleasance Theatre London, RSC, The Other Place, Stratford and International Tour), That Good Night (Yvonne Arnaud Tour), Othello (Watermill and the Tokyo Globe), Richard III (Tokyo Globe), Cain (Minerva Studio, Chichester), Bare Knuckle Selling (Edinburgh Festival). His production of A Midsummer Night's Dream which played in London at the Comedy Theatre in 2003, went on to play at the Brooklyn Academy Of Music in New York in early 2004, where both he and the production were nominated for Drama Desk Awards. His production of Rose Rage which he directed for the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre in 2003, transferred to the Duke's Theatre in New York in September 2004. It recently won four Jeff Awards including Best Play, Best Director and Best Ensemble Cast. Television includes: "Safari Strife" (Cutting Edge, Channel 4) and "Richard III" (NHK in Japan). His radio productions include "Dear Exile", "Eveline", "Into Exile" (all for Radio 4).

Natasha Richardson (Blanche Du Bois) trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama. Natasha Richardson started her career at Leeds Playhouse. She has performed extensively on stage in roles including "Helena" in A Midsummer's Night's Dream, and "Ophelia" in Hamlet at the Young Vic. In 1986, she was voted the London Drama Critics' Most Promising Newcomer for her performance as "Nina" in The Seagull, with Vanessa Redgrave and Jonathan Pryce. In 1987, she played "Tracey Lord" in Richard Eyre's musical High Society. Playing the title role of Anna Christie she was voted London Drama Critics Poll Best Actress in 1992 at the Young Vic; then in 1993 on Broadway at the Roundabout, where she was nominated for a Tony and a Drama Desk for Best Actress in a Play, and won a Theatre World Award for Outstanding Debut and the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Debut of an Actress. For her performance as Sally Bowles in Sam Mendes' and Rob Marshall's production of Cabaret, she won the 1998 Tony, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League and Drama Desk Awards for Best Actress in a Musical. Then played "Anna" on Broadway in Patrick Marber's Tony nominated play Closer in 1999 and most recently played "Ellida" in Trevor Nunn's production of 'Lady from the Sea' at The Almeida 2003. Some of her television credits include Ibsen's Ghosts for the BBC, also starring Judi Dench, Michael Gambon and Kenneth Branagh; the HBO miniseries, Hostages with Colin Firth; the BBC film Suddenly Last Summer, based on the play by Tennessee Williams directed by Richard Eyre co-starrring Maggie Smith. In 1993, she was Cable Ace Award Nominated for her portrayal of "Zelda Fitzgerald" in the TNT movie Zelda directed by Pat O'Connor and co-starring Timothy Hutton. In 2001, she starred as "Ruth Gruber" in the CBS mini-series "Haven" based on Ms Gruber's book. In 1987, she made her feature film debut in the role of "Mary Shelley" in Ken Russell's Gothic. Her performance caught the attention of director Paul Schrader who cast her in her highly acclaimed title role in Patty Hearst. Since then, Ms. Richardson has achieved notable success in such films as Pat O'Connor's A Month In The Country, and Roland Joffe's Fat Man And Little Boy. She then went on to win The London Evening Standard Award for Best Actress of 1990 for her performance in Volker Schlondorf's The Handmaid's Tale and Paul Schrader's The Comfort Of Strangers. In 1994, she received the Best Actress Award at the Karlovy Vary Festival for her lead role in Widow's Peak, co-starring Mia Farrow and Joan Plowright. She co-starred with Jodie Foster and Liam Neeson in Nell, in 1995. And then in 1998 starred in Disney's The Parent Trap opposite Dennis Quaid. Her recent films include Blowdry in 2001, and Ethan Hawke's Chelsea Walls in 2002, Wakin' up in Reno with Billy Bob Thornton in 2002,and Maid in Manhattan in 2003. She just completed Asylum based on the Patrick McGrath novel, directed by David Mackenzie to be released in 2004. Natasha has worked for numerous AIDS organizations in the UK and US including Aids Crisis Trust, National Aids Trust, Mothers' Voices, and Gods Love We Deliver. She has spearheaded and organized many campaigns and fund raisers for "The American Foundation For Aids Research", most notably "Unforgettable: Fashion of the Oscars", the auction of Oscar dresses which raised over 1.5 million dollars. In 2000, she was honored with AmFar's prestigious Award of Courage for her work in the fight against AIDS.

John C. Reilly (Stanley Kowalski) received Oscar ™ and Golden Globe nominations for Best Supporting Actor for his standout performance as Amos Hart in the Academy Award®-winning film, Chicago. Additionally, he was named Best Supporting Actor by the Las Vegas Film Critics, and nominated by the Chicago Film Critics in the same category. The same year, Reilly starred in two other Academy Award®-nominated films, Martin Scorcese's Gangs of New York, and Stephen Daldry's The Hours, making it the first time that a single actor had been part of three of the five films in this prestigious category. Reilly was recently seen in the Warner Independent film Criminal, about a contemporary caper and a scheming con-man who becomes a mentor to a young hustler. The film also starred Diego Luna and Maggie Gyllenhaal and was directed by Gregory Jacobs. He will be re-teaming with Martin Scorcese and Leonardo DiCaprio in the highly anticipated The Aviator, in which he portrays Noah Dietrich, the eccentric industrialist Howard Hughes' business partner. The film was released by Miramax in December and stars an outstanding ensemble including Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin and Kate Beckinsale. He will also be seen opposite Jennifer Connelly in the Disney thriller Dark Water. In 2002, Reilly was seen starring opposite Jennifer Aniston as her husband in The Good Girl, a role which garnered him an IFP Spirit Award nomination. Reilly's other film credits include the critically acclaimed ensemble satire The Anniversary Party, co-directed by Alan Cumming and Jennifer Jason Leigh, Wolfgang Peterson's The Perfect Storm, and Paul Thomas Anderson's Magnolia. Prior to that, he co-starred in For Love of the Game, with Kevin Costner, Never Been Kissed, with Drew Barrymore and was also featured in the Terrence Malick's Academy Award®-nominated The Thin Red Line. He charmed audiences in Anderson's Oscar ™ nominated Boogie Nights, playing porn star Reed Rothchild, having previously worked with Anderson on his acclaimed debut Hard Eight, starring opposite Gwyneth Paltrow. Among Reilly's other feature credits are Georgia, What's Eating Gilbert Grape? Dolores Claiborne, The River Wild, We're No Angels, State of Grace, Hoffa and Casualties of War. Reilly returned to his theater roots in 2000 in Sam Shepard's Tony Award-nominated Broadway production True West, starring opposite Philip Seymour Hoffman in a tale of two brothers engaged in an intense psychological battle, garnering a Tony Award nomination for Best Performance by a Leading Actor. He also appeared on stage at the Huntington Theatre in Boston, starring in the title role in the musical, Marty. His other stage credits include starring with Gary Sinese in the Steppenwolf Theater Productions of The Grapes of Wrath and A Streetcar Named Desire, and producing and playing the title role in Ionesco's Exit the King, at the Actors Gang Theater in Los Angeles.

Chris Bauer (Mitch). A native of Los Angeles, Chris Bauer honed his skills on stage in Chicago performing with such noted ensembles as the Steppenwolf Theatre Company, as well as the famed Goodman Theater there. From there Bauer studied at the Yale School of Drama and then moved to New York, where he became a member of the Atlantic Theatre Company which was founded by David Mamet. After a while he returned to Chicago's stage community where he gained notice for his performance in Steppenwolf's production of the disturbing Clockwork Orange which Bauer credits as a watershed moment in his career. He has more recently appeared in the Atlantic's productions off Mojo, Hothouse And The Night Heron. Bauer's first feature film role in Snow White was opposite Sigourney Weaver. His other film credits include Face Off, Devil's Advocate, Flawless, 8 MM and Animal Factory (directed by Steve Buscemi). Bauer also recently appeared in HBO's acclaimed "61" which addresses NY Yankee Roger Maris' tortured 1961 assault on Babe Ruth's single season home run record. He has recently completed filming a leading role in Mary Harron's film Ballad Of Bettie Page and Showtime's controversial Sins Of Our Fathers. In addition to his long running role on John Wells NY based drama "Third Watch", Chris can also currently be seen on Johnny Zero as well as ESPN's new series "Tilt". Last year he starred in the second season of HBO's "The Wire".

Amy Ryan (Stella Kowalski). Amy's upcoming films include: Capote, Untitled Albert Brooks, A War of the Worlds, and released this spring, Lodge Kerrigan's Keane. Broadway: The Women, Uncle Vanya (Tony Nomination. Best Featured Actress), Three Sisters, The Sisters Rosensweig. London: Neil LaBute's The Distance From Here. Off Broadway: Playwright's Horizons' upcoming On The Mountain (Jo Bonney directing), Beth Henley's Crimes of the Heart (Directed by Garry Hynes), Edward Bond's Saved, Douglas Carter Beane's As Bees in Honey Drown, Hysterical Blindness, Marking, A Shayna Maidel, The Rimers of Eldritch, Peter Hedges' Imagining Brad, The Heidi Chronicles (National Tour, Kennedy Center), Biloxi Blues (National Tour), Arthur Miller's The Ride Down Mount Morgan (Williamstown Theatre Festival). Television: David Simon's "The Wire" (HBO) and Sidney Lumet's "100 Centre Street".

WANDA L. HOUSTON (Negro Woman). Streetcar marks Wanda's Broadway debut. Off-Broadway: Power Woman/Earth Mother in Menopause the Musical, A Good Swift Kick. Regional: Dolly Levi, Hello Dolly!, Jewel, Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Michael Jackson/Larry Hart production of Sisterella (nominated Best Supporting Actress, NAACP Award) My name is Alice, (Robbie Award) Nettie, Carousel Performances with Grammy nominated Broadway Inspirational Voices sharing stages with Stephanie Mills, Oletta Adams, Patti LaBelle, Liza Minelli and in Sinatra: His Life, His Way at Radio City. Wanda has performed with Sam Harris at Carnegie Hall, at the 67th Academy Awards with Debbie Allen and at Madison Square Garden with Barbra Streisand. Recordings: RCA release of "Infinite Joy: The Music of William Finn". Films: The Path and Romance & Cigarettes (dir. John Turturro).

Kristine Nielsen (Eunice Hubbell). Broadway: The Greenbird, Jackie: An American Life, The Iceman Cometh. Off-Broadway: Pericles (Theare for New Audiences), Ominium Gatherum (Variety Arts), The Underpants (CSC), The Wonder of the World (MTC) Betty's Summer Vacation (Obie Award; Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Nomination) Machinal (NYSF/The Public), Dog Opera (Obie Award). Regional: Williamstown Theatre Festival (six seasons), The Guthrie (three seasons), Actors Theatre of Louisville,Long Wharf, Yale Rep, Old Globe, La Jolla Playhouse, Baltimore Center Stage, The Alliance, Hartford Stage, Cleveland Play House, City Theatre (Pittsburgh), Royal Alex (Toronto), Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Film: Small Time Crooks, Advice to Caterpillar. TV: "Law& Order," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," "Third Watch."

Scott Sowers (Steve Hubbell). Theatre: Gint (Ibsen Festival), Bus Stop (Circle in the Square), A Few Good Men (National Tour, LA Dramalogue Award), Heathen Valley, F.M., Edward Albee's Fragments, Three Poets (all at Signature Theatre), Can-Can (Ensemble Studio Theatre). Film: Erin Brockovich, Season For Miracles, Magnolia, Blue Streak, Cradle Will Rock, Dangle in the Park, Boogie Boy and more. Television: "Law & Order", "Hopewell", "Cracker", "Swift Justice" and more.

Will Toale (Young Collector). Film: Tempting Adams, Uptown Girls, Balls, Chop Suey. "Cosmo Girl Awards", "Lloyd Klein" show, "Nautica" show. Trained at the William Esper Studio, Michael Howard Studio and with Susan Grace Cohen. B.A., Florida State University.

Teresa Yenque (Mexican Woman). Theatre: Blood Wedding, The House of Bernarda Alba, La Malasangre, Antigona Perez, Parece Blanca (Spanish Repertory Co.), Four Views with a Room (Lincoln Center), The Girl Who Said Yes to…., Walking on Sticks, A Piece Replaced and more. Film: Blue Diner, Ash Wednesday, Abuela's Revolt (NYU/NY Mag. Acting Award), A Further Gesture, The Juror, Extreme Measures. Television: "Ed", "Law & Order", "Unsolved Mysteries", "One Life to Live".

Ticket & Performance Information:

Beginning Sunday, February 6th, 2005 tickets will be available by calling Roundabout Ticket Services at (212) 719-1300 or online at www.roundabouttheatre.org. Beginning Monday, March 7th, tickets will be available at the box office at Studio 54 (254 West 54th St.). Tickets will also be available from February 6th - March 7th at the American Airlines box office (227 West 42nd St.). A Streetcar Named Desire will play Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 7:30PM with Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2:00PM. Ticket prices range from $36.25 to $91.25. Please note the following Early-to-Bed Series: Evening performances will begin at 7:00 PM from Tuesday, May 31st - Friday, June 10th.

Roundabout Theatre Company is one of the country's leading not-for-profit theatres. The company contributes invaluably to New York's cultural life by staging the highest quality revivals of classic plays and musicals as well as new plays by established writers. Roundabout consistently partners great artists with great works to bring a fresh and exciting interpretation that makes each production relevant and important to today's audiences.

The 2004-05 season marks an extraordinary time in Roundabout's history. The theatre has finally secured three permanent theatres each of which is designed specifically to enhance the needs of the Roundabout's mission. The off Broadway home, the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre's Laura Pels Theatre with its simple sophisticated design is perfectly suited to showcasing new plays while the grandeur of its Broadway home, American Airlines Theatre, sets the ideal stage for the classics. Roundabout's Studio 54 provides an exciting and intimate Broadway venue for its musical and special event productions. Together these three distinctive venues serve to enhance the work on each of its stages.

Roundabout Theatre Company productions are made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; New York State Council on the Arts; National Endowment for the Arts; and New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. American Airlines is the official airline of Roundabout Theatre Company. The Westin Hotel is the official hotel of the Roundabout Theatre Company.

www.roundabouttheatre.org