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McCarter Theatre Premieres PHAEDRA BACKWARDS, 10/18

McCarter Theatre will present the world premiere of Marina Carr's Phaedra Backwards, directed by Artistic Director Emily Mann, October 18 through November 6. This richly poetic and visually complex adaptation of the Phaedra myth is the product of a McCarter commission. Using a non-linear structure and a variety of non-dialogue techniques (both film and live action), Ms. Carr's Phaedra Backwards is brave in its experimentation with form. To learn more about this production, visit

According to McCarter Artistic Director and the director of the production, Emily Mann, "Marina Carr has written an aural and visual poem, telling an ancient story in modern terms - poetic, fractured, and deconstructed. As a director, I lie awake at night dreaming about this play and the visual world it evokes. I am thrilled by the immense power of the piece and excited to introduce our audiences to such innovative work."

The complete cast for Phaedra Backwards will feature Susan Blommaert, Christopher Coucill, Angel Desai, Sean Haberle, Stephanie Roth Haberle, Julienne Hanzelka Kim, Mariann Mayberry, Julio Monge, Randall Newsome, and Jake Silbermann. Members of the Young Ensemble are Alexandra Erickson, Noah Hinsdale, Elsa Rodriguez, and Hope Springer.

The design team includes Rachel Hauck (set design), Anita Yavich (costume design), Jeff Croiter (lighting design), Mark Bennett (original music and sound design), Peter Nigrini (projection design), and Peter Pucci (movement director). The production stage manager is Cheryl Mintz.
McCarter Theatre has been privileged to be the American artist home of Marina Carr, one of Ireland's premiere contemporary playwrights. Born in 1964, Marina was brought up in County Offaly and graduated from Dublin's University College in 1987. Plays for The Abbey Theatre, Dublin include: 16 Possible Glimpses, Marble, Ullaloo, The Mai, Portia Coughlan, By the Bog of Cats, Ariel, and Meat and Salt. Other plays include On Raftery's Hill (Druid/Royal Court), Low in the Dark (Project Arts Centre), Woman and Scarecrow (Royal Court), The Cordelia Dream (Royal Shakespeare Company), and The Giant Blue Hand (The Ark). Awards: The Macaulay Fellowship and the E.M. Forster Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She was the 1932 fellow at Princeton for 2008. She currently teaches playwriting at Trinity College where she is an honorary professor and lives in Kerry with her husband and four children.

Susan Blommaert (Nanny) has appeared on Broadway in Grease and off-Broadway at The Public Theater, Vineyard Theatre, Circle Rep, The Production Co., Actors Playhouse, and Ubu Rep. Her television credits include The Big C, Boardwalk Empire, The Good Wife, Flight of the Conchords, The Sopranos, Law & Order, The X-Files, and ER.

Christopher Coucill (Inventor) has appeared on Broadway in The Graduate, Annie Get Your Gun, and Kiss Me Kate, and off-Broadway in The Rothschilds, Portraits, Words Divine, and The Fantasticks, among others. He has worked at McCarter Theatre, Passage Theatre, Arena Stage, Dallas Theater Center, The Huntington, Hartford Stage, and the Boston Shakespeare Company, among many others. Chris lives in Princeton with his wife Liz Fillo.

Angel Desai (Pasiphae) was seen on Broadway in the revival of Company, directed by John Doyle. Off-Broadway: The Tempest, The Winter's Tale at Classic Stage Company; Manic Flight Reaction, The Bubbly Black Girl... at Playwrights Horizons. The Architecture of Loss at New York Theatre Works; The Antigone Project, Gum for the Women's Project; This End Up: A User's Manual for Lovers of Asians for Ma-Yi; Stop Kiss, and Henry VIII at The Public/NYSF. Her television credits include The Event, Washington Field, The Good Wife, Kings, The Eleventh Hour, Dollhouse, and has had roles on all three Law & Order.

Sean Haberle (Minos) appeared in the Ridge Theater's production of Persephone, which was presented as part of BAM's 2010 Next Wave Festival; Jane Eyre and Hedda Gabler at The Guthrie Theater; Macbeth at Baltimore Center Stage; As You Like It at Long Wharf; Therese Raquin at Classic Stage Company; and many more.

Stephanie Roth Haberle (Phaedra) was seen on Broadway in Artist Descending a Staircase (Drama Desk nomination), Les Liaisons Dangereuses with the Royal Shakespeare Company, Brighton Beach Memoirs/Broadway Bound. Off-Broadway in Orange, Hat and Grace at Soho Rep; An Oresteia at Classic Stage Company; Cymbeline for New York Shakespeare Festival; Two Gentlemen of Verona for Shakespeare's Globe-London and Victory Theatre; The Cherry Orchard at BAM, directed by Peter Brook; Uncommon Women and Others, Crumbs from the Table of Joy at Second Stage Company; and, A Body of Water at Circle Rep. TV and Film: Crimes & Misdemeanors, Deconstructing Harry, Melinda & Melinda, Hollywood Ending, Philadelphia, The Cradle Will Rock, Songcatcher, Joshua, Deception, Flannel Pajamas, Fred, Law & Order, Homicide, and NY Undercover.

Julienne Hanzelka Kim (Aricia) appeared on Broadway: Metamorphoses, Golden Child; Off-Broadway in Yellow Face at The Public Theater, The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow at Atlantic Theater, The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci at Second Stage, Blood Orange at Cherry Lane Theatre and the Blue Heron Arts Center, and The House of Bernarda Alba at National Asian American Theatre Company.

Mariann Mayberry (Ariadne) last appeared at McCarter in Mary Zimmerman's The Odyssey. Broadway: August: Osage County, Metamorphoses, One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest. Off-Broadway: Go Back to Where You Are at Playwrights Horizon; and The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci at Second Stage. TV: Mercy, Law & Order, The Pennsylvania Miner's Story, Dave Chappelle Show, and Delocated. Film: War of the Worlds, Handsome Harry, The Company, and Since You've Been Gone. Ms. Mayberry has been a Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble member since 1993 where she has appeared in over 25 productions including The Libertine, The Pain and the Itch, and Slavs.
Julio Monge (Minotaur) Broadway credit include Twelfth Night (Lincoln Center, directed by Nicholas Hytner, Jerome Robbins' Broadway, Man of La Mancha, Paul Simon's The Capeman, Fosse, and Chronicle of a Death Foretold, directed by Graciela Daniele. He has appeared in Anthony and Cleopatra, directed by and starring Vanessa Redgrave; Pericles at The Public Theater; Henry VIII, Much Ado About Nothing, and Hamlet for Shakespeare in the Park/Public Theater. International tours Aurélia's Oratorio, created and directed by Victoria Thierree Chaplin.

Randall Newsome (Theseus) was last seen at McCarter in The Birthday Party and on Broadway in Inherit the Wind and A Touch of the Poet. TV and film: I Love You Phillip Morris, Oliver Stone's W, Sangre de Mi Sangre (2007 Sundance Grand-Jury Prize Winner), Love Happens, Highlander II, Big Fat Liar, Benji: Off the Leash, Tremors, Boardwalk Empire, The Good Wife, Royal Pains, Person of Interest, Law & Order, Guiding Light, Ed.

Jake Silbermann (Hippolytus) is best known for playing the controversial role of Noah Mayer on TV's As the World Turns. His other television credits include Guiding Light, Gossip Girl, and ABC's upcoming Georgetown.

Tickets for Phaedra Backwards start as low as $20 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at 91 University Place, Princeton, NJ 08540.


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