Kelley Curran, Ben Horner, Elizabeth Stahlmann & More to Star in THE MISANTHROPE Reading at The Acting Company

The reading will take place on Monday, February 6 at 7:00 PM.

By: Jan. 24, 2023
Kelley Curran, Ben Horner, Elizabeth Stahlmann & More to Star in THE MISANTHROPE Reading at The Acting Company

The Acting Company has announced the cast for their reading of The Misanthrope. Molière's classic play is translated by Neil Bartlett (The West End's Orlando, The BBC's Make Death Love Me; Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra Reimagined, A Vision of Love Revealed in Sleep) and directed by The Acting Company's Producing Director Devin Brain. The Misanthrope is produced as part of The Acting Company's annual Louanna O. Carlin & John MacDonald Reading Series. The series will feature two reimagined classics and one new musical, curated by The Acting Company's new artistic department.

The cast for The Misanthrope features The Acting Company alumnae Kelley Curran (Broadway's Present Laughter, Off-Broadway's Dracula, Mother of the Maid, HBO Max's "The Gilded Age," NBC's "The Blacklist") as Celimene, and Elizabeth Stahlmann (Broadway's Slave Play, Showtime's "City on a Hill") as Arsinoe, with Rufus Collins (Broadway's The Royal Family, To Be Or Not To Be, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg; Off-Broadway's The Dead, 1904) as Oronte, Ben Horner (Broadway's Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Off-Broadway's After the Blast, NBC's "The Blacklist") as Philinte, Chukwudi Iwuji (Off-Broadway's Tamburlaine, The Royal Shakespeare Company's Henry VI, BBC's "The Split," HBO Max's "Peacemaker," Netflix's "Designated Survivor") as Alceste, and Nikki Massoud (Off-Broadway's Wish You Were Here, Othello, HBO's "Succession," Amazon's "Mozart in the Jungle") as Eliante.

Each season, The Acting Company hosts a series of staged readings. A mixture of new texts, classics of the canon, and forgotten favorites, these readings are a showcase of The Acting Company's alumni and a chance to explore other works by playwrights and directors featured in the company's National Tours. The Acting Company gratefully recognizes the generous supporters of The Louanna O. Carlin and John MacDonald Reading Series, including Richard J. Reilly, Jr. (Producer) and John and Jill Gilbert (Underwriter, Three Sisters (after Chekhov)).

Louanna O. Carlin & John MacDonald Reading Series Schedule

The Misanthrope

By Molière
Translated by Neil Bartlett
Directed by Producing Director Devin Brain

Monday, February 6 at 7:00 PM
Peter Jay Sharp Theater
416 West 42 Street, New York, NY, 10036

Bartlett's uproarious translation of Molière's comedy of manners transports the formal court of Louis XIV into a Hollywood film studio, while retaining the rhymed couplets and verse of classical French.

Billy Strayhorn: Something to Live For

Music and Lyrics by Billy Strayhorn
Book by Robert Zellers with Kent Gash
Directed by Artistic Director Kent Gash
Musical Direction by Matthew Whitaker

Monday, March 6 at 7:00 PM
Mainstage Theater
416 West 42 Street, New York, NY, 10036

This captivating story of openly gay jazz innovator Billy Strayhorn and his collaborations with Duke Ellington features his rousing hits, including "Take the 'A' Train" and "Lush Life," in charting Strayhorn's groundbreaking creativity, activism, and relationships.

Three Sisters (after Chekhov)

Written by Mustapha Matura
Directed by Seret Scott

Monday, May 22 at 7:00 PM
Peter Jay Sharp Theater
416 West 42 Street, New York, NY, 10036

In Colonial Trinidad 1941, three sisters endure a mundane but privileged life in the capital, Port of Spain. Adapted from one of Chekhov's greatest works, Mustapha Matura examines the question of cultural identity and the way people transform themselves - willingly or unconsciously - in order to survive.

Tickets are now available for the Louanna O. Carlin & John MacDonald Reading Series' New York performances. Tickets for each show may be purchased separately, or, for a limited time only, together at a special price. Seating is subject to availability. Visit or call 212-258-3111 to purchase tickets.


Rufus Collins

(Oronte). Broadway: The Royal Family, To Be or Not To Be, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg, An Ideal Husband, The Homecoming. For the Irish Repertory Theatre: Meet Me in St. Louis, The Dead 1904, The Quare Land, Aristocrats. Off-Broadway: Road to Damascus, The Seagull, Orson's Shadow, House and Garden. Regional highlights: Lifespan of a Fact (Hartford Theater Works), Sherlock's Last Case (Huntington), Venus in Fur (Goodman), Seminar (Philadelphia Theatre Co.) Michael Von Seibenburg Melts Through the Floorboards (Humana), The Old Masters (Long Wharf), The Autumn Garden and Dissonance (Williamstown), The Real Thing (Huntington), In This Corner (Old Globe), Dinner with Friends, Hedda Gabler, Indian Ink, The Ruling Class, Macbeth. Film: After the Wedding, The Geezer, Wanted, Joshua, Milia. Television: "The Black List," "The Deuce," "BlueBloods," "Madam Secretary," "Elementary," "Mysteries of Laura," "Forever," "Mozart in the Jungle," "Law & Order" (All versions). Rufus studied acting at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London.

Kelley Curran

(Celimene). Kelley Curran (TAC Alum - '07-'09) can be seen as Turner in Jullian Fellowes' "The Gilded Age" for HBO. She was most recently seen on the stage Off-Broadway opposite Glenn Close in Mother of the Maid at The Public Theater. Prior to that she was Clytemnestra in Ellen McLaughlin's world premiere of The Oresteia at The Shakespeare Theatre Company. Kelley has also appeared on Broadway in Present Laughter with Kevin Kline, and at The Signature Theatre, Classic Stage Company, Theatre For a New Audience, and LAByrinth Theatre Company, among others. She made her network television debut on NBC's "The Blacklist," and recently appeared on the CBS drama "God Friended Me." In 2019, she made her feature film debut in The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot. For her work, Kelley has won The Callaway Award, Emery Battis Award, NTC Emerging Professional Award, and in 2016 was nominated for a Drama League Award alongside Lupita Nyong'o, Michelle Williams, and Lin Manuel-Miranda. She has also been nominated for both a Princess Grace and Helen Hayes Award.

Ben Horner

(Philinte). Broadway credits include: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Saint Joan, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, Macbeth, War Horse. Other theatre includes: THUNDERBODIES! (Soho Rep), After The Blast (LCT3), F*cking A (Signature), An Octoroon (Soho Rep), The Gods Are Pounding My Head! AKA Lumberjack Messiahs (Ontological-Hysteric) among others. Film and TV includes: "New Amsterdam," "The Blacklist," "High Maintenance," "Mr. Robot," "Luke Cage," "Person of Interest," Blow Up My Life, and Deliver Us From Evil. Training: Yale. Other: Ben is also a founding member of the hit DnD show on Twitch, The Familiars.

Chukwadi Iwuji

(Alceste). Upcoming, Iwuji will make his debut in the Marvel universe in James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, the next installment in the blockbuster franchise. Additional television credits include James Gunn's spinoff series "Peacemaker" for HBO Max and DC, the BBC drama "The Split," Michael Morrissey's "The Girl Who Got Away," as well as the Emmy nominated Amazon limited series "The Underground Railroad" for director Barry Jenkins. Other television appearances include "When They See Us," "Designated Survivor," "Quantico," "The Blindspot," "Madam Secretary," and "Doctor Who." Iwuji's film credits include the Netflix feature Shine Your Eyes, the thriller Daniel Isn't Real, Netflix's Barry, Chad Stahelski's John Wick: Chapter 2, A Woman A Part, Now: In the Wings of a World Stage, the multi-award winning Exam, and Fall to Rise. Iwuji starred in Othello for The Public Theatre's Shakespeare in the Park as well as in Antony and Cleopatra, King Lear, and Hamlet. His performance in The Low Road, directed by Michael Greif, earned him an Obie Award, as well as 2018 Lucille Lortel and Drama League nominations. An Associate Artist of the prestigious Royal Shakespeare Company for his numerous Shakespearean performances, he has also received two Olivier awards for his titular role as Henry IV in the RSC's 2009 productions of parts I, II, and III. Other stage credits include the titular role in The Public Theatre's Hamlet directed by Patricia McGregor; Ivo van Hove's Obsession and Hedda Gabler, both for The National Theatre; The Public Theatre's productions of King Lear and Antony and Cleopatra; Theatre for a New Audience's Tamburlaine directed by Michael Boyd; and the Old Vic's Richard III directed by Sam Mendes. Iwuji is also a founding member of Chudor House Productions, his family's production and management company. He currently resides in New York.

Nikki Massoud

(Eliante). Nikki Massoud is an actor and writer based in NYC. She is an Iranian-American immigrant, raised in Montreal, Canada and Washington, DC. NY: Wish You Were Here (Playwrights Horizons), Othello (NYTW). REGIONAL: The Old Globe, Berkeley Rep, Huntington Theatre Company, South Coast Rep, Portland Center Stage. TV: "Succession" (HBO), "Love Life" (HBO Max), "Mozart in the Jungle" (Amazon), "Madam Secretary" (CBS). Nikki is a Launch Commission writer for Atlantic Theater and has narrated over 30 audiobooks, currently available on Audible. She is a graduate of the Brown University/Trinity Rep MFA Program, Georgetown University, and BADA (British-American Drama Academy.)

Elizabeth Stahlmann

(Arsinoe). Elizabeth has been lucky enough to tour nationally with The Acting Company for three seasons in Romeo and Juliet, A Comedy of Errors, and As You Like It. She has most recently led the ensemble of Tectonic Theater Project's world premiere of Here There Are Blueberries at La Jolla Playhouse, directed by Moisés Kauffman. Other theater credits include: Slave Play (Center Theater Group, understudy for Broadway), KrymovLab NYC, Grounded (Westport Country Playhouse, CT Critics Circle Award); The Alley Theatre; The Guthrie Theater. TV/film credits include: "City on a Hill," "The Equalizer," "Law & Order: SVU," The Snare (still in production). Graduate of University of MN/Guthrie Theater (BFA), Yale School of Drama (MFA).

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Kent Gash, Managing Director Erik Schroeder, and Producing Director Devin Brain, The Acting Company brings professional productions and education programs, in-school residencies, and teacher training workshops to thousands of audience members and students in underserved communities and schools each year. Founded by John Houseman and Margot Harley, the company seeks to develop emerging actors and build enthusiastic, knowledgeable audiences for the theater in towns across the United States. The Acting Company launched the careers of nearly 500 actors, including Kevin Kline, Patti LuPone, Mary Lou Rosato, Keith David, Rainn Wilson, Lorraine Toussaint, Frances Conroy, Harriet Harris, Lisa Banes, Jeffrey Wright, Hamish Linklater, Jesse L. Martin, Roslyn Ruff, Jimonn Cole, and Kelley Curran.

Over 5,000 students in New York City and across the country benefit from The Acting Company's in-school residencies and educator workshops every year. Annually, over 30,000 audience members see an Acting Company production across the country who otherwise lack access to professional classical theatre.

Among many accolades, The Acting Company received the 2003 Tony Award for Excellence in the Theater, and recently won the 2019 Audelco Award for Best Play for its production of Nambi E. Kelley's Native Son directed by Seret Scott.

Since 1972, The Acting Company has performed for over four million people in 48 States, 10 foreign countries, on and Off-Broadway, and at leading resident theaters including The Guthrie and The Kennedy Center. New works commissioned by the company include plays by William Finn, Marcus Gardley, Rebecca Gilman, John Guare, Beth Henley, Tony Kushner, Lynn Nottage, Meg Miroshnik, Ntozake Shange, Maria Irene Fornés, Spalding Gray, Marsha Norman, Charles Smith, Samm-Art Williams, and Wendy Wasserstein.

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