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Robbins, Maxwell, Lenox, Washington, Preston and Martindale Read WEEKEND for NYTW

New York Theatre Workshop announces that Tim Robbins, Jan Maxwell, Kerry Washington, Carrie Preston, Adriane Lenox, and Margo Martindale will lead the cast in a reading of Gore Vidal's WEEKEND on Monday, November 3rd, at 7PM. The reading is free to the public.

New York Theatre Workshop (NYTW) Artistic Director James C. Nicola and Managing Director William Russo have announced that the cast for Gore Vidal’s Weekend, the final event in the 2008 Pre-Election Series, will include Patch Darragh, Stephen James King, Adriane Lenox, Stuart Margolin, Margo Martindale, Jan Maxwell, Conan McCarty, Hubert Point-Du Jour, Michael Potts, Carrie Preston, Tim Robbins, Charles Turner, and Kerry Washington.  The reading of Weekend, which is directed by Leigh Silverman, takes place Monday, November 3, at 7pm at NYTW, 79 East 4 Street.  Tickets to this event are free.  MEMBERS AND DONORS TO NYTW MAY RESERVE TICKETS IN ADVANCE.  ADMISSION FOR GENERAL PUBLIC IS ON A FIRST COME FIRST SERVE BASIS ON THE NIGHT OF THE EVENT.

In Weekend it’s 1968 and the Republican Party is in a struggle for its conscience.  Four years earlier after an explosive rise by Barry Goldwater and the far right, Goldwater became the Republican nominee for President running against LynDon Johnson.  Crushingly defeated, the Republican Party was left in disarray.  Now the longstanding progressive core of the party is attempting to make a comeback.  Republican Senator Charles MacGruder is preparing to announce his candidacy for president and make a bold statement against the Vietnam War, when his son arrives for the weekend with shocking and potentially career-ending news.

Weekend premiered on Broadway in the spring of 1968, in the heat of the campaign during which it is set, and Vidal’s biting political humor is no less relevant today.  In a whirlwind of self-righteousness, bigotry, blackmail, and opportunism, conservative values are called into question—even into direct contradiction—as pollsters and loyalists try to contain the damage and protect their candidate from the swirling media circus.  As politicians question their consciences in the midst of scandal, we get a prescient snapshot of a critical moment in our nation’s political history.

Weekend is the final event of NYTW’s 2008 Pre-Election Series, a program of public readings and events timed to this year’s historic presidential election.  The series, which is free to the public, reflects on our country’s political history, and in so doing, shines a spotlight on the current and future political landscape.  At times unsettling, even subversive, each event will contribute to the public discourse and spark challenging conversations as we approach this momentous election.  From the 19th century, to the furor of the 1960s, to the current administration, we find eerie echoes that remind us that our history is not far behind us.

New York Theatre Workshop, now celebrating its 26th season, is a leading voice in the world of Off-Broadway and within the theatre community in New York and around the world. NYTW has emerged as a premiere incubator of important new theatre, honoring its mission to explore perspectives on our collective history and respond to the events and institutions that shape our lives. In addition, NYTW is known for its innovative adaptations of classic repertory. Each season, from its home in New York's East Village neighborhood, NYTW presents three to five new productions, over 80 readings, and numerous workshop productions, for over 45,000 audience members. Over the past 26 years, NYTW has developed and produced over 100 new, fully staged works, including Jonathan Larson's Rent, Tony Kushner's Slavs! and Homebody/Kabul, Doug Wright's Quills, Claudia Shear's Blown Sideways Through Life and Dirty Blonde, Paul Rudnick's The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told and Valhalla, and Caryl Churchill's Mad Forest, Far Away, and A Number. The 2002 remounting of Martha Clarke's seminal work Vienna: Lusthaus and subsequent American tour was one of the longest-running productions in NYTW's history.  NYTW supports artists in all stages of their careers by maintaining a series of workshop programs including work-in-progress readings, summer residencies, and minority artist fellowships. In 1991, NYTW received an OBIE Award for Sustained Achievement and in 2000 was designated to be part of the Leading National Theatres Program by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

The reading of Weekend is free, open to the public, and will take place at New York Theatre Workshop (79 East 4th Street).  NYTW Repeat Defenders can reserve tickets in advance by e-mailing and NYTW Members can reserve tickets in advance by e-mailing  Tickets for the general public will be available at the NYTW Box Office on the day of the event starting at 6pm.

Photo of Tim Robbins by Pablo Pimienta

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