Steven Skybell, Christine Pedi & More to Star in HEARTBREAK HOUSE at Gingold Theatrical Group

Heartbreak House will be presented at Symphony Space’s Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theatre on Monday May 20, 2024.

By: Apr. 23, 2024
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Steven Skybell, Christine Pedi & More to Star in HEARTBREAK HOUSE at Gingold Theatrical Group Gingold Theatrical Group will continue the 19th season of Project Shaw with Heartbreak House by George Bernard Shaw. Inspired by the works of George Bernard Shaw, Project Shaw is a special series of Script-In-Hand performances that aim to provoke peaceful discussion and activism. Each performance is followed by a lively post-show discussion with the cast and director. Directed by Stephen Brown-Fried, Heartbreak House will be presented at Symphony Space’s Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theatre on Monday May 20, 2024, at 7PM. 

The cast of Shaw’s Heartbreak House will feature Robert Cuccioli (A Touch of the Poet), Carman Lacivita (To My Girls),Teresa Avia Lim (The Knight of the Burning Pestle), Patrice Johnson-Chevannes (Endgame), Dakin Matthews (Camelot),Mark Nelsen (The Orchard), Christine Pedi (SiriusXM’s “On Broadway”), Laila Robins (“The Crowded Room”), Steven Skybell (Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club) and Nick Wyman (Network).

 Heartbreak House, one of Bernard Shaw’s most admired curious comedies, is packed full of extraordinary characters and plot twists. This rarely produced and provocative piece is set just before WWI. The action of the play takes place in the Shotover home, built like a ship on top of a hill in the English countryside. This unusual conflagration of guests, both expected and unexpected, bounce off of each other during a highly charged weekend in the country. Over the course of the play, everyone learns to face the future, however tumultuous it may be.

According to GTG Artistic Director David Staller, “While George Bernard Shaw was still reinventing the art of arts criticism, he was actively encouraging the playwrights of the day to write amusingly activist plays that reflected the voice and tone of their contemporary moment. He longed for someone to become the British Ibsen or Chekhov. With no takers, he finally decided to do it himself. With his Heartbreak House from 1920, he borrowed so liberally from Chekhov that he subtitled it ‘A Fantasia in the Russian Manner on English Themes.’ This always surprising and sparkling comedy of manners has never seemed timelier.”

Stephen Brown-Fried's directing credits include the Obie Award-winning Awake and Sing! (NAATCO/The Public Theater) as well as NAATCO's Drama Desk-nominated six-hour compilation of Shakespeare's Henry VI plays, along with numerous productions at theatres including Shakespeare Theatre of NJ, Northern Stage, Trinity Shakespeare, Milwaukee Shakespeare, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Working Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, and Sundance Theatre Lab. He has served as a guest director at Juilliard, NYU/Tisch Graduate Acting, Southern Methodist University, Virginia Commonwealth University, University of Miami, The Atlantic School, North Carolina School of the Arts, and The Yale School of Drama. From 2016-2020, he served as the Associate Director of Gingold Theatrical Group where he created and ran the Speakers' Corner writers’ group. From 2014 through 2015 he served as the Artistic Associate and Casting Director at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and from 2005 to 2008 as the Resident Assistant Director at Washington, DC's Shakespeare Theatre Company. Currently, he serves as the Vice Dean of Curriculum and Learning for the New School's College of Performing Arts, which includes Mannes School of Music, the School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, and The School of Drama. Before this, he served as Associate Dean of the School of Drama, and Co-Chair of Directing at The New School. He is on the faculty of the Metropolitan Opera's Lindemann Young Artist Development Program and has served as a Lecturer in Directing at The Yale School of Drama.  He is the recipient of the Drama League Director's Fellowship as well as the Jacob Javitz Fellowship and has trained at the Center for Theatre Studies in Gardzienice, Poland, and with the Double Edge Theatre troupe. He holds a B.A. in History and Drama from Stanford University and an M.F.A. in Directing from the Yale School of Drama.

 Additional readings for the 19th season of Project Shaw will include an adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s theoretical romantic short story about Shakespeare’s sonnets, The Portrait of Mr. W.H. on June 24 to help kick-off NYC Pride week. All Project Shaw readings will be presented in a concert-reading format at the Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theater at Symphony Space. Tickets are $40 and will be available for purchase by calling 212-864-5400 or visiting www.symphonyspace.orgLeonard Nimoy Thalia Theatre is an accessible space. Infra-red hearing devices will also be available. 

Now celebrating its 19th year, Gingold Theatrical Group's Project Shaw made history in December 2009 as the first company ever to present performances of every one of Shaw's 65 plays, including full-length works, one-acts and sketches. Project Shaw also presents plays by writers who share Shaw’s activist socio-political views and embrace human rights and free speech, including Anton Chekhov, Henrik Ibsen, Elizabeth Robins, Rachel Crothers, Arthur Wing Pinero, Oscar Wilde, James Matthew Barrie, and Harley Granville-Barker. GTG’s other programs include its new play development and educational programs. For those interested in lively off-site discourses, each Project Shaw event is followed by a talk-back with cast members. This script-in-hand series is also a direct link to Gingold’s SPEAKERS’ CORNER New Play Development Program, dedicated to creating new plays inspired by these classic works of theatrical activism.

GTG’s recent highly acclaimed Off-Broadway engagement of Shaw’s Arms and the Man will be streamed online later this year.

 For more information about Project Shaw and all the programs at Gingold Theatrical Group, call 212-355-7823,, or visit


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