After she plays Seattle, Jane Alexander will bring a trimmed-down version of Eugene O'Neill's most daunting works, Mourning Becomes Electra, to Connecticut's Long Wharf Theatre in the fall of 2002. The production is directed by Gordon Edelstein, Long Wharf's new artistic director.
Mourning Becomes Electra is O'Neill's monumental take on Aeschylus' trilogy, The Oresteia. Set in the American south during the 19th century, the play is made up of three parts and a total of 13 acts. Rare stagings of the work have usually clocked in at five hours. But Edelstein has gotten the nod from the O'Neill estate to trim the text down to three hours, allotting roughly one hour to each play in the trilogy.
Alexander played the Electra character, called Lavinia by O'Neill, opposite Sada Thompson many years ago. At ACT and Long Wharf, she will be in the Clytemnestra mode, essaying the O'Neill role of Christine. Alexander has appeared on Broadway in The Great White Hope, 6 Rms Riv Vu, Find Your Way Home, First Monday in October, The Visit, The Sisters Rosensweig and Honour. She was nominated for a Tony Award for every one of these roles, winning for the first. For four years in the 1990's, she served as head of the National Endowment for the Arts.
The Long Wharf will also stage a new double-bill of Pultizer Prize winner Donald Margulies entitled Two Days. The evening will pair his July 7, 1994 with a world premiere one-act commissioned by the Long Wharf.