Alec Baldwin, Ellen Barkin, Anjelica Huston, Bette Midler and Chris O'Donnell will join the previously announced cast of Matthew Broderick, Kevin Kline, Angela Lansbury and Emma Thompson for Mike Nichols' starry two-night benefit, Short Talks on the Universe. Daniel Sullivan will direct the evening of world premiere short plays at Broadway's Eugene O'Neill Theatre, Nov. 17-18.
Jules Feiffer's new work, E-mail, has been added to the list of plays from marquee writers as Terrence McNally, Jon Robin Baitz, Nora Ephron, Steve Martin and Elaine May. Previously announced projects by Tony Kushner and George C. Wolfe will not be part of the presentation according to a production spokesperson.
Presented by Target and benefiting Friends In Deed (the organization Nichols chairs in support of those affected by life-threatening illness) and the not-for-profit Bay Street Theatre of Sag Harbor, NY, Short Talks on the Universe will be directed by Sullivan (Proof, Morning's at Seven). Set to star in the (10-minute) plays, so far, are Alec Baldwin, Ellen Barkin, Matthew Broderick, Anjelica Huston, Kevin Kline, Angela Lansbury, Bette Midler, Chris O'Donnell and Emma Thompson.
Among the plays are Show People by Baitz (Ten Unknowns) — in which a big-time theater producer meets with Satan after dessert at Sardi's; I Hate My Purse by Ephron (Imaginary Friends) — a monologue in which a woman explains her hatred for her purse; 3 AM by Martin (Picasso at the Lapin Agile) — about a couple who share secrets during a sleepless night; Extra by May (Adult Entertainment); E-mail by Feiffer (Grown Ups); and Ghost Light by McNally (Frankie and Johnny in the Claire de Lune) — in which a young man encounters an old actress on the stage of a soon-to-be demolished stage.
The benefit will play Nov. 17 at 7 PM — followed by a gala reception — and Nov. 18 at 8 PM at the O'Neill Theatre, 230 W. 49 Street. Tickets, priced at $250-$500 are available through Telecharge at (212) 239-6200 or online at www.telecharge.com.