A world premiere by Richard Dresser, an American premiere by Frank McGuinness, a marionette show and eight new short plays about the media will make up the 1999 summer season at the Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor, Long Island.
Richard Dresser's Something in the Air will have its first production May 26-June 6 at the Bay Street. Dresser, author of Below the Belt, has previously had his Alone at the Beach produced at the tony Long Island theatre. The new piece is described as a black comedy about life, death and the value of a good coat. Melia Bensussen will direct.
Kate Burton, recently on Broadway in The Beauty Queen of Leenane, will star in the American debut of The Factory Girls, Frank McGuinness' first play (July 14-Aug. 1). McGuinness, the author of Someone to Watch Over Me, is best known for his recent, celebrated adaptations of Sophocles' Electra and Ibsen's A Doll's House, both of which were performed on Broadway. Factory Girls, which is a co-production with the Williamstown Theatre Festival, will be directed by Nye Heron.
Preceding Something in the Air will be Tinka's New Dress (May 26-June 6), a complex marionette show by Canadian puppeteer Ronnie Burkett. A somewhat dark and racy production, inspired by the underground puppet shows held in Nazi Germany, Tinka is meant only for adults.
Concluding the season is Fit to Print (Aug. 11-Sept. 5), directed by John Rando, David Ives' director of choice. For Print, the Bay Street has commissioned eight original short plays by eight dramatists. The subject: the news media. No writers have been confirmed, but some notable names are reportedly in play. Bay Street's annual Summer gala benefit bash will take place on July 10 and be hosted by Rosie O'Donnell.
In the past, the Bay Street has produced worlds premiere by Jon Robin Baitz, Lanford Wilson, Terrence McNally and Joe Pintauro. Notable productions -- some of which have traveled to New York -- include Baitz's Three Hotels, Cynthia Ozick's The Shawl and Baitz and McNally's House.
--By Robert Simonson