In the tradition of Irish Repertory Theatre's 1999 hit, Dear Liar, which chronicled the written coorespondance of Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw and actress Mrs. Patrick Campbell, the company turns to another two hander, this one based on the letters and one lengthy conversation between Irish poet W.B. Yeats and art collector John Quinn. An Evening in New York with W.B. Yeats and John Quinn plays the Rep Studio March 5-31 with an opening March 10.
On Feb. 22, 1920, secretary Jeanne Foster transcribed a wide-ranging conversation between Yeats and uber-patron Quinn (his other favorite writers included James Joyce and T.S. Eliot). That evening at the Algonquin Hotel, they discussed politics, art and religion as Yeats prepared to set off on a lecture tour of the United States.
Actors and adaptors Neil Bradley and Paul Kerry recreate the conversation interspersed with bits of Yeats' poetry, memoirs and letters. Bradley's Off-Broadway credits include Henry V with Kevin Kline, Richard Foreman's Lava and Cigy of Amateurs and Anne Bogart's Kaetchen Von Heilbronn. At Huntington Theatre, Kerry starred in the American premiere of The Last Hurrah, as well as Midsummer Night's Dream, directed by Mary Zimmerman.
Tickets are $35-$40. The Irish Repertory Theatre is located at 132 West 22nd Street between 6th and 7th Avenues. For reservations, call (212) 727-2737. Irish Repertory Theatre is on the web at http://www.irishrepertorytheatre.com.
— By Christine Ehren