The Steppenwolf Theatre Company production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, already seen in the theatre's hometown of Chicago, as well as in London, will stick around New York for awhile longer. Originally scheduled for a 99-performance run through June 17, the Terry Kinney directed revival of Dale Wasserman's drama has now extended through Sunday, July 29, as reported by the New York Times and confirmed by production spokesperson Richard Kornberg (April 20).
Kornberg noted that the revival's advance sale is in excess of $2 million, "which is really wonderful for a straight play that was only selling tickets through mid-June," Kornberg said. The entire Steppenwolf cast is expected to stay with the show through the extended run.
The Broadway cast matches that of the London and Chicago mountings, with Gary Sinise playing McMurphy (the Jack Nicholson role in the 1975 film) and Amy Morton playing Nurse Ratched. Also repeating their roles are Rick Snyder, K. Todd Freeman (The Song of Jacob Zulu) as patient friendly doctor, and Mariann Mayberry, all Steppenwolf ensemble members.
Rounding out the large cast are returning performers Ross Lehman, Tim Sampson, Eric Johner, Sarah Charipar, Stephanie Childers, Misha Kuznetsov, Danton Stone, Jeanine Morick, Bill Noble, Ron O.J. Parson, Christine Stolte, John Watson, Sr. and Afram Bill Williams.
The design team includes Robert Brill (sets), Laura Bauer (costumes), Kevin Rigdon (lights) and Rob Milburn (sound). Sinise founded Steppenwolf with Kinney and Jeff Perry in Chicago in the mid-70s. He starred in dozens of the company's productions, including famous stagings of Balm in Gilead, True West and The Grapes of Wrath. In the last several years, he has turned into the Oscar-nominated film star of "Forrest Gump," "Apollo 13," "Ransom" and "Reindeer Games." This is his first New York stage acting credit since 1990's Grapes of Wrath.
Kinney has previously directed A Streetcar Named Desire, A Clockwork Orange and ...And a Nightingale Sang. As an actor, he has starred in The Grapes of Wrath (with Sinise) and Buried Child (directed by Sinise), both on Broadway.
Morton was seen on the New York stage recently in Tina Landau's Space at the Public Theater. At Steppenwolf, her credits include Three Days of Rain and The Berlin Circle, and, as director, Mizlansky/Zilinsky.
The last show Steppenwolf brought to Broadway was Sam Shepard's Buried Child, starring Lois Smith and James Gammon. Other noteworthy Steppenwolf-New York transfers include Orphans, Balm in Gilead and The Song of Jacob Zulu.
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is a Dale Wasserman stage version of Ken Kesey's novel. The book was also made into the famous 1975 film starring Jack Nicholson. The Steppenwolf show — which was aimed at London and New York from the very start — began previews at Steppenwolf April 6, 2000, and officially opened April 16. Thereafter, it extended several times, finally concluding in late June. Cuckoo then bowed in London on July 27, 2000, for a run through Aug. 5, at the Barbican as part of the BITE:00 Festival there.
The original 1963 Broadway production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest starred Kirk Douglas, Gene Wilder, Anthony Daniels and Joan Tetzel. It ran only 82 performances, 17 shy of the current revival's projected stay.