Olivier Award nominee Stafford Arima (London's Ragtime, the regional Ace and Off-Broadway's Altar Boyz) directs the five-actor reading to feature Lynn Cohen ("Sex and the City," Lincoln Center's Ivanov, Off-Broadway's The Model Apartment), Noah Galvin (Ace), Carrie Preston (Broadway's Festen, The Tempest, TV's "Lost") as Esther, Claudia Shear (Dirty Blonde) and Robert Stanton (Broadway's The Coast of Utopia, Off-Broadway's Fuddy Meers, All in the Timing). The presentation will be at 4 PM Jan. 29 at New York Theatre Workshop's 4th Street Theatre, 83 E. 4th Street between Second Avenue and Bowery.
According to notes from the playwright, "Esther Demsack [Preston] thinks she has finally arrived. Called to the office of prominent New York publisher David Brewster [Stanton], Esther is horrified to discover it's not her novel he wants — it's her, as governess to his 12-year-old son, Everette [Galvin], cute as a button, smart as a whip, and about as straight as Charles Nelson Reilly. Everette wants desperately to turn Esther into his very own Auntie Mame, and with the help of his crazy Lebanese neighbors [Shear and Cohen], he almost does. But Esther resists Everette's manic attempts at Mamedom, and digs deeper to find the dark secret that is haunting him and the entire Brewster family."
Finnegan's other plays include Any Solid Color Other Than Black (two-time Eugene O'Neill Theater Center National Playwrights Conference semi-finalist, MCC Theater reading); Begin Measured Mile; At the End; The Dander of Female Poplars, or One Queens Parade; and Little Boy Lost.
For more information, e-mail EstherDemsack@gmail.com.