Cast Set for The New Group (naked) Staging of Barry Levey's Critical Darling

News   Cast Set for The New Group (naked) Staging of Barry Levey's Critical Darling The cast is set for upcoming The New Group (naked) — a new production division of the Off-Broadway company — presentation of Barry Levey's Critical Darling.

New Group associate artistic director Ian Morgan directs the work set to begin Feb. 19 for a run through March 5 at the Lion Theatre in Theatre Row — where the company is currently in residence.

Set at a hotel in New Mexico, Critical Darling follows three aging British émigrés taking their last stab at artistic success and domestic happiness on the eve of World War II when their lives are sent into turmoil by a radical young Czech composer with a new concept: open homosexuality.

The cast features Elizabeth Hess (M. Butterfly), Mark Jacoby (Ragtime, Show Boat), Daniel London (More Lies About Jerzy) and Andrew Polk (Biloxi Blues national tour).

Critical Darling features a design team that includes Peter R. Feuchtwanger (set), S. Ryan Schmidt (lighting), Matt Sherwin (sound) and Deirdre Wegner (costumes).

The lower-budget New Group division (naked) "sees financial restriction as creative opportunity." The aim of the New Group's new group is to present two new plays each season in a forum that will allow artists a place "away from commercial pressures and soaring production costs." The inaugural production, David Cale's A Likely Story, played Dec 1-18, 2004. The New Group kicked off its mainstage season with Michael Murphy's Sin (A Cardinal Deposed) starring John Cullum. The company's artistic director Scott Elliott stages the current revival of David Rabe's Hurlyburly with stars Bobby Cannavale, Ethan Hawke, Josh Hamilton, Catherine Kellner, Parker Posey and Wallace Shawn. Next up is a co-presentation (with The Play Company) of the American premiere of Sascha Dugdale translation of Vladimir and Oleg Presnyakov's Terrorism directed by James Lapine (Into The Woods, Fran's Bed).

Tickets ($15) to Critical Darling at The Lion Theater in Theatre Row, 410 West 42nd St, can be purchased by calling (212) 279-4200. For more information, visit www.thenewgroup.org.