Artistic director Jim Simpson will stage the work, which will begin Oct. 10 at the downtown Manhattan theatre company. The limited run opens Oct. 28 and performs through Nov. 1. "Based on the last days of Marcus Porcius Cato Uticensis (95-46 B.C.)," the 1713-penned Cato centers on "a Roman Statesman who took sides with Pompey in an unsuccessful civil war against Julius Caesar," as show notes reveal. "The play takes place in the city of Utica, where Cato and a small Roman Senate stand ready to defend the last vestige of the Roman Republic against Caesar."
De Shields (The Full Monty) stars in the title role opposite Cathey ("The Wire," The Green Bird). They will be joined in the ensemble by Anthony Cochrane (The Coast of Utopia), Brian O'Neill and Christian Baskous (Two September) as well as five members of The Bat Theater Company, The Flea's resident acting company.
The design team includes Zachary Tinkelman (set and lights), Claudia Brown (costumes) and David Prittie (graphics).
The Flea recently presented Will Eno's Oh, the Humanity and Other Exclamations starring Marisa Tomei; Peter Handke's Offending the Audience; and Beau Willimon's Hurricane Katrina-based drama Lower Ninth, featuring Gaius Charles and James McDaniel. Slated for this season is Roger Rosenblatt's I Must Be Off (Nov. 13-30).
Tickets to shows at The Flea Theater, 41 White Street (between Broadway and Church St.), are available by calling (212) 352-3101 or by visiting theflea.org.