Cherry Jones will repeat her Mark Taper Forum performance as a search and rescue pilot in Tongue of a Bird when the Ellen McLaughlin play reaches New York's Public Theatre this March. Her co-stars Marian Seldes and Diana Verona, however, will not be joining the New York cast, Jones told Playbill On-Line (Feb. 4).
"Diane has commitments and Marian has commitments," said Jones. "Of course, I'm heartsick, but I'm sure we'll have a great cast in New York." One person who will be in the Public cast, added Jones, is pre-teen actress Julia McIlvaine, who played opposite Jones in Lincoln Center Theatre's production of Tina Howe's Pride's Crossing.
Jones, Ashley Johnson, Sharon Lawrence, Seldes and Venora are the featured players in the L.A. staging of Ellen McLaughlin's Bird, which opened Jan. 14 at the Taper for a 3-week run, ending this weekend.
Taper resident director Lisa Peterson stages the drama, which tells the story of an ace pilot (Jones) hunting for an abducted young girl (Johnson). The Taper is co-producing with the Joseph Papp Public Theatre.
The drama is described as being "rich in poetic text and stunning imagery," and as defining "a quest that transcends time itself as it soars toward its haunting, inexorable climax." Bird was originally commissioned by the Taper and developed in the Taper's 1995-96 New Work Festival. It had its world premiere at the Intiman Theatre in September, 1997 and was subsequently produced at the Almeida Theatre in London.
Jones won acclaim last season in Pride's Crossing. She is expected in New York next season in a Broadway revival of O'Neill's A Moon for the Misbegotten. Jones said (Feb. 4) the O'Neill is still in the works and no theatre or cast have been selected.
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