Steppenwolf Theatre Company ensemble members Alan Wilder and Mariann Mayberry will star in Hysteria, the Terry Johnson play set to begin previews at the Chicago theatre Nov. 26. Official opening is Dec. 5 for a run through Jan. 22, 2000.
John Malkovich, probably Steppenwolf's most famous member, will direct Hysteria, a comedy about Sigmund Freud's last days in a quiet London suburb. Malkovich, well known to film audiences -- most recently, from a film which actually bears his name, "Being John Malkovich" -- rarely takes the stage at Steppenwolf, or elsewhere, anymore, preferring to work behind the scenes. Other directing credits include Libra.
Wilder will play the father of psychoanalysis himself. Marc Vann will play artist Salvador Dali, who, in the work, constantly berates the doctor. Also in the cast is Nicholas Rudall as Abraham Yahuda.
Johnson's other works include The Libertine and Insignificance.
* In other Steppenwolf news, Warren Leight's Side Man, after conquering New York, has now triumphed in Chicago. Steppenwolf's production of the Tony-winning play, which began Sept. 16, has extended its run one week to Nov. 13.
Steppenwolf ensemble member Gary Cole will join the cast on Oct. 24, replacing fellow company member Rick Snyder in the role of Gene, the story's side man trumpet player. Cole is probably best known from the television series "Midnight Caller." Rondi Reed plays Terry, Gene's long suffering wife, while Garret Dillahunt play their peace-making son, Clifford. Anna D. Shapiro directs.
Sources close to the Chicago production indicate that the show may transfer to a commercial run after its slated stay at Steppenwolf. The theatre, however, said there was no talk of such a move.
Side Man won the 1999 Tony Award as best play, also nabbing a Tony for actor Frank Wood. The production will end its run on Broadway on Oct. 31, and then begin a run at the Kennedy Center's Eisenhower Theater, Nov. 3-28. Andrew McCarthy and Michael O'Keefe are set to star in the DC mounting.
The Steppenwolf mainstage season runs as follows:
* Hysteria (Nov. 26,1999-Jan. 22, 2000, opening Dec. 5), Terry Johnson's comedy about Sigmund Freud's last days in England, in 1939, directed by John Malkovich.
* Marber's Closer (Feb. 3-March 26, 2000, opening Feb. 13), with Abagail Deser directing. Closer's quartet of dysfunctional romantic partners were originally played on Broadway by Natasha Richardson, Anna Friel, Rubert Graves and Ciaran Hinds, under Marber's direction.
* Gary Sinise will star as McMurphy and Amy Morton as Nurse Ratched in Dale Wasserman's adaptation of Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, (April 6-June 4, 2000, opening April 16). Terry Kinney will direct. Sinise and Kinney are co-founders of Steppenwolf. The show will be presented at Steppenwolf by arrangement with Michael Leavitt and Fox Theatricals. As for a possible transfer to Broadway in the 2000-01 season, a production spokesperson told PBOL (March 25), "It's our hope that will happen; Fox Theatricals owns the New York rights, and that's why we're with them."
* Valparaiso (July 6-Aug. 27, 2000, opening July 16), Don DeLillo's exploration of one man's ordinary business trip to Valparaiso, IN., directed by Frank Galati. In Valparaiso, which premiered earlier this year at MA's A.R.T., a man who took the wrong plane to a mysterious destination now finds himself the obsessive focus of interviews and talk shows. With Valparaiso, world-renowned novelist DeLillo ("White Noise," "Libra" and "Underworld") made his second venture into the theater world. His first play, The Dayroom, premiered at the A.R.T. in 1986. The novel "Libra," about Lee Harvey Oswald, was adapted into a play by Malkovich and produced by Steppenwolf in 1994.
The 1999-2000 season at Steppenwolf's Studio Space runs as follows:
* Her Name Was Danger (Nov. 17-Dec. 12), a Lookinglass Theatre Steppenwolf co- production, created and directed by David Catlin.
* The Infidel, by Bruce Norris (Feb. 24-March 26, 2000), directed by Anna D. Shapiro.
* Redmoon's Hunchback (May 17-June 11, 2000), a Redmoon Theater-Steppenwolf co production, by Jim Lasko, based on Victor Hugo's novel, music by Michael Zerang.
The 1999-2000 Steppenwolf Garages season runs as follows:
* Kenneth Lonergan's This Is Our Youth (Oct. 14-Nov. 14), in collaboration with Roadworks Productions.
* Austin Pendleton's Orson's Shadow (Jan. 13-Feb. 13, 2000); Orson Welles, Laurence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, Joan Plowright and Kenneth Tynan are the quintet featured in actor-director-dramatist Austin Pendleton's latest work.
--By Robert Simonson