Complete Casting Announced for New York Premiere of Close Ties

News   Complete Casting Announced for New York Premiere of Close Ties Elizabeth Diggs' Close Ties will make its New York premiere at the Ensemble Studio Theatre Sept. 17.

The production marks the 2008-2009 season opener for the Off-Broadway company. Under the direction of Pamela Berlin (Steel Magnolias), Close Ties will officially open Sept. 25 and play through Oct. 12.

The company comprises Jack Davidson, Julie Fitzpatrick, Fiona Gallagher, David Gelles Hurwitz, Polly Lee, Carole Monferdini, Judith Roberts and Tommy Schrider.

Diggs' ensemble play, according to press notes, "tells the story of three generations of the Frye family gathering at their vacation home in the Berkshires. The center for all of them has always been the willful matriarch, Josephine. The play reveals what happens to the very fabric of a family as they have to face the realization that this once indomitable center can no longer hold. It is a play that celebrates with humor and truth the mystery and very nature of family."

"One of our goals this season is to reinforce the 'ensemble' part of our name by presenting larger cast plays. Close Ties will allow our member actors, with their shared history, the rare opportunity to play three generations of the same family in this wonderful play," explained E.S.T. artistic director William Carden in a statement.

The creative team includes Michael Schweikardt (set design), Suzanne Chesney (costume design), Chris Dallos (lighting design) and David Lawson (sound design). Elizabeth Diggs has penned Nightingale, Goodbye Freddy, American Beef, Custer's Luck and Mother/Daughter/Mother, as well as the book for the Tom Jones-Harvey Schmidt musical Mirette.

For tickets to Close Ties, priced $30, visit www.ensemblestudiotheatre.org or phone (212) 352-3101.

The Ensemble Studio Theatre is located at 549 West 52nd Street in Manhattan.