Under the leadership of artistic director Brian Kulick and executive director Jessica R. Jenen, CSC will open its season in October with Cumpsty as Shakespeare's Richard III, to be followed by the world premiere of Ives' new 17th-century play, New Jerusalem, and then Wiest starring as selfish actress Arkadina in Chekhov's The Seagull.
Brian Kulick will direct Richard III, Oct. 31-Dec. 9, featuring acclaimed actor Cumpsty (Broadway's 42nd Street, Democracy, Copenhagen), who was CSC's Hamlet and Richard II under Kulick in the past two seasons.
In January 2008 CSC will present the world premiere of New Jerusalem by David Ives, directed by Tony Award winner Walter Bobbie (Chicago). "New Jerusalem focuses on the expulsion of the legendary philosopher Baruch de Spinoza from the Jewish community of Amsterdam in the 17th century for his controversial ideas," according to CSC.
New Jerusalem will play Jan. 2-Feb. 10, 2008. Ives is known for his plays Polish Joke and All in the Timing, and has worked with Bobbie on projects including concert adaptations of musicals for the Encores! series.
In March 2008 two-time Academy Award-winning actress Dianne Wiest ("Hannah and Her Sisters," "Bullets Over Broadway") stars as Russian actress-mother Arkadina in The Seagull. The production inaugurates CSC's commitment to exploring Chekhov's body of work in the coming seasons. The director will be announced in the coming weeks. The Seagull will play from March 5-April 13, 2008.
The 2007-08 CSC season — the troupe's 40th — will also include the return of its popular programs The First Look Festival, The Young Company, and the Open Rehearsal Series. Details will be announced at a later date.
Memberships to Classic Stage Company productions are available at various price levels, including the flexible Masterpass membership, which in addition to prime seats, entitles members to participate in CSC special series, including their sold-out Open Rehearsal events. Memberships will be available beginning on June 1. For further information, call the theatre's box office at (212) 677-4210, ext. 10, visit the theatre in person at 136 East 13th Street, or go to www.classicstage.org.