The Huntington Theatre Company's new artistic director, Nicholas Martin, will begin his first season with a revival of Sidney Kingsley's Dead End, Sept. 8-Oct. 8. Martin staged the play at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in 1998. That production's large cast featured Hope Davis, Marian Seldes, Campbell Scott and Robert Sean Leonard. Martin told Playbill On-Line last fall that those actors had been invited to recreate their roles at the Huntington. No cast has been announced at this time.
One of the hottest directors of the past season, Nicholas Martin replaces Peter Altman, who left the company after 18 seasons to become producing artistic director of Missouri Repertory Theatre.
The 2000-2001 season will also see the Boston debut of Fully Committed, the restaurant comedy by Becky Mode, which Martin directed to a successful, still-running Off-Broadway run. Actor Mark Setlock will recreate his performance as a harried reservations manager at a tony eatery. Martin will direct. The show runs Dec. 1-Dec. 31.
Also included in the season are productions of Jon Robin Baitz's The Fair Country, James Baldwin's The Amen Corner and The Invention of Love by Tom Stoppard.
The season runs as follows: • Dead End by Sidney Kingsley, directed by Nicholas Martin, Sept. 8- Oct. 8.
• A Fair Country by Jon Robin Baitz, Oct. 27-Nov. 19.
• Fully Committed by Becky Mode, directed by Nicholas Martin, starring Mark Setlock, Dec. 1-Dec. 31.
• Amphitryon by Moliere, translation by Richard Wilbur, directed by Darko Tresnjak, Dec. 29, 2000-Jan. 28, 2001.
• The Invention of Love by Tom Stoppard, March 9-April 8, 2001.
• The Amen Corner by James Baldwin, a co-production with the Goodman Theater, directed by Chuck Smith, May 18-June 17, 2001.
Speaking with Playbill On-Line last fall, Martin said his other plans for his new headquarters were a possible remounting of another Williamstown outing, Thornton Wilder's The Matchmaker starring Andrea Martin, a Richard II with Leonard, and a Macbeth featuring Victor Garber. Whether these projects are still in the works is not clear.
Martin first began to earn attention in theatre circles as an associate artistic director at Playwrights Horizons. His most visible project there was Sophistry, starring Hawke, Flockhart, Anthony Rapp and Austin Pendleton. He made a bigger splash with Full Gallop, Mary Louise Wilson's one-woman tribute to fashion editor Diana Vreeland.
But it wasn't until last season that Martin's talents truly came to the fore. He scored back-to-back critical hits with John Guare's Bosoms and Neglect at the Signature Theatre Company and Christopher Durang's Betty's Summer Vacation at Playwrights Horizons. Over the summer of 1999, he piloted Tennessee Williams' Camino Real (again with Hawke) at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. In 1999-2000, he manned Fully Committed at the Vineyard Theatre and Time of the Cuckoo with Debra Monk at Lincoln Center Theater. Additionally, Betty's Summer Vacation is expected to reopen this summer for a commercial Off-Broadway run.
Season tickets for the Huntington are priced $106-$264 through May 26 and $118-$277 thereafter, and are available by phone at (617) 266-0800, at the Huntington Box Office, 264 Huntington Avenue or online at www.bu.edu/huntington.
--By Robert Simonson