As Off-Broadway's Drama Dept. preps for its latest production, the troupe will present a series of Monday night readings in March and April, including works by Charles Busch, Douglas Carter Beane and Eugene O'Neill.
The series began on March 18 with Frank Pugliese's The Summer Wind. Next up is Charles Busch's Shanghai Moon. Playwright performer Busch, author of Broadway's The Tale of the Allergist's Wife, will himself star in the piece on March 25, along with Seikya Billman, Marcy McGuigan and Albert Macklin.
Drama Dept. artistic director Beane will provide the next text, Lysistrata Jones. The show, which has music and lyrics by Lewis Flinn, is described as being "in the tradition of Carmen Jones and Cleopatra Jones" and is a musical adaptation of Aristophanes' company about a group of Greek women who deny their warrior men sex in order to put an end to an ongoing war. The cast will feature Sara Barnett, Michael Cyril Creighton, Daisy Eagan, John Maria, Troy Metcalf and Noah Weisberg.
Over the years, Beane has proved the company's most steady supplier of scripts, including As Bees in Honey Drown, the theatre's biggest success to date. Lysistrata Jones will be read on April 1.
Wrapping up the program on April 8 is Eugene O'Neill's seldom seen Marco's Millions. Randolph Curtis Rand will direct. Admission is free. All reading will take place at the Greenwich House Theater, 27 Barrow Street in Greenwich Village.
—By Robert Simonson