Drama Dept.'s Torchbearers Opens Off-Broadway, Feb. 23

News   Drama Dept.'s Torchbearers Opens Off-Broadway, Feb. 23 A trio of stalwart theatre ladies -- Marian Seldes, Joan Copeland and Faith Prince -- lead the cast of the Drama Dept.'s revival of George Kelly's The Torch-Bearers. The production, which began previews at the Greenwich House Theatre on Feb. 11, will open Feb. 23 and run through March 4. Novice director and full-time actor, Dylan Baker, will take the helm.

A trio of stalwart theatre ladies -- Marian Seldes, Joan Copeland and Faith Prince -- lead the cast of the Drama Dept.'s revival of George Kelly's The Torch-Bearers. The production, which began previews at the Greenwich House Theatre on Feb. 11, will open Feb. 23 and run through March 4. Novice director and full-time actor, Dylan Baker, will take the helm.

Prince, last seen on the stage in the Roundabout Theatre Company revival of Little Me, has been concentrating on her new cabaret career of late. Her solo show, "Leap of Faith," has been seen at the Firebird Cafe and Joe's Pub, among other spaces. This will be her first straight dramatic role in some time. Following the production, she will join the cast of Broadway's The Dead.

Seldes has been busy of late, appearing, during the past year, in a Carnegie Hall concert reading of Noel Coward's Sail Away, Irish Rep's Dear Liar, and Broadway's Ring Round the Moon.

Copeland's credits include the original production of Arthur Miller's The American Clock, The Extra Man (Obie Award) and, more recently, Over the River and Through the Woods.

Also in the cast are Claire Beckman, David Garrison, Judy Blazer, Ralph Cole Jr., Albert Macklin, Susan Mansur, Don Mayo and Paul Mullins. Baker's many acting credits include Tartuffe, The Common Pursuit, Eastern Standard, La Bete, Pride's Crossing and That Championship Season. He is an original member of the Drama Dept., as is his wife, Becky Ann Baker (June Moon).

George Kelly, born in 1887, flourished in the 1920s and is best known for the oft-revived The Show-Off. He won a Pulitzer Prize for his next play, Craig's Wife, about a fetishistically possessive woman. Kelly began his theatre career as a vaudeville actor, and some of his experiences are no doubt reflected in his first play, The Torchbearers, a satire on amateur theatricals.

--By Robert Simonson