Presented as part of LATW's monthly "The Play's the Thing" series, many of the productions will reunite the original Broadway and Off-Broadway cast members of the various plays. Their performances will subsequently be broadcast on the nationally syndicated radio theatre series of the same title.
The season begins with George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart's Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy Once in A Lifetime, running Oct. 21-25. Moss Hart's son, Chris Hart, will direct Edward Asner ("Mary Tyler Moore") and Jonathan Silverman (Brighton Beach Memoirs) as a couple of "down-and-out vaudevillians who hatch a hare-brained scheme to 'make it big' in Tinsel Town. Their plan? To open a voice academy for the witless stars of silent movies. The only things standing in their way are ditzy starlets and power-hungry movie moguls."
Simon Templeman and John Vickery will appear in Moisés Kaufman's Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde, running Nov. 18-22. Brendon Fox stages the play that incorporates trial documents and other historical accounts to trace Wilde's descent from celebrated playwright to ruined man.
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage's Crumbs from the Table of Joy will run Dec. 9-13. Seret Scott directs a cast including Charlayne Woodard (The Night Watcher), Russell Hornsby (Seven Guitars) and Deidrie Henry (Coming Home). "The Crump family is in trouble," read press notes. "Godfrey is widowed and adrift, and his teen daughters, Ernestine and Ermina, have immersed themselves in the glamorous illusions of Hollywood to escape the racial prejudice of 1950s Brooklyn. But things changes quickly when free-spirited Aunt Lily shows up. Suddenly, Godfrey remarries a white woman, Ermina discovers boys, and Ernestine is torn between embracing bebop and the Communist Party."
Tony Award-winning direction Barlett Sher (South Pacific, Light in the Piazza) will reunite with his Awake and Sing! (2006 Broadway revival) cast members Mark Ruffalo (This Is Our Youth) and Lauren Ambrose (Exit the King) for a staging of that 1935 Clifford Odets drama that runs Jan. 13-17, 2010. Awake and Sing! is described as a "moving portrait of a Jewish immigrant family crowded together in a cramped Bronx tenement and laid low by the Great Depression." Evan Smith's recent Off-Broadway comedy The Savannah Disputation, will follow, playing Feb. 17-21, 2010. Gwenn Victor directs Bruce Davison (The Physicists) as a Catholic priest who is unwittingly pitted against a perky evangelical missionary during a dinner party at the home of two Catholic sisters.
The world premiere of RFK: The Journey to Justice, created by playwrights Murray Horwitz and Jonathan Estrin, will run March 17-21, 2010. LATW commissioned the docudrama that offers a "behind-the-scenes look at the high-stakes political drama that dared the country and its citizens to look into the mirror - and change. Robert Kennedy had an early mistrust of Dr. Martin Luther King and his tactics, but became one of the civil rights movement's greatest champions." John Rubinstein directs. Following the LA debut, the work will embark on a two-month mini-tour to several colleges across the U.S.
Three-time Tony nominee Kate Burton (Hedda Gabler), who starred in the 2005 revival of W. Somerset Maugham's The Constant Wife, will reprise her performance alongside John de Lancie (The Physicists) and Rosalind Ayres (Beloved Clara) in the LATW engagement that runs April 14-18, 2010. "There's something Constance Middleton's friends are dying to tell her: her husband is having an affair - with her best friend! Despite their hints, Constance remains ever cool, and seemingly oblivious. Or is she?"
Tony Award winner Frank Wood will revisit his acclaimed performance in Warren Leight's Side Man, opposite original Off-Broadway cast member Edie Falco (Frankie and Johnny) and Broadway replacement Scott Wolf, in the production that runs May 12-16, 2010. Side Man, according to L.A.T.W., is "a touching and funny tale that spans three decades, capturing the pulse and climate of the New York jazz scene. Alternating between a New York City apartment and a smoke-filled jazz club, Clifford re-counts the poignant story of his jazz trumpeter father, the failure of his parents' marriage, and the decline of jazz as popular entertainment."
Oliver Goldsmith's She Stoops to Conquer will star Tony Award winner Roy Dotrice (A Moon for the Misbegotten) and James Marsters ("Smallville"), running June 16-20, 2010. Martin Jarvis directs the work in which "Charles Marlow needs a lesson in the art of love. He longs for a wife, but finds it easier to have a bit on the side. The barmaid seems fair game - but there's more to her than meets the eye."
The final offering will be Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's Doctor Cerberus), starring Adam Arkin (Brooklyn Boy) and JoBeth Williams (The Night Is a Child), from July 14-18, 2010. Bart DeLorenzo directs the play about "thirteen-year-old Franklin Robertson, [who] is trying to survive adolescence. His parents don't understand him, his brother torments him, he has no friends - and he's more interested in the high school quarterback than in any girl. The one bright spot in his life is the glow of the black-and-white TV in his parents' basement. Here, he worships at the altar of the Saturday Night Horror Movie, hosted by the eerie Dr. Cerberus. Before long, Franklin is convinced that only by going on the show will his life be redeemed - by Dr. Cerberus himself."
For tickets to any of "The Play's the Thing" productions at the Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Boulevard, call the L.A. Theatre Works box office at (310) 827-0889.
For more information visit latw.org.