Having finished doing staged readings of all nine plays in Horton Foote's "Orphans' Home Cycle," the Lost World company of Whittier, CA, now turns its attention to something even rarer: a Foote play penned in the 1960s but never produced. The Day Emily Married, about well-intentioned parents unintentionally stifling their daughter, lay dormant in the playwrights archives until three years ago, when it received a workshop in Maryland.
Now Emily will receive its first, full, world-premiere staging, starting July 14 for a run on weekends until (at least) July 30. Crystal Brian will stage the play, which, like so many Foote works (including the aforementioned cycle plays) is set in fictitious Harrison, TX. According to spokesperson Chris Van Ness, The Lost World previously staged such Foote plays as Laura Dennis and The Habitation of Dragons.
Starring in Emily will be Joan Chodorow, Stephanie Dunnam, Beth Grant, William Dennis Hunt, Rebecca O'Brien, Veronica Thompson, Cameron Watson and Sarah Zinsser. Designing the show are Seanne Farmer (sets), David Palmer (lighting) and Robert Velasquez (costumes).
Author Foote received Academy Awards for Best Screenplay for "To Kill a Mockingbird" and "Tender Mercies." Once represented by an entire season at New York's Signature Theatre Company, Foote will contribute The Last of the Thortons, the story of Alberta Thorton, the last surviving member of a powerful clan, to that theatre's 2000 retrospective of the playwrights represented in its last ten seasons. He also recently directed daughter Daisy Foote's When They Speak of Rita, currently in an extended run at New York's Primary Stages Theatre.
For tickets ($12.50-$15) and information on The Day Emily Married, at the Shannon Center on the campus of Whittier College (20 minutes outside Los Angeles), call (562) 907 4203. -- By David Lefkowitz