Four Readying and a Funeral: Colder Than Here With Light, Rabe, Paulson, Murray Opens

News   Four Readying and a Funeral: Colder Than Here With Light, Rabe, Paulson, Murray Opens Lily Rabe, Sarah Paulson and Brian Murray star as a family dealing with the impending death of their matriarch, played by Judith Light, in MCC Theater's Colder Than Here, which opens Off-Broadway Sept. 28.
Judith Light in Colder Than Here.
Judith Light in Colder Than Here. Photo by Joan Marcus

Soho Theatre Company artistic director Abigail Morris stages the new Laura Wade play, previously seen at her London homestage, which started Sept. 7 at the Lucille Lortel Theatre for a run through Oct. 15.

The drama by Wade (Breathing Corpses) centers around Myra, "the perfect homemaker" whose latest project is organizing every detail of her own funeral. The intermissionless production is set in the living room of the family's home (which is invariably cold due to a broken boiler) and various burial sites (where the daughters and father meet to search for the perfect final resting place for their beloved).

Colder Than Here made its world premiere at London's Soho Theatre in February 2005 with Morris directing a cast that included Margot Leicester, Georgia Mackenzie, Anna Madeley and Michael Pennington.

Light, known to television audiences for her role as matriarch in "Who's the Boss?," has previously collaborated with MCC on Wit — both Off-Broadway (replacing original star Kathleen Chalfant) and for the national tour. Her other stage credits include Broadway's A Doll's House (1975) and Herzl (1976) and Off Broadway's Measure For Measure and Sorrows and Rejoicings.

Rabe — daughter to actress Jill Clayburgh (2005-06's A Naked Girl on the Appian Way and Barefoot in the Park, both on Broadway) and playwright David Rabe (Hurlyburly) — was recently lauded for her Broadway debut in Steel Magnolias. Other credits include White Jesus, Speaking Well of the Dead, The Crazy Girl and film roles in "Mona Lisa Smile" and "Never Again." Paulson recently played Laura to Jessica Lange's Amanda in the Broadway revival of The Glass Menagerie. The actress, who enjoyed a recurring role on HBO's "Deadwood," has also been seen Off-Broadway in Killer Joe and Horton Foote's Talking Pictures. Other credits include the films "Down With Love," "Serenity," "What Women Want," "The Other Sister," and television's "Leap of Faith" "Path to War," "Jack & Jill" and "American Gothic."

Murray was last seen on the MCC stage in 2003's Scattergood. The actor, recently seen in the revival of The Rivals, garnered a Tony Award nomination for his previous Broadway turn in the revival of The Crucible. His other credits include Much Ado About Nothing, Beckett/Albee, The Play About The Baby, Hobson's Choice, The Butterfly Collection and Uncle Vanya.

The design team for Colder Than Here features Jeff Cowie (set), Candice Donnelly (costume), Michael Chybowski (lighting), John Leonard (sound) and Brian H. Kim (projection).

MCC's 20th anniversary season will also include Underneath The Lintel playwright Glen Berger's The Wooden Breeks (Feb. 2-March 11, 2006) directed by Tony Award winner Garry Hynes (The Beauty Queen of Leenane) and the Fat Pig team of playwright Neil Labute (This Is How It Goes) and director Jo Bonney (Living Out) reunite for the world premiere of Swallowing Bicycles (May 17-June 24, 2006).

Tickets and subscriptions to the MCC season at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, 121 Christopher Street (between Bleecker and Hudson Streets), are available by calling (212) 279-4200. For more information, visit www.mcctheater.com.

From Left: Sarah Paulson and Lily Rabe in <i>Colder Than Here</i>.
From Left: Sarah Paulson and Lily Rabe in Colder Than Here. Photo by Joan Marcus
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