Franz Stars in McGuinness Play, Murray Is Prospero, Scherer's in Broadway at Pitt Public in 2004-05

News   Franz Stars in McGuinness Play, Murray Is Prospero, Scherer's in Broadway at Pitt Public in 2004-05 Pittsburgh Public Theater announced its 2004-05 season March 8, with Anna in the Tropics, Brian Murray as Prospero in The Tempest and the American premiere of Irish author Frank McGuinness' The Bird Sanctuary among the offerings.

This fall marks the start of the 30th season for the resident troupe. Ted Pappas is the artistic director.

Tony Award-winner Elizabeth Franz will star in The Bird Sanctuary, directed by Kent Paul, April 14-May 15, 2005. Franz will be an eccentric artist named Eleanor, in what's billed as a witty drama. "Eleanor's paintings—depicting members of her dysfunctional Irish family as well as her beloved bird sanctuary—are colorful outlets for a life of frustration and disappointment," according to the announcement. "When her siblings return to Dublin to sell the run-down family home she still inhabits, old hurts, rivalries and secrets rise quickly to the surface and disrupt an uneasy peace."

John Scherer (By Jeeves at Pittsburgh Public and Broadway) will star in the revival of Phillip Dunning and George Abbott's Broadway, one of Pappas' favorite American plays (he'll direct it), Sept. 23-Oct. 24. First produced in 1926, "this Prohibition-era melodrama tells the story of chorus girl Billie Moore and her struggle to choose between a good-hearted nightclub hoofer and a dashing but dangerous bootlegger.  Flavored by the antics of vaudevillians and gangsters, this rarely produced work provides a perfect mix of comedy and drama."

Marcia Milgrom Dodge will direct and choreograph Ain't Misbehavin', the revue of Fats Waller tunes, Jan. 20-Feb. 20, 2005. Rob Ruggiero directs Anna in the Tropics, the 2003 Pulitzer Prize-winning play about life in a Cuban American cigar factory in Florida, Nov. 4-Dec. 5.

Pappas directs The Tempest with Brian Murray, of Broadway (The Crucible) and Off-Broadway (Beckett/Albee), March 3-April 3, 2005. Kenneth Lonergan's play about moral choices and heroic behavior, Lobby Hero, plays May 26-June 26, 2005.

The 2003-04 world-premiere of Rob Zellers and Gene Collier's The Chief, a one-man play about Pittsburgh sports legend, Art Rooney, Sr., was the single highest-grossing production in Pittsburgh Public Theater's history. Tom Atkins will return to the Public to reprise his star turn in a very special holiday run of The Chief, Dec. 10-26.

Reduced Shakespeare Company will show up Jan. 6-8, 2005, to present their newest show, All the Great Books (abridged), for four performances only.

The new season marks the beginning of a new, free reading series, Public Exposure, billed as a year-long celebration of new American plays.

For more information on subscription packages, call (412) 316-1600 or visit ppt.org.

 

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