Gutierrez to Conduct Horovitz's English Class w/Didi Conn OB, Nov. 15

News   Gutierrez to Conduct Horovitz's English Class w/Didi Conn OB, Nov. 15
 
Two-time Tony-winner Gerald Gutierrez directs The Primary English Class at the Minetta Lane Theatre in Greenwich Village. Previews began Oct. 27 for an opening night, Nov. 15.

Two-time Tony-winner Gerald Gutierrez directs The Primary English Class at the Minetta Lane Theatre in Greenwich Village. Previews began Oct. 27 for an opening night, Nov. 15.

The comedy, which stars Didi Conn, is about a group of students, none of whom share a common language. They gather for a crash course in English. Didi Conn will play the teacher, Debbie Wastba -- a role created by Diane Keaton.

Conn last appeared in New York in Neil Simon's Lost in Yonkers. She also acted in a 1978 mounting of Ionesco's The Lesson at the Harold Clurman Theatre and in 1980's Division Street at CA's Mark Taper Forum. Her television and film credits include Grease, Another You, "Benson," and "Shining Time Station," where she is a regular player.

Conn told Newsday (Nov. 12) the theme of English Class has to do with coping with the frustration of trying to be understood. "Where there is no communication, there is war," she said. "So you really have to dig deep into yourself to find other ways of communicating." Conn noted that dealing with a family member who is autistic also helped her get a handle on the role. "Ultimately, it's love that helps you to break through the barrier."

Designing Class are Derek McLane (set), Catherine Zuber (costumes), Peter Kaczorowski (lighting) and Guy Sherman (sound). Gutierrez last directed Honour on Broadway. His other credits include Ivanov, The Heiress, Northeast Local and The Most Happy Fella, all for Lincoln Center.

Other Horovitz plays include Line, The Indian Wants The Bronx, Rats and the Broadway Jason Robards & Judith Ivey starrer, Park Your Car in Harvard Yard.

Tickets ($30-$45) for Primary English Class are available via Ticketmaster, (212) 307-4100.

-- By Sean McGrath, David Lefkowitz and Robert Simonson

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