The late Harry Kondoleon's final play, Saved and Destroyed, will finally have its day Nov. 19 and boast an estimable cast of seasoned theatre actors. Featured in the cast are such familiar faces as Julie Halston, David Greenspan and Larry Pine. All will fall under the direction of Craig Lucas, who pilots the work at Rattlestick Theatre in Greenwich Village. Performances began Nov. 15.
Halston was recently seen on Broadway in The Man Who Came to Dinner at the Roundabout Theatre Company. The Obie-winning Greenspan, also a playwright (The Home Show Pieces), has recently become a steady acting presence Off-Broadway, appearing in plays at the Worth Street Theatre, Primary Stages and elsewhere. Pine most recently acted in Wallace Shawn's The Designated Mourner. Other credits include Mizlansky/Zilinsky and Bus Stop.
Also in the cast are Michi Barall, Scotty Bloch, Michael Doyle and Ray Anthony Thomas.
Lucas' plays include Reckless, Blue Window and Marry Me a Little. His latest, Stranger, recently opened at the Vineyard Theatre.
Kondoleon, author of such plays as Christmas on Mars and Love Diatribe, died of AIDS in 1994. In Saved and Destroyed, Kondoleon wrote about what he knew: the theatre. The multi-layered story deals with a group of "bitter, recriminatory" actors performing a play about a similar group of "bitter, recriminatory" actors. The drama the thesps are enacting, meanwhile, also sports a play within a play, this one about two "a-functional" families lost in a shared dream along the coast of Maine.
Saved and Destroyed varies somewhat from Rattlestick's usual offerings. Typically, the company presents new works by emerging playwrights, presented under the tutelage of established scribes such as Terrence McNally and Edward Albee.
Saved had been scheduled for February 2000 but was delayed until May and then postponed again (the February slot was filled by The Messenger, by David Van Asselt). Now, the Kondoleon work will have its first preview on Nov. 15 and open Nov. 19 for a run through Dec. 3.
The wait may have been worth it, for now the Rattlestick is holding a whole Harry Kondoleon Festival. Kondoleon's other works will be read on Monday nights. Furthermore, the festival will conclude with readings of his one-act plays and a panel discussion.
Highlights of the festival include:
• Nov. 19: a "talk-back" with the cast and director of Saved.
• Nov. 28: A reading of Kondoleon's Cote D'Azur, followed by a discussion led by Village Voice critic Michael Feingold.
• Dec. 4: A reading of Self-Torture, featuring Kristine Nielson. Robyn Goodman and Stephen Soba will host, while John Guare will speak.
• Dec. 5: A reading of Diary of a Lost Boy, Peter Hedges' adaptation of Kondoleon's novel of the same title.
• Dec. 6: A reading of Play Yourself, hosted by Doug Hughes. Kathleen Chalfant, Martha Plimpton and Amy Sedaris are featured. Wendy Wasserstein will speak afterwards.
Tickets at $35. The Rattlestick is located at 224 Waverly Place. For more information, call (212) 206-1515.