Jason Moore Directs Peter Morris' Guardians, with Moennig and Pace, Off-Broadway

News   Jason Moore Directs Peter Morris' Guardians, with Moennig and Pace, Off-Broadway Avenue Q director Jason Moore returns to Off-Broadway with his staging of Peter Morris' Guardians, starring Katherine Moennig and Lee Pace, opening at The Culture Project April 11.
Jason Moore
Jason Moore Photo by Aubrey Reuben

The New York premiere of the Edinburgh Fringe First Award winner at The Culture Project's 45 Bleecker space began April 1 for a limited run through May 25.

As the downtown space's previous tenant, Guantánamo: Honor Bound to Defend Freedom, Guardians pulls source material from the headlines of the Iraq War. The work focuses on the London paper The Daily Mirror which, in the wake of the infamous photos of United States army abuse at the Abu Ghraib prison, published shots of English soldiers engaging in similar atrocities. Soon after their publication, however, the British public learned that the Daily Mirror pictures were forged.

"I wanted to treat these scandals in a dramatic context," explained American playwright Morris, who works mostly in London. "Their obvious direct similarities reflect the larger issues they raise, primarily that of America: its role in the world, the low esteem in which the educated British public holds it and whether or not its actions are justifiable. I don't intend to answer these questions, merely to pose them."

Showtime television network stars Moennig (of "The L Word") — who makes her Off Broadway debut — and Pace (Golden Globe nominee for the cable movie "Soldier's Girl") star in the work. Pace has previously been seen Off-Broadway in Small Tragedy, The Fourth Sister and The Credeaux Canvas as well as on TV's "Wonderfalls."

Director Moore's credits include the Tony Award-winning musical Avenue Q, the recent Broadway staging of Steel Magnolias, Off Broadway's The Crumple Zone as well as TV gigs on "Everwood," "One Tree Hill" and "Dawson's Creek." In May 2004, Storyline Entertainment confirmed the director was signed for an ABC television musical "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" featuring a score by Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz. The design team will include Richard Hoover (set), Garin Marschall (lighting) and Michelle Phillips (costume).

Tickets to Guardians at The Culture Project, 45 Bleecker Street (at Lafayette), can be purchased at (212) 307-4100. For more information on The Culture Project, visit www.45bleecker.com.