Jessica Hecht and Matthew Arkin Play Talley's Folly at Bay Street

News   Jessica Hecht and Matthew Arkin Play Talley's Folly at Bay Street Jessica Hecht and Matthew Arkin will star in Lanford Wilson's famous two-hander, Talley's Folly, which will get a new production at the Bay Street Theatre of Sag Harbor, Long Island, this summer.

Jessica Hecht and Matthew Arkin will star in Lanford Wilson's famous two-hander, Talley's Folly, which will get a new production at the Bay Street Theatre of Sag Harbor, Long Island, this summer.

Hecht is favorite with the New York theatre critics. She has acted in Lobster Alice, Stop Kiss, The Last Night of Ballyhoo and Plunge. She was directed in the latter two by Ron Lagomarsino, who will pilot Folly.

Arkin is the son of thesp Alan Arkin and brother of Adam Arkin. He is perhaps best known for his work on the short-lived series "100 Centre Street."

The Bay Street staging will precede a planned (unrelated) mounting at New York City's Signature Theatre Company, which is dedicating its 2002-03 season to the work of Wilson. The show will run May 21 to June 9.

* Twiggy and Patricia Kalember will play the two wives (one dead, one alive — for now) of Daniel Gerroll in a new production of Noel Coward's enduring comedy, Blithe Spirit, at the Bay Street Theatre of Sag Harbor, Long Island.

Gerroll, a Bay Street favorite, will also direct the show, which runs July 16-Aug. 4. Filling the fourth major role of the flighty old medium, Madame Arcati, is Dana Ivey. Gerroll's character, a English novelist, invites the medium to his country house to conjure as a way of gathering material for his new book. However, the Madame's visit ends up raising the spirit of the writer's late first wife, the beautiful and tempestuous Elvira — much to the consternation of the more sensible woman who took her place by Gerroll's side.

Gerroll and Kalember are husband and wife in real life. Both appeared in the thriller Accomplice (under Gerroll's direction) at the Bay Street last year. Gerroll's many Broadway and Off-Broadway credits include the recent An Experiment with an Air Pump and the upcoming House and Garden, both at Manhattan Theatre Club. Kalember was seen Off-Broadway in Arthur Kopit's Y2K.

Veteran Ivey is perhaps best remembered from her turns in two Alfred Uhry plays, Driving Miss Daisy and The Last Night of Ballyhoo. This season, she was seen in Major Barbara at the Roundabout Theatre Company.

Twiggy's stage appearances are few but typically memorable. She is still well recalled for the Broadway musical My One and Only, in which she danced and sang opposite Tommy Tune. Most recently came If Love Were All, another Coward piece (a revue-style show about Coward and actress Gertrude Lawrence) which first played Bay Street and then Off Broadway. A cast album exists. She first made news as one of the top fashion models of the '60s.

Otherwise, the Bay Street line-up features one premiere and two other classic texts. The premiere is The West End Horror: A New Sherlock Holmes Mystery, a work by Anthony Dodge and Marcia Milgrom Dodge, taken from the Nicholas Meyer novel. It will play June 18-July 7. The distaff Dodge will direct.

Horror sends the famous sleuth to discover the murderer of a London drama critic and the case is rather a star-studded one. The client is George Bernard Shaw and the suspects include Gilbert and Sullivan, Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde. A cast of eight actors will handle 41 roles.

Marcia Milgrom Dodge directed Hair at Bay Street in 2001 and Fit to Print the year before. Anthony Dodge is remembered more for his acting work, primarily in the old Phoenix Theatre Company. No cast has been mentioned.

The Bay Street season will close with what has become the hot text of the moment, Our Town, directed by Jack Hofsiss. Both the Westport Theatre Company on Connecticut and the Roundabout Theatre Company of Manhattan are currently planning revivals of the Thornton Wilder work.

Ticket information can be obtained by calling the Bay Street box office at (631) 725-9500, or visiting www.baystreet.org.

—By Robert Simonson