Fresh off last season's well-received Kingdom Of Earth, a reworking of Tennessee Williams' Seven Descents Of Myrtle, the Off-Broadway theatre company Drama Dept. scored with their revival of June Moon, staged in January at the Ohio Theatre in New York's Greenwich Village. The 1929 play with music, with a book by George S. Kaufman and Ring Lardner, and music by Lardner, won the 1997 Lucille Lortel Award for Best Revival.
The show began previews Jan. 7, opened the following night, and was extended through Jan. 26. Now comes word June Moon will likely return for a commercial Off-Broadway run sometime in the fall. Not only that, as reported in Theatrical Index, the show will first play at NJ's McCarter Theatre, Sept. 19-Oct. 5. As he did this winter, Mark Nelson (star of Off-Broadway's Picasso At The Lapin Agile) will direct.
Production spokesperson Patrick Paris (of Boneau/Bryan-Brown) told Playbill On-Line most of the original cast would return, though he was not yet able to announce specific names. Starring in the piece at the Ohio Theatre were Cynthia Nixon (Kingdom, Broadway's Hurlyburly and Angels In America), Robert Joy (The Nerd), Albert Macklin, Becky Ann Baker, Amy Hohn, Robert Ari, Peter Jacobson and Stacy Highsmith. A New York venue and dates for the revival's return have not yet been announced.
The original June Moon opened just prior to the 1929 stock market crash and tells of a naive, Tin Pan Alley songwriter who falls for a big city woman.
According to the "Burns Mantle Best Plays Of 1929-1930," June Moon was based on Lardner's short story, "Some Like `Em Cold." The volume excerpted the play as one of the season's best, calling it "one of the major triumphs of the theatre season." Drama Dept. was formed in 1994 to "create, develop and produce new and neglected plays, as well as to work with educational institutions to help foster new artists and audiences." Company members include Sarah Jessica Parker, Peter Gallagher, Nicky Silver and John Cameron Mitchell.
--By David Lefkowitz