Kevin Kline to Get Cookin' With Streep in Mother Courage; Walken Exits

News   Kevin Kline to Get Cookin' With Streep in Mother Courage; Walken Exits Kevin Kline will play the role of the Cook opposite Meryl Streep in the Aug. 8-Sept. 3 Central Park staging of Brecht's classic Mother Courage, Playbill.com has learned. He replaces the previously announced Christopher Walken.

Kevin Kline will join Meryl Streep in Mother Courgage.
Kevin Kline will join Meryl Streep in Mother Courgage. Photo by George Pimentel

Walken left the production "due to scheduling conflicts," according to the Public. Production dates will remain the same. Opening night is Aug. 21.

The Kline and Streep casting brings with it echoes of the Public Theater's 2001 revival of Chekhov's The Seagull, which featured the two actors. The two are also well known for their pairing in the film "Sophie's Choice."

Mother Courage will be the first of two Public assignments Kline will essay this year. In the fall, he's scheduled to tackle the title role in King Lear with James Lapine directing.

Kline's new castmates include Austin Pendleton, who plays the crucial role of the Chaplain; and, as Mother Courage's three unfortunate children, Frederick Weller (as Eilif), Geoffrey Arend (as Swiss Cheese) and Alexandria Wailes (as the mute Kattrin).

Jack Noseworthy, remembered from the Broadway musical Sweet Smell of Success, will portray various roles. Jenifer Lewis will play the long-suffering tart Yvette.

Also in the cast are Raul Aranas, Max Baker, Ato Essandoh, Colleen Fitzpatrick, Glenn Fleshler, Michael Izquierdo, Eugene Jones, George Kmeck, Paco Lozano, Michael Markham, Larry Marshall, Sean Phillips, Silvestre Rasuk, Brittany Underwood, Jade Wu and Waleed Zuaiter.

Tony Kushner (Angels in America, Caroline, or Change) has penned a new translation of the war drama. Kushner's Caroline, or Change collaborator Jeanine Tesori has created original music. George C. Wolfe will direct.

During the 1970s, Streep appeared in New York City stagings of The Cherry Orchard, Happy End and Taming of the Shrew. She is the winner of two Oscars.