Frank Galati's theatrical adaptation of John Steinbeck's novel The Grapes of Wrath kicks off the L.A. Theatre Works reading and radio series with performances Oct. 16-20 at the Skirball Center. Oscar and Emmy nominee James Cromwell ("Sum of All Fears," "Babe," "L.A. Confidential") stars with Shirley Knight, Emily Bergl and Francis Guinan.
These readings of Grapes of Wrath are a part of the California Council for the Humanities' effort to encourage the entire state to read the classic John Steinbeck novel for a plethora of events to be held in October. L.A. Theatre Works will also donate copies of the recording to all 906 public secondary schools in California.
Completing the large cast of migrant workers and dustbowlers that populate Steinbeck's Depression Era novel about the struggles of the Joad family, are Gloria Dorson, Trista Delamere, Eve Gordon, Rod McLachlan, Bob Pescovitz, Steve Ramsey, Andy Taylor, Todd Warner and Jerry Hardin. There will also be live fiddle and guitar music by Joel Rafael and his band.
Tickets range from $10-$42. All performances are at the Skirball Cultural Center at 2701 North Sepulveda Boulevard. For reservations and information, call (310) 827-0889.
All Theatre Works theatre productions are recorded for future broadcast on public radio KPCC (Saturday nights on 89.3 FM), on XM Satellite Radio and are sold on the L.A. Theatre Works homepage at http://www.latw.org. In the past 14 years, productions have won several awards including the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's Gold and Silver Awards, three Sony Awards, the Writer's Guild of America's Best Comedy Award and the 1999 Audie Award for Best Dramatic Production from the Audio Publishers Association. Their recording of The Prisoner of Second Avenue, featuring Richard Dreyfuss and Marsha Mason, was recently nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Comedy Album. – By Christine Ehren