Larry Keith, Simon Jones Find Home, at Theatre Row

News   Larry Keith, Simon Jones Find Home, at Theatre Row TACT/The Actors Company Theatre, the Manhattan troupe that distinguished itself with conceptual book-in-hand concert presentations of seldom-explored plays, reinvented itself Dec. 2.

The actor-driven Equity troupe began performances of Home, the first production of its new mandate to stage full productions in residence at Theatre Row. Opening is Dec. 7 at the 99-seat Beckett Theatre on West 42nd Street.

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Co-artistic directors Scott Alan Evans, Cynthia Harris and Simon Jones announced Aug. 24 that beginning this fall, TACT would present "two fully mounted productions at the Beckett Theatre at Theatre Row."

Two plays by British writers who came of age in the "angry young man" era were announced for 2006-07: Home and Edward Bond's The Sea.

David Storey's enigmatic Home (1970), previously presented by TACT as a reading in March 2005, will play to Dec. 23. The cast includes Cynthia Darlow, Cynthia Harris, Simon Jones, Larry Keith and Ron McClary. Evans directs. The design team for Home includes Mimi Lien (set), Mary Louise Geiger (lighting), David Toser (costume) and Daryl Bornstein (sound). Original music is by David Macdonald.

The company has left Florence Gould Hall, where they have been presenting their "Concert Performance" productions for the past four seasons. The membership, which includes 47 performers, wanted to stretch its muscles more, executive director Scott Alan Evans told Playbill.com, adding that its earlier full stagings of Noel Coward's Long Island Sound and The Triangle Factory Fire Project were greeted with enthusiasm by company members and its loyal audiences.

TACT's hundreds of subscribers will pepper the 22-performance showcase runs of plays at the Beckett Theatre in the Theatre Row complex on West 42nd Street. Subscribers are no longer locked into a one-weekend performance schedule. Top ticket price for TACT shows at the 99-seat Beckett will be $20. TACT will also continue its ticket outreach program to help those might not be able to afford theatre.

One of the goals of TACT from the beginning was to showcase the work of mid-career actors in productions that are not necessarily star-driven, and that continues. TACT draws from a pool of its own company of actors and also invites guest artists in.

The second main stage production, April 21-May 12, 2007, will be The Sea (1973) by Edward Bond. It's billed as "a thought-provoking and somewhat gothic comedy set in an English costal town in 1907."

TACT's studio at 900 Broadway will be utilized for the TACT Salon Series: six play readings to be presented throughout the season. TACT's Salon Series will include Kind Lady by Edward Chodorov, The Chinese Prime Minister by Enid Bagnol, Man & Boy by Terence Rattigan, and Rain by John Colton & Clemence Randolph based on a story by W. Somerset Maugham. The series will conclude in May with Dandy Dick by Arthur Wing Pinero.

"TACT celebrates language, the actor, and the spoken word," according to its mission. "Founded by professional actors in 1992, TACT is dedicated to presenting neglected or rarely performed plays of literary merit with a focus on creating theatre from its essence: the text and the actor's ability to bring it to life."

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The performance schedule for Home Monday at 7:30 PM; Wednesdays-Fridays at 7:30 PM; Saturdays at 2 and 8 PM; Sundays at 3 PM. Tickets are $20. For more information, visit www.ticketcentral.com or call (212) 279-4200.

For more information, call the TACT offices at (212) 645-8228 or visit www.tactnyc.org.

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