The L.A. Theatre Works recreation of the Pacific Resident Theatre's Drama Logue-winning production of J.M. Synge's The Playboy of the Western World will close Nov. 14. The production, with original stars Orson Bean and Alley Mills, began performances Nov. 10.
When a young man wanders into a country inn in rural Ireland, telling the story of his murder of his cruel father, the people become enamored of him instead of afraid, captured by the mystery he has brought into their isolated, lonely lives. Synge is best known for Playboy, which sparked riots at the Abbey Theatre when it debuted in 1907, and Riders to the Sea.
Bean began his career on television in the fifties on "Playhouse 90" and "The Twilight Zone" and has continued on into the nineties with six seasons on "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman." With over 20 years in Broadway theatre, Bean has appeared in film (most recently, "Being John Malkovich") and has published three books. Mills is best known as Norma Arnold, Kevin's mom on "The Wonder Years." Other film and television credits include "Diary of a Mad Housewife," "The Atlanta Child Murders" and a two hour "Dr. Quinn" in which she played Jane Seymour's sister.
Also in the cast of the show, which won six Drama Logue Awards during its full production, are Robert Evan Collins, Stuart W. Howard, Dennis Madden, Paula Malcolmson, Seth Margolies, Carolyn Palmer and Sarah Tracy. Marilyn Fox directs.
Tickets are $35-$31 and available by calling the TheatreWorks box office at (310) 827-0889. Performances run at the Skirball Center at 2701 N. Sepulveda Boulevard. Up next at L.A. Theatre Works will be a production of The Rose Tattoo with Anthony LaPaglia and Mercedes Ruehl. Tattoo begins performances Dec. 8. Tickets go on sale Nov. 16.
All "The Play's the Thing" theatre productions are recorded for future broadcast on Santa Monica College's KCRW 89.9 FM. 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.
-- By Christine Ehren