Kenneth Lonergan's latest, The Waverly Gallery, will open it door at the Promenade Theatre, off-Broadway. Previews will begin March 3, 2000 with an opening still to be announced. According to a source close to the production, Eileen Heckart will star, with Scott Ellis directing. Anita Waxman, Elizabeth Williams and Randall Wreghitt produce.
The Waverly Gallery premiered this past summer at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. In the play, aged owner Green (Heckart) fights to hold on to her gallery, even as Alzheimer's disease takes possession of her mind. Also in the WTF cast were Maureen Anderman, Anthony Arkin (Power Plays), Mark Blum (Lost in Yonkers), Josh Hamilton (As Bees in Honey Drown) and Stephen Mendillo.
Late in the Williamstown run, Joanne Woodward substituted for an ailing Heckart. Reportedly, Woodward filled in during the final four shows, carrying out her duties script in hand.
Heckart won an Oscar for her turn in "Butterflies Are Free". More recent credits include Terrence McNally and Jon Robin Baitz's House at the Bay Street Theatre.
Scott Ellis's many credits include the currently running Broadway revival of The Rainmaker. Lonergan's biggest success to date was This Is Our Youth, which opened Off-Broadway to great acclaim under the aegis of The New Group, and then remained in limbo for over a season while it waited to reopen in a commercial, off-Broadway house. Lonergan also contributed to the screenplay of the film, "Analyze This."
-- By Robert Simonson