Long Wharf Season to Feature O'Neill, Beckett, Fugard, Hemingway and Vogel Premiere

News   Long Wharf Season to Feature O'Neill, Beckett, Fugard, Hemingway and Vogel Premiere The 2008-2009 season at Long Wharf will commence with a pairing of one-acts by O'Neill and Beckett, featuring two-time Tony Award -winning actor Brian Dennehy.

Eugene O'Neill's Hughie and Samuel Beckett's Krapp's Last Tape will be co-presented on Stage II at the beginning of the Long Wharf season.

The two one-acts feature Dennehy, a Tony winner for Death of a Salesman and Long Day's Journey Into Night, as Erie Smith (Hughie) and in the title role of Krapp's Last Tape.

In Hughie, "Erie Smith, a small-time gambler, wanders home to a seedy New York hotel fresh from a grief-stricken bout of drinking: Hughie, night clerk and once-captive audience for Erie's tall tales, has died. Will Erie find in Hughie’s replacement the affirmation and friendship he craves?"

Beckett's Krapp's Last Tape finds its central character in the twilight of his life, "alone now except for his memories - [he] relives the moment years before when he glimpsed a chance at happiness. Samuel Beckett's haunting monologue meditates on time's passage, loves lost, and the rituals that both comfort and imprison us."

Long Wharf's main stage will premiere Pulitzer Prize winner Paula Vogel's A Civil War Christmas. Long Wharf artistic director Gordon Edelstein described the new work, which incorporates numerous period songs, as "Paula's biggest play, the first play she has attempted that is so large in scope. She is dealing with themes central to American spirit and American history – the issues of race, gender, freedom, inclusiveness and forgiveness." Press notes for A Civil War Christmas state, "It's 1864, and Washington, DC, settles down to the coldest Christmas Eve in years - in the White House, where President and Mrs. Lincoln plot their gift-giving; on the banks of the Potomac, where a young rebel challenges a Union blacksmith's mercy; and in the alleys downtown, where an escaped slave loses her daughter just before finding freedom."

Also set for the Long Wharf season will be Victory, the latest work by South African playwright Athol Fugard. "Vicky promises Freddie that robbing her old teacher Lionel's house will go off without a hitch, but when they are caught, the ensuing confrontation ends in tragedy," press notes explain. "The pair's standoff with Lionel - who once employed Vicky's mother as his housekeeper - pits poverty against privilege, youth against experience and Vicky and Lionel's accounts of the past against each other."

The final confirmed production will be Ernest Hemingway's Pulitzer Prize-winning work, The Old Man and the Sea, in a new adaptation by Long Wharf associate artistic director Eric Tang.

"In this vividly theatrical adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's timeless tale, an old fisherman's 85-day struggle to catch a fish culminates with a battle to land the greatest catch of his life – a powerful marlin. While dueling with the marlin, the old man learns to respect and love his adversary, admiring its beauty and greatness. Despite this, he has to kill it. As the old man struggles in his epic duel with the fish, we learn a lesson about life and sacrifice," production notes state.

Two additional productions, yet to be announced, will complete the Long Wharf season. Casting, creative duties and production dates will be announced shortly.

For more information visit longwharf.org.

The Long Wharf Theatre is located at 222 Sargent Drive in New Haven, CT.