The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis will be one of the first regional theaters to produce Lanford Wilson's award-winning Book of Days after the comedy-drama won the March 1999 American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award.
The Rep will stage Missouri native Wilson's work, about the people in Dublin, MO hiding their passions and secrets following the death of a local business leader, Sept. 8-Oct. 8, kicking off the 1998-99 season. Longtime Wilson collaborator Marshall Mason directs.
The play follows a local bookkeeper, Ruth, who has been cast as St. Joan in a local production of the Shaw play, and how she searches to uncover the truth of the local cheese tycoon's death. A cheese factory is the town's major industry.
The play was commissioned by Jeff Daniels' Purple Rose Theatre Company in Chelsea, MI and produced there in 1998. Retired Detroit Free Press critic Lawrence DeVine nominated the script for the ATCA award.
Also on the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis mainstage season in 1999 2000: * Much Ado About Nothing, the comedy by Shakespeare, directed by Edward Stern. Oct. 13-Nov. 12.
* Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods, the musical merging of different Grimm fairy tales, directed by Victoria Bussert. Dec. 1-31.
* Martin McDonagh's The Beauty Queen of Leenane, the Broadway, Dublin and London hit about a grim, dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship. Jan. 5-Feb. 4, 2000.
* Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Edward Albee's searing portrait of marital rancor and illusion, directed by Rep artistic director Steven Woolf. Feb. 9-March 10, 2000.
* A production to be announced. March 15-April 14, 2000.
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-- By Kenneth Jones