Friedrich Schiller's Mary Stuart gets the royal treatment at San Francisco's American Conservatory Theatre. Previews begin Mar. 26 with an official opening night slated for April 1. The play runs through April 26.
Mary Stuart, which holds the distinction of being the first Schiller play to be performed at ACT, portrays the embattled Queen Elizabeth I as she struggles to defend her Protestant throne against the machinations of her conniving cousin.
The play was revived last season at London's Royal National Theatre featuring Isabelle Huppert and Anna Massey.
The translation that ACT is using is by Village Voice theatre critic Michael Feingold. The ACT production is directed by Carey Perloff (ACT's artistic director) and stars Caroline Lagerfelt (Broadway's The Real Thing and Moonlight, TV's "Nash Bridges") and Susan Gibney (Off-Broadway's Fallen Angel and TV's "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" and "Star Trek: The Next Generation").
Also in the cast of Mary Stuart are Marco Barricelli, Johnny Moreno, William Paterson, Scott Wentworth, Bryan Close, James Carpenter, Tommy A. Gomez, Warren David Keith, Penelope Kreitzer, Luis Oropeza and Emilie Talbot. In other news, ACT has announced it 1998-99 season.
Tom Stoppard's drama of ill-fated love, Indian Ink, a 1995 hit in London, will have its North American premiere next season at the theatre. The drama, which opens Feb. 24, 1999, will be directed by Carey Perloff and will mark the return to ACT of Jean Stapleton in the supporting role of the poet-heroine's sister (played by Margaret Tyzack in London). The role of the poet, played by Felicity Kendal in London, will be played at ACT by Wendy Makkena in her company debut.
First up on the theatre's subscription series is Fool Moon, with contemporary clowns Bill Irwin and David Shiner reprising their Broadway roles. Fool Moon opens Sept. 9.
Other plays in the ACT season lineup include:
Juno and the Paycock, directed by Giles Havergal and featuring Charles Dean and Geoff Hoyle (who were seen in Havergal's staging at the theatre last season of Travels with My Aunt).
Hecuba, an encore of the 1995 ACT hit production of the Euripides tragedy, starring Olympia Dukakis. (This will come on the heels of performances of the play in summer 1998 at the Williamstown Theatre Festival and the Athens Festival in Greece.)
Long Day's Journey into Night, starring Marco Barricelli and Kathleen Widdoes (who starred in last season's Rose Tattoo).
Tartuffe, directed by Charles Randolph-Wright (ACT's Insurrection: Holding History) and featuring Steven Anthony Jones and Shona Tucker.
In addition, there will be a holiday revival of A Christmas Carol.
For more information, call (415) 749-2228.
-- By Rebecca Paller