Hayley Mills, the onetime child star who made such Disney film hits as "Pollyanna" and "The Parent Trap," will make her New York theatre debut in December in a double-bill of one-acts by Noel Coward under the umbrella title, Noel Coward's Suite in Two Keys.
An Off-Broadway staging with Mills and co-star Keir Dullea is planned, according to producers Miranda d'Ancona and Doris Kaufman (Mirage Theatre Company) and Todd Alan Price (StageWrite Entertainment), but a theatre is still being sought.
Tony Award-winning director Vivian Matalon (Morning's at Seven) will direct Shadows of the Evening, a play he directed in London in 1965 when the piece was part of a longer evening called Noel Coward's Suite in Three Keys. Matalon directed Coward himself in the work.
This will be the American premiere of Shadows of the Evening, which is paired with A Song at Twilight (to be directed by Miranda d'Ancona).
Dullea is the American regional, Broadway and film actor seen in Butterflies Are Free, PS Your Cat is Dead!, ANTA's Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and "2001: A Space Odyssey." Mills traveled the U.S. in recent revival tour of The King and I. *
In London in 1965, Matalon directed all three plays, a trio that included a full-length version of A Song at Twilight, played in rep with the shorter Shadows of the Evening and Come Into the Garden Maud. The plays represented late Coward writing about older people. Lilli Palmer and Irene Worth also starred.
On Broadway in 1974, Matalon directed a pairing of A Song at Twilight and Come Into the Garden Maud, starring Jessica Tandy, Hume Cronyn and Anne Baxter. That also played under the title, Noel Coward's Suite in Two Keys, although that version is not intended for Off-Broadway this year.
British-born Matalon won the Tony Award for directing the 1980 revival of Paul Osborn's Morning's at Seven, and was nominated for his direction of The Tap Dance Kid.
-- By Kenneth Jones