ME's Ogunquit Playhouse Holds Will Rogers Follies, July 17-29

News   ME's Ogunquit Playhouse Holds Will Rogers Follies, July 17-29 Next up at the Ogunquit Playhouse of Maine will be The Will Rogers Follies, the Coleman-Comden-Green musical, running July 17-29.

Next up at the Ogunquit Playhouse of Maine will be The Will Rogers Follies, the Coleman-Comden-Green musical, running July 17-29.

Follies, which played Broadway's Palace Theatre a decade ago in a production starring Keith Carradine, tells the story, in vaudeville fashion, of entertainer Will Rogers.

Playing the title role will be Ken Johnson. Johnson was in the national tours of Big River and Gypsy. This is Johnson's fifth turn at playing Rogers.

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In other Ogunquit news, Judd Hirsch just can't get enough Art. The actor appeared in the Broadway production of the Yasmina Reza play and then toured the nation with it. Now Hirsch will direct the Tony-winning comedy, July 31-Aug. 12 at the playhouse. David Dukes, William Atherton and Jack Willis will star in the play, the story of an all-white painting and how one man's purchase of it irrevocably alters his relationship with his two best friends. Art was a hit in both London and New York, attracting plaudits and trios of well-known performers. The show debuted on Broadway with Victor Garber, Alfred Molina and Alan Alda.

Dukes is a seasoned stage actor, having appeared on Broadway in such works as M. Butterfly and Broken Glass. Atherton was one of the leading presences of the American stage in the late 60s and early 70s before turning to film. Beginning as a character lead in such movies as "Sugarland Express" and "The Day of the Locusts," he transformed into a comic villain in "Ghostbusters" and the "Die Hard" series. Willis -- who replaced Zane Lasky, who left the show due to illness -- appeared in the national tour of Art with Hirsch, as well as on Broadway in David Mamet's The Old Neighborhood.

Hirsch's many stage credits include I'm Not Rappaport and Conversations with My Father.

The Ogunquit, one of the last survivors of the New England "Straw Hat" summer stock circuit, was founded in 1933 by Walter and Maude Hardwig. It has been owned since 1995 by the Ogunquit Playhouse Foundation.

The remainder of the 2000 season runs as follows:

The Will Rogers Follies, the Coleman-Comden-Green musical, July 17-29
Art, July 31-Aug. 12
Grease!, Aug. 14-Sept. 3

The Playhouse is located in Ogunquit, ME. For further information, call (207) 646-2402.

--By Robert Simonson