Nobel Prize-Winner Pinter's Celebration and The Room Open in NYC

News   Nobel Prize-Winner Pinter's Celebration and The Room Open in NYC
 
Atlantic Theater Company's double bill of Harold Pinter's Celebration and The Room — Off-Broadway's first brush with the British playwright since he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature — opens Dec. 5 in Manhattan.
Mary Beth Peil and Earle Hyman in The Room.
Mary Beth Peil and Earle Hyman in The Room. Photo by Monique Carboni

Previews began Nov. 16. The evening of two works features Pinter's first play (The Room) and his most recent (Celebration). The Room is set in a shabby one-room flat in London, while Celebration takes place in a trendy restaurant where one of three couples is celebrating a wedding anniversary. Both plays, according to a production statement, "resonate with the human desperation to find safe haven in a threatening world." The works were written 40 years apart.

Pinter was awarded the Nobel Prize Oct. 13. Atlantic artistic director Neil Pepe directs the Off-Broadway double bill.

Celebration (presented first on the bill) includes Blumberg, Pittu and Betsy Aidem, Patrick Breen, Brennan Brown, Phillip Goodwin, Carolyn McCormick, Ryan and Christa Scott-Reed.

The Room features Atlantic Company members Kate Blumberg, Mary Beth Peil, David Pittu as well as Earle Hyman, Peter Maloney and Thomas Jay Ryan.

Scenic design is by Walt Spangler, lighting design by David Weiner, costume design by Ilona Somogyi and sound design by Obadiah Eaves. Casting is by Bernard Telsey Casting. Production stage management is by Darcy Stephens. The limited run continues to Jan. 8, 2006.

The Caretaker in 1959 is considered to be Pinter's breakthrough play. "He was responsible for the creation of a spare language of verbal evasion and menace, both unspoken and vividly expressed," according to ATC notes. The Swedish Academy, which awards the Nobels, noted, "Pinter restored theatre to its basic elements — an enclosed space and unpredictable dialogue where people are at the mercy of each other and pretense crumbles."

In honor of its 20th Anniversary Season, Atlantic has a "Play for the Price of a Movie" offer: a $10 theatre ticket in an effort to build young audiences and attract first time theatregoers. At every performance, 15 seats will be available to the general public. Tickets may be reserved in advance by calling (212) 691-5919 ext. 126 or may be purchased at the box office (336 West 20th Street) two hours prior to curtain.

Celebration and The Room play Tuesday through Friday at 8, Saturday at 2 & 8 and Sundays at 3 PM. All tickets are $50 and are available by calling Telecharge at (212) 239-6200 (Telecharge.com).

Atlantic Theater Company is located in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood at 336 West 20th St (between Eighth & Ninth Avenues). For membership information, wheelchair seating, and/or group sales call (212) 691-5919, ext. 102.

For more information, visit www.atlantictheater.org.

From Left: Kate Blumberg, Carolyn McCormick, Thomas Jay Ryan, Phillip Goodwin, Betsy Aidem, Patrick Breen, Brennan Brown and Christa Scott-Reed in <i>Celebration</i>.
From Left: Kate Blumberg, Carolyn McCormick, Thomas Jay Ryan, Phillip Goodwin, Betsy Aidem, Patrick Breen, Brennan Brown and Christa Scott-Reed in Celebration. Photo by Monique Carboni
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