On the radio were bubblegum melodies -- sweet and innocent love songs, sung by wholesome crooners. On the tube were family shows like “Father Knows Best” and “Leave It To Beaver.” And on the big screen were Rock Hudson and Doris Day. It was the 1950s.
As we know now, things weren’t as perfect as they seemed. The "shameful" music called rock n’ roll was on the rise. The submissive role of women was "setting the table" for the rise of feminism. And the virile leading man women swooned over in "Pillow Talk", was in fact, acting. This is where playwright Richard Day sets his new comedy Straight Jacket that opens at Off-Broadway’s Playhouse 91 June 18. Previews began May 30, according to production spokespersons at Cromarty & Co.
Straight-Jacket is about a man who marries a studio owner’s secretary to hide his sexual identity. He puts on this pretense to keep his starring role in the upcoming new movie, “Ben Hur.” Day also directs the play, with musical score by Steve Edwards, sets by Ray Recht, costumes by Gail Brassard, lights by F. Mitchell Dana, and sound by Peter Fitzgerald.
The cast includes Stevie Ray Dallimore (The Beauty Queen of Leenane), Adam Greer (OB’s What You Get and What You Expect), Jackie Hoffman (Obie award-winning One Woman Shoe), Mal Z. Lawrence (Catskills on Broadway, the 1997 revival of Candide), John Littlefield (in his Off Broadway debut), Ron Mathews (Bus Stop), and Carrie Preston (The Tempest).
Tickets for Straight can be purchased at Playhouse 91, 316 East 91 St. (Between 1st and 2nd Ave.) or by calling Ticketmaster at (212) 307-4100. Student rush tickets also available. -- by Ernio Hernandez