Off-Broadway Company Pairs Ibsen's Eyolf with New Work, May 17-June 22

News   Off-Broadway Company Pairs Ibsen's Eyolf with New Work, May 17-June 22 Epic Theatre Center, an Off-Broadway company, will present something old and something new May 17-June 22 when it offers, in repertory, new productions of Ibsen's Little Eyolf and contemporary playwright Judith Thompson's Habitat.

The two shows will be staged at Theatre 3 (311 W. 43rd Street). Ron Russell will direct the Ibsen, Julia Gibson the Thompson. The casts for both productions are: Melissa Friedman, Teri Lamm, Michael Reid, Craig Rovere, Rebecca Schull and James Wallert. Ibsen wrote Eyolf during one of his most creative periods, at a time when he was creating The Master Builder and John Gabriel Borkman. The drama tells of a married couple, Alfred and Rita, whose fragile union is tested further by the death of their young son in an accident. Ibsen uses the incident to examine the nature of love and marriage, why we marry and what keeps us apart. Shaw and William Archer considered the work among Ibsen's greatest achievements. Still, since the famed Russian actress Nazimova performed in the New York premiere of the play, the play has been attempted only seldomly in the U.S. The Epic adaptation of the work has it cut down to 90 minutes.

Habitat, meanwhile, concerns a mother and daughter who live on an idyllic community—idyllic, that is, until a group home for troubled adolescents is opened on their street.

Tickets are $35 for one show; $40 for both. For tickets and more information go to Smart Tix: www.smarttix.com or (212) 206-1515.