Back in June, rumors sprang up that the Roundabout Theatre Company would mount a Broadway revival of Our Town, with Mark Brokaw at the helm. Little has been heard about that project since, but New York will see a staging of Thornton Wilder's masterpiece this season, when the Off Off-Broadway company Transport Group offers its Our Town Feb. 9-March 3 at the Connelly Theatre on East 4th Street.
Arguably the most moving play in the American canon, Our Town traces the relationship between Emily Webb and George Gibbs, who grow up together, fall in love, marry and then lose one another in the sad and joyous life cycles of turn-of-the-century America. Wilder is also the author of The Skin of Our Teeth and The Matchmaker. Our Town, unconventional in its use of a Stage Manager who narrates this look at Grover's Corners, New Hampshire, won the Pulitzer Prize when it opened on Broadway in 1938.
The Transport Group staging, which officially opens Feb. 16, will be unconventional in one aspect, in that it will have Mary Mitchell-Campbell's musical underscoring and "original soundscape" to accompany the action, according to spokespersons at the Springer/Chicoine press office. Also unusual for Our Town mountings is the casting: teenaged George and Emily will be played by veteran actors Tom Ligon and Barbara Andres (Rex, Cabaret, the Goodspeed's Houdini). Also in the cast are John Cariani, Jeff Edgerton, Robyn Hussa, Mark Lebetter, Joanna Lee, Richard Martin, Matt Nowosielski, Carl Palmer, Monica Russel, Julie Siefkes, James Weber, John Wellman, Chuck Wilson, Matt Yeager and Van Zeiler.
Designing the production, which is directed by Jack Cummings III, are R. Lee Kennedy (lighting), Kathryn Rohe (costumes) and John Story (set).
For information on Our Town at the Connelly Theatre call (212) 206-1515. By David Lefkowitz
and Christine Ehren