Even before its launch, Classic Stage Company's production was popular enough to merit a one-week extension to March 8. Official opening is Feb. 12.
The cast also includes Maggie Gyllenhaal as Yelena, Peter Sarsgaard as Astrov, Mamie Gummer as Sonya, Louis Zorich as Waffles, George Morfogen as Srebryakov, Delphi Harrington as Maria and Cyrilla Baer as Marina.
Sarsgaard (of the films "Shattered Glass," "Boys Don't Cry," "Kinsey") jumped from his late 2008 Chekhov gig (he was Trigorin in Broadway's The Seagull) into rehearsals for Vanya, about an aging professor (Morfogen) and his young wife (Gyllenhaael) returning to his old estate, arousing tensions within Vanya and his niece (Gummer).
Gyllenhaal is known for the films "The Dark Knight," "Sherrybaby," "Secretary," "Donnie Darko" and more.
O'Hare, a veteran of Broadway's Take Me Out and Sweet Charity, who last performed at CSC in Yasmina Reza's A Spanish Play, stars as "Vanya, the quintessential superfluous man, who wakes up one morning to discover he has wasted his life in the service of others, in Chekhov's tragicomic masterpiece of dashed dreams, thwarted love and eternal longing," according to CSC. The play was first performed at the Moscow Art Theater in 1899, directed by Constantine Stanislavsky.
Actor-director Pendleton has directed Uncle Vanya twice before: at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in 1972 and at the Hartman Theatre in Stamford in 1980; both times featuring sets by Santo Loquasto. The CSC staging is completely new, however. Pendleton has also played Vanya several times: at the Whole Theatre Co. (directed by Olympia Dukakis); at the Williamstown Theatre Festival (directed by Jeff Blechner); at CSC (directed by Maria Irene Fornes); and for Steppenwolf Theatre Company (directed by Sheldon Pantinkin). Classic Stage Company is located at 136 East 13th Street.
Uncle Vanya plays Tuesday through Fridays at 8 PM, Saturdays at 2 PM and 8 PM and Sundays at 2 PM. Tickets are $70 and $75. For tickets and more information, visit www.classicstage.org, call (866) 811-4111 or (212) 352-3101, or visit the CSC box office.