Portraits to Close Off-Broadway Oct. 5

News   Portraits to Close Off-Broadway Oct. 5
Portraits, the 9/11-themed by Jonathan Bell which opened at the Union Square Theatre on Sept. 21 after previews from Sept. 9, will end its run on Oct. 5. It will have run 15 previews and 16 performances.
Dana Reeve, Roberta Maxwell, Matte Osian in Portraits.
Dana Reeve, Roberta Maxwell, Matte Osian in Portraits. Photo by Joan Marcus

Portraits previously had a 2002 run at The Ridgefield Playhouse in Fairfield County, CT. The work, directed by Mark Pinter, is a series of seven personal tales, some inspired by real people and their responses to the 2001 terrorist attacks. The cast features Victor Slezak (Roses in December), Dana Reeve, Roberta Maxwell, Anjali Bhimani (Metamorphoses), Matte Osian, Christopher Coucill and Darrie Lawrence.

The play offers five monologues and a duologue, introduced by an artist character who presents the people as pictures in a gallery, with references to Picasso's "Guernica" painting. Bell culled stories from the internet or from newspapers and used them as starting points for his monologues. Among the portrait subjects:

  • Betty, a simple woman, alone in upstate New York, who needs to reach out and communicate to someone — anyone.
  • Daniel, an executive at the World Trade Center who is in the wrong place at the wrong time — and gets caught.
  • Arifa, a Muslim woman, and a proud, third-generation American. She is now fearful as an American and of Americans.
  • John, a registered nurse and an EMT from Orange County, NY, who headed to NYC to help in any way he could.
  • Ruth, the mother of a man who survived; and Nancy, the wife of a man who did not, because he was helping others get out. Nancy is resentful. The piece was originally titled 9/11 Portraits.

    For tickets, call (212) 307-4100.

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