Possible Broadway Transfer of Cruz's Anna in the Tropics Would Retain McCarter Cast

News   Possible Broadway Transfer of Cruz's Anna in the Tropics Would Retain McCarter Cast
Producer Roger Berlind remains committed to a New York future for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Anna in the Tropics, which will have its regional premiere at New Jersey's McCarter Theatre Sept. 9-Oct. 19.

As previously announced, Berlind and Daryl Roth — who produced the 2001 Broadway transfer of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Proof — are keeping a close eye on the McCarter staging with the idea of swiftly transferring the show to Manhattan. Berlind, who characterized Anna as a "beautiful play," confirmed to Playbill On-Line that Broadway is the goal and that the Manhattan production would likely retain the New Jersey cast, which is led by Jimmy Smits, Daphne Rubin Vega, Priscilla Lopez and John Ortiz. Playwright Cruz — a former McCarter artist-in-residence — has set his play in a Cuban-American cigar factory in 1929. The factory employs "lectors" to entertain and educate the factory workers, and a new lector who reads aloud from Anna Karenina becomes "a catalyst in the lives of his avid listeners, for whom Tolstoy, the tropics, and the American dream prove a volatile combination." Rounding out the cast are Vanessa Aspillaga and David Zayas.

Berlind has a busy season before him. In addition to Anna, he is producing the Broadway revival of Wonderful Town, the Kennedy Center stint of Stephen Sondheim's Bounce, and the Off-Broadway evening of one-acts, Beckett/Albee. Variety also reports that Berlind and Roth will likely bring the upcoming revival of Craig Lucas' Reckless — at the Second Stage Theatre in spring 2004 — to Broadway. That production stars Mary Louise Parker under the direction of Mark Brokaw.

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