Proof Positive: MTC's Sold-Out Hit to Open Oct. 24 at Walter Kerr

News   Proof Positive: MTC's Sold-Out Hit to Open Oct. 24 at Walter Kerr Although David Auburn's Proof gives its last gasp July 30 at Manhattan Theatre Club, it will return Oct. 10 for a first preview at Broadway's Walter Kerr Theatre.
Mary-Louise Parker in Proof.
Mary-Louise Parker in Proof. (Photo by Photo by Joan Marcus)

Although David Auburn's Proof gives its last gasp July 30 at Manhattan Theatre Club, it will return Oct. 10 for a first preview at Broadway's Walter Kerr Theatre.

The Off-Broadway cast, led by Mary-Louise Parker as the troubled daughter of a math genius, is expected to transfer with the commercial run, which opens Oct. 24. The company -- Larry Bryggman, Johanna Day and Ben Shenkman -- helped make Auburn's warm-hearted and mysterious world premiere a sold-out hit at MTC since opening May 23. Parker is confirmed for Broadway, the others have not officially been announced.

Proof's march to commercial and critical success has been rapid and steady, and a Broadway move was expected soon after the Off Broadway opening. The show, directed by Daniel Sullivan, opened at Manhattan Theatre Club's Stage I to overwhelmingly positive notices. It then extended until July 30.

Talk of Broadway culminated in Parker's decision to remain with the show instead of joining the Roundabout Theatre Company's scheduled fall production of O'Neill's Desire Under the Elms. The Roundabout subsequently scotched the O'Neill play. (Proof has proved pretty good at knocking out its competition. Sources have the drama beating out Neil Simon's The Dinner Party for the Kerr).

Proof will be one of two Manhattan Theatre Club productions -- the other being Charles Busch's The Tale of the Allergist's Wife -- to find a home on Broadway this autumn. MTC commercial producing partners are Roger Berlind, Carole Shorenstein Hays, Jujamcyn Theatres, Ostar Enterprises, Inc., Daryl Roth and Stuart Thompson. *

Act One of David Auburn's drama about the daughter of a math genius and his legacy, ends with a shocking sentence from star Parker, creating a palpable gasp from the audience and leaving them eager for Act Two.

Director Sullivan helmed Broadway's recent A Moon for the Misbegotten as well as Off-Broadway's Dinner With Friends.

Parker performed in New York stagings of Prelude to a Kiss, How I Learned To Drive and Communicating Doors and is known for her film acting in "Bullets Over Broadway," "Grand Canyon" and "Fried Green Tomatoes."

Bryggman, who plays Dr. John Dixon on TV's "As the World Turns," is seen frequently on New York stages. On Broadway, he's appeared in Prelude to a Kiss, Picnic, Richard III, The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel, and Off-Broadway he's acted in Bodies, Rest and Motion, New England, Dearly Beloved and Wolf Lullaby, among others.

Day appeared in New York's Vicks Boy, How I Learned to Drive, Oedipus (Blue Light Theatre Company) and more.

Shenkman's credits include Roundabout's The Deep Blue Sea, Baby Anger at Playwrights Horizons and Antony and Cleopatra at the Public Theater.

Playwright Auburn is a recent recipient of a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship. His plays include Skyscraper, (Greenwich House Theatre in 1997), Fifth Planet (New York Stage and Film), Miss You (HBO Comedy Arts Fest) and The Next Life (Juilliard School).

Designers for Proof are John Lee Beatty (set), Jess Goldstein (costume), Pat Collins (lighting), Jon Gromada (sound).

Tickets are $70 and can be purchased through Telecharge at (212) 239 6200, or online at www.ProofonBroadway.com.