Richard Crawford Steps into Soho Rep [sic], Dec. 26

News   Richard Crawford Steps into Soho Rep [sic], Dec. 26 [sic], the new play by hitherto unknown author Melissa James Gibson, which has turned into one of the biggest hits in the 26-year history of the small Off-Off-Broadway outfit Soho Rep, will get a new actor beginning Dec. 16. Dominic Fumusa, who has played frustrated musician Theo since the play began on Nov. 14, will depart to take a role in Stephen Belber's Tape at Naked Angels. Replacing him is Richard Crawford.
Dominic Fumusa, Cristina Kirk and James Urbaniak in [sic].
Dominic Fumusa, Cristina Kirk and James Urbaniak in [sic]. (Photo by Photo by Paula Cort)

[sic], the new play by hitherto unknown author Melissa James Gibson, which has turned into one of the biggest hits in the 26-year history of the small Off-Off-Broadway outfit Soho Rep, will get a new actor beginning Dec. 16. Dominic Fumusa, who has played frustrated musician Theo since the play began on Nov. 14, will depart to take a role in Stephen Belber's Tape at Naked Angels. Replacing him is Richard Crawford.

Remaining with the show are James Urbaniak, Christina Kirk, Jennifer Morris and Trevor Williams.

Crawford is known at Soho Rep. He has acted there in Signals of Distress, Archipelago and works by The Flying Machine, a company he formed.

In [sic], Babette, Theo and Frank live in neighboring shoebox-size apartments. The are quintessentially jaded urbanites of a certain anxious age (roughly 30) who look forward to great careers as a novelist, musician and auctioneer, respectively, but are beginning to doubt whether they'll succeed at anything. To soothe their bruised egos and endangered hopes, they frequently wander into the hall and exchange witticisms, comments and observations about their mutual (but never seen) best friend, and their upstairs and downstairs neighbors. What emerges is a fragmented, slightly absurdist portrait of the anxiety every would-be artist feels after four or five stagnating years living in New York.

* After the New York Times' Bruce Weber called the drama "the most alluring play of the season so far" upon its Nov. 21 opening, the production extended to Dec. 22, and then to Jan. 18. Sources say ticket demand is high for the Gibson work.

The extension will operated under an Off-Broadway contract, causing the tickets prices to jump from $15 to $30. For information on the new block of tickets, which are now available, call (212) 206-1515.

The notice also attracted the attention of commercial producers, who are trekking down to Soho Rep's small Walker Street space. The success of the show, which is directed by Daniel Aukin, comes at an opportune moment: Soho Rep, situated only blocks from the site of the World Trade Center, was direly affected by the events of Sept. 11.

Obie winner and sometime film star James Urbaniak stars in [sic], which began previews Nov. 14. Urbaniak toiled for years in Off-Off Broadway haunts like Nada and HERE, before winning an Obie Award for The Universe by Richard Foreman. Soon after that, he began popping up in films such as Hal Hartley's "Henry Fool" and Woody Allen's "Sweet and Lowdown." He was a co-founder of the Arden Party theatre company, a troupe which also produced director Karin Coonrod and actor-director Randall Curtis Rand.

Kirk made an impression as the star of Emma Griffin's recent revival of Kaufman and Ferber's Stage Door.

[sic] was developed in Soho Rep's 2000-01 playwrights-directors lab and given a reading this past spring. "[sic]" is an editorial term meaning, roughly, "intentionally so written." It is typically placed after a misspelled or archaically spelled word to indicate that the spelling is that of the original writer or speaker, not the publication or editor which has reprinted the quote.

*

Soho Rep's spring show, meanwhile, is Attempts on Her Life, the latest by British scribe Martin Crimp. Is she a terrorist? Is she a porn star? A new car model? The show, which bowed at the Royal Court in London, tries to answer these questions. New York sightings of Crimp's work include The Treatment at the Public Theater and a new adaptation of The Misanthrope at CSC.

Attempts will run in April 2002, with specific dates and a director to be announced.

—By Robert Simonson