Back in February 1999, Londoners got to see and hear Richard Dreyfuss and Marsha Mason reunite in Neil Simon's The Prisoner of Second Avenue. Though the show never came to New York as rumored, Jan. 19-23, Los Angeles residents can catch the two reading the play for L.A. Theatre Works at the Skirball Cultural Center.
Dreyfuss and Mason both won aclaim for the film of Simon's "The Goodbye Girl." Dreyfuss even took home an Oscar (Mason was nominated). Since then, he has been nominated for an Oscar for his work in "Mr. Holland's Opus," while appearing in films like "Jaws," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "Down and Out in Beverly Hills" and "What About Bob?." Mason was nominated for Academy Awards four times, for "Cinderella Liberty," "The Goodbye Girl," "Chapter Two" and "Only When I Laugh." Both she and Dreyfuss are founding members of the L.A. Theatre Works radio theatre company.
Also in the cast are Caroline Aaron, Lorin Dreyfuss and Joyce Van Patten (Labor Day off-Broadway).
Tony nominated in the 1971-72 season, The Prisoner of Second Avenue comically examines the longtime marriage of a New York advertising executive and his wife as they face life in their "modern" highrise, complete with broken plumbing, nasty neighbors, burglary and the two German flight attendants next door who never seem to stop partying.
Tickets are $35-$31 and available by calling the TheatreWorks box office at (310) 827-0889. Performances run at the Skirball Center at 2701 N. Sepulveda Boulevard. All "The Play's the Thing" theatre productions are recorded for future broadcast on Santa Monica College's KCRW 89.9 FM. Productions have won several awards including the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's Gold and Silver Awards, three Sony Awards, the Writer's Guild of America's Best Comedy Award and the 1999 Audie Award for Best Dramatic Production from the Audio Publishers Association.
-- By Christine Ehren