Rita Moreno Master Class, Zimmerman's Notebooks Top Next Berkeley Rep Season

News   Rita Moreno Master Class, Zimmerman's Notebooks Top Next Berkeley Rep Season Rita Moreno will headline in Terrence McNally's Master Class as part of Berkeley Repertory Theatre's lineup for the 2003-2004 season. Celebrating their 36th anniversary, the California company will also present Mary Zimmerman's Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci and Dael Orlandersmith's Yellowman.

Starting off the season, Tony Award-winning director Zimmerman (Metamorphoses) will helm her work, Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci, inspired by the thoughts and ideas of the Renaissance artist. The work which premiered at Chicago's Goodman Theatre will be presented Off-Broadway this summer at Second Stage Theatre.

A Pulitzer Prize finalist, Orlandersmith's Yellowman will see the Berkeley stage next. Directed by Les Waters, the solo work about racism delves into the topics of how skin color affects perspectives within the black community.

The third production of the season will be announced at a later date. Soon after, Waters returns to direct Charles Ludlam's The Mystery of Irma Vep. The classic spoof comedy written by the late Ridiculous Theatrical Company writer-director performer will finally turn up at Berkeley Rep.

Concluding the mainstage season, Moisés Kaufman (The Laramie Project) will helm the legendary Rita Moreno ("West Side Story") as opera diva Maria Callas in the McNally play. Based on the transcripts of her master classes at Juilliard in the early 1970s, McNally spins a tale of regret, ego and humor from a celebrated talent.

Also playing the two-staged complex is a special limited engagement of David Edgar's two-play cycle Continental Divide. Tony Taccone directs the two works — Mothers Against and Daughters of the Revolution — about both sides of a gubernatorial race in the 1960s. The joint commission by Berkeley Rep and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival will inhabit both stages. The complete lineup is as follows: (subject to change)

  • The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci - (Sept. 5-Oct. 19)
  • Continental Divide - (Nov. 6-Dec. 28)
  • Yellowman - (Jan. 23-March 7, 2004)
  • The Mystery of Irma Vep - (April 9-May 23, 2004)
  • Master Class - (May 21-July 4, 2004) Season subscriptions are currently on sale at (510) 647-2949 or toll free (888) 4-BRT-TIX. Single tickets will be available in August. For more information on Berkeley Repertory Theatre, 2025 Addison Street in Berkeley, CA, visit the website at www.berkeleyrep.org.