Beginning Jan. 15, the Roundabout Theatre Company will revive George Bernard Shaw's Arms and the Man at the Gramercy Theatre off Broadway. As reported by the New York Times and confirmed by the Boneau/Bryan-Brown press agency, Arms will star Henry Czerny, Katie Finneran and Paul Michael Valley. The show opens officially Feb. 10.
Roger Rees will direct the play, said to be Shaw's fourth work. Arms originally opened at London's Avenue Theatre in 1894. A subsequent New York staging propelled Shaw's career in this country. Later, in 1909, the show was done as The Chocolate Soldier with music by Oscar Straus.
Rees will also star alongside Derek Jacobi in Uncle Vanya when that play opens the Roundabout's permanent new home at the renovated Selwyn Theatre in April. Rees was last seen on stage with Uma Thurman in The Misanthrope. Among numerous other credits, he received Tony and Olivier Awards as well as an Emmy nomination for his performance in The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby.
G.B. Shaw, a Nobel Prize-winning playwright, was born in Dublin in 1956. Arms and the Man examines military glory in a story about a soldier who begins to realize that warfare is more about careful paperwork than anything else.
Making his Roundabout debut, Henry Czerny appeared onstage in Comedy of Errors and Romeo and Juliet in Canada and in the films "The Ice Storm," "Mission: Impossible" and "A Clear and Present Danger." Joining Czerny is a Roundabout alumna Katie Finneran, who appeared in the Roundabout production of Shaw's You Never Can Tell. Finneran has also worked on Broadway in The Iceman Cometh and has appeared in Proposals, The Heiress and My Favorite Year.
Another Roundabout veteran, Paul Michael Valley made his debut on Broadway in the company's 1776, and was also in the Off Broadway productions ofHurrah at Last and Walking Off the Road as well as the television soap, "Another World."
Featured in the cast are Tom Bloom, Michael Potts, Sandra Shipley and Robert Weigart.
The production team for Arms and the Man comprises set designer Neil Patel, costume designer Frances Aronson and sound designer Donald Nicoloa.
All seats are $55 and tickets are available by calling the Gramercy Theatre at (212) 777-4900. For theatre company information visit www.roundabout theatre.org.
-- By Murdoch McBride