Colleagues Theatre Company, the unique Off-Off-Broadway company devoted to works by, about, for and/or featuring mature adults, stages the world premiere of Second Summer, starring Joan Copeland, beginning Jan. 4.
Gary Richards' play is set in Brooklyn and Florida in the present. Recent Brooklyn widower Reginald Herring (played by Gil Rogers) expects to live out his final years alone in Florida, but he meets new people and finds new, unexpected romance.
Roy B. Steinberg directs the seven-member company at the Neighborhood Playhouse. Official opening is Jan. 5. Performances continue to Jan. 20.
Copeland, who plays the widower's neighbor in the touching comedy, won a Drama Desk Award for her work in the original Broadway production of The American Clock and received a Drama Desk nomination for the revival of Pal Joey at the Circle in the Square uptown. Her other Broadway shows include the Richard Rodgers musical, Two by Two, The Price, Tovarich and Detective Story.
In summer 2000, she appeared in Noel Coward's Tonight at 8:30 at Williamstown Theatre Festival. The Second Summer company also includes Gil Rogers, Colleagues founder and producing director Catherine Wolf, Joel Rooks, Margery Beddow, Jerry Rockwood, Carolyn Younger.
Richards' plays include Dividends with Fyvush Finkle, Stag, Shiva, Tropical Depression, Social Studies, Slambook and more. His play, The Root, won five Dramalogue Awards in Los Angeles including Best Writing, plus four Miami, FL, Carbonell Award nominations. He is managing producer of the Actors Studio Free Theatre he produced many New York City premieres including Larry Gelbart's Power Failure, directed by Arthur Penn, Trudy Blue by Marsha Norman and Lemonade by Eve Ensler.
Designers are Drew Francis (sets), Louis Valantasis (costumes), Jeff Fontaine (lights) and David A. Gilman (sound). The original score is by David Lopato.
Tickets are $15. The Neighborhood Playhouse is at 340 East 54th Street (between First and Second Avenues). For ticket information, call (212) 279-4200.
— By Kenneth Jones