Jones (Broadway's The Heiress and Imaginary Friends) plays Sr. Aloysius, "a formidable nun" who was married before she joined her order. She runs a Catholic junior high school in the Bronx in 1964.
Goldenhersh (Off-Broadway's Psych at Playwrights Horizons and Last Dance at MTC) plays a younger nun and Ellis (MTC's Drowning Crow) plays the mother of a boy who is getting special attention from a priest.
Doug Hughes directs on MTC's Stage I at City Center. Previews begin Nov. 3 toward a Nov. 22 opening.
"The level of which and the appropriateness of [the priest's] care for the emotional well-being of his students is the sustenance of the play," according to a casting notice.
The fortysomething Sr. Aloysius has a sense of humor and irony "even though she may not always show it." She "strongly believes her methods and views are correct and vigorously imposes them, though not necessarily without shades of doubt." The play is scheduled to be read as part of the New York Stage and Film season at Vassar, in Poughkeepsie, July 23 25.
Shanley's plays include Italian American Reconciliation, Where's My Money?, Cellini, Four Dogs and a Bone, Danny and the Deep Blue Sea and Beggars in the House of Plenty. He is also known for his screenplay to "Moonstruck," which is being developed for a musical.