Theatre Pals Take Ailing Friend to Holy Waters in Lavery's Last Easter, Opening Off-Broadway Oct. 7

News   Theatre Pals Take Ailing Friend to Holy Waters in Lavery's Last Easter, Opening Off-Broadway Oct. 7 Following last season's success with Frozen, MCC Theatre opens its new Off-Broadway season Oct. 7 with Last Easter from the same collaborators, playwright Bryony Lavery and director Doug Hughes.
Veanne Cox in The Last Easter
Veanne Cox in The Last Easter Photo by Carol Rosegg

Veanne Cox, recently of Caroline, or Change, heads the cast of the new work, which began previews Sept. 16 for a run at the Lucille Lortel Theatre through Oct. 23.

In Last Easter, a London lighting designer named June (Cox) tries to hide the fact she is dying of cancer from her theatre-folk friends. Once the secret is unraveled, they journey from London to Lourdes to bless her in the holy waters. Of course, they indulge in wine and revelry along the way.

"It is about friendship, God, theatre, miracles, death, religion, duty …and jokes! It’s a comedy," states playwright Lavery on the company's website. Noting the turn away from the heavy subject matter of the missing-child drama Frozen, she adds "I wanted to give you A Big Laugh. You deserve it!"

Jeffrey Carlson (Taboo), Jeffrey Scott Green (Breaking the Code), Clea Lewis (Writer's Block) and Florencia Lozano (Where's My Money?, "One Life to Live") also appear in the work playing a singer-female impersonator, a ghostly stagehand, a prop maker and an actress, respectively.

The design team of Last Easter includes Hugh Landwehr (set), Catherine Zuber (costume), Clifton Taylor (lighting) and Fabian Obispo (sound) — the latter also provides original music. Lavery's Frozen gave MCC its first Broadway credit, having come close in the past with Margaret Edson's Wit. The show transferred to Circle in the Square, where it earned four Tony Award nominations, including those for Featured Actor (Brían O'Byrne), Actress (Swoosie Kurtz), Direction (Hughes) and Best Play. Actor O'Byrne took home the Tony.

The MCC season continues with the world premiere of Neil LaBute's Fat Pig, set for a Nov. 17, 2004-Jan. 8, 2005 run under the direction of Jo Bonney (Living Out, Fifth of July). The final play of the season — slated for an April-May 2005 engagement — is yet to be announced.

For tickets to MCC's Last Easter at the Lortel, 121 Christopher Street (between Bleecker and Hudson St.), call (212) 279-4200. For more information, visit www.mcctheater.com.

From Left: Veanne Cox, Jeffrey Carlson, Clea Lewis and Florencia Lozano
From Left: Veanne Cox, Jeffrey Carlson, Clea Lewis and Florencia Lozano Photo by Carol Rosegg
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