A 50th anniversary production of Waiting for Godot, starring John Turturro, Tony Shalhoub and Christopher Lloyd, will begin the Classic Stage Company's 31st year -- its first under the aegis of artistic director Barry Edelstein and producing director Beth Emelson.
Director Andrei Belgrader returns to CSC, where he staged Scapin with Stanley Tucci and Rameau's Nephew with Shalhoub, to direct the Samuel Beckett classic. CSC's outgoing artistic director David Esbjornson will supervise this production and stay with the theatre through the show's opening, Nov. 18. Previews for Godot begin Nov. 10, and the engagement concludes Dec. 20.
Turturro told the New York Times (Sept. 11), "I've never actually seen the play, but I've been reading it to my 8 year-old and he's been laughing so I think that's a good sign."
Turturro's film credits include: "Rounders," "He Got Game," "The Big Lebowski," "Quiz Show," and "Jungle Fever."
Shalhoub is best known for his role as Taxi Driver, Antonio on NBC's sitcom "Wings." he has appeared in several movies including the now playing "Imposters," "Big Night," "Primary Colors," and "Men in Black." He has appeared on Broadway in Conversations With My Father, and The Heidi Chronicles. The mad-eyed actor, Lloyd, is probably best known as burned-out cabbie Reverend Jim from TV's "Taxi," but has also appeared as Doc Brown in the three "Back to the Future" films, as well as playing Uncle Fester in the two recent "Addams Family" films.
No news yet for the casting of the other two roles ("Lucky" & "The Boy") in the absurdist classic. Production rehearsals begin Oct. 19.
Other works by Beckett include Krapp's Last Tape, Happy Days, Endgame.
Edelstein will take charge officially with the second offering of the CSC season: the American premiere of Martin Crimp's new translation of Moliere's comic masterpiece, The Misanthrope, and will direct Tony-winner Roger Rees in the title role. This production runs Jan. 26-Feb. 28, 1999.
Concluding the season, Mar. 16-Apr. 11, 1999, will be a dance-theatre adaptation of Gustave Flaubert's A Simple Heart, created and co directed by Paul Lazar and choreographer Annie-B. Parson.
Augmenting these offerings will be readings, roundtable forums, discussions with scholars and theatre practitioners. A look at Beckett in the context of 1940's Europe, along with a consideration of his antecedents and his influences, will surround Godot. And a "Moliere Festival," comprised of readings of other Moliere translations and adaptations, will accompany The Misanthrope.
CSC will also continue its tradition of Tuesday night post-performance discussions with the company and artistic staff and Saturday afternoon symposia with academic experts on the season's plays.
New artistic director Edelstein, a Rhodes scholar, trained as a dramaturg and assistant director on the NY Shakespeare Festival's Shakespeare marathon. He went on to stage The Merchant of Venice and Steve Martin's Wasp and Other Plays at the Public Theatre. Other credits include How I Learned To Drive at MD's Center Stage and shows at RI's Trinity Rep and the NJ Shakespeare Festival.