Hartford Stage will open its latest production, Dollhouse, on Feb. 22 for a run through March 25. This production of Henrik Ibsen's most famous realist drama is titled DollHouse, a tip-off that this will not be your grandfather's, or even your father's, Nora. And indeed, the play, which will begin performances, has been radically adapted by playwright Theresa Rebeck (The Butterfly Collection).
DollHouse now takes place in the present day, and though a location is never mentioned, the overall feel is Westchester County. Contemporary references to such things as Yoga and sensitivity classes pepper the script. Shelley Williams will play the lead role, who retains the name of Nora. Frank Converse plays her husband, now named Evan. Also in the cast are Christopher McCann (Mad Forest, The Changeling), Gretchen Lee Krich (a member of Off-Off-Broadway's Arden Party), Andi Jackson Ali and Glenn Fleshler.
Tracy Brigden will direct. Rebeck's other works include A View of the Dome and Family of Mann.
Tickets are $20-$55. Hartford Stage is located at 50 Church Street. For more information, call (860) 527-5151.
* In other news, Andrew McCarthy will play Tom Wingfield to Elizabeth Ashley's mother Amanda in this spring's Hartford Stage production of Tennessee Williams' memory play, The Glass Menagerie. Michael Wilson directs. The play will run April 5 to May 6.
McCarthy is well known to Hartford audiences. He starred in Horton Foote's The Death of Papa in 1999 (stepping in at the last moment for Matthew Broderick). Just before that, he starred in O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night. McCarthy was one of several actors—and among the most acclaimed—to play the central role of Clifford in the Broadway production of Warren Leight's Tony-winning Side Man. To film audiences, he was the star of "Pretty in Pink," "Mannequin" and other movies.
Ashley last appeared on Broadway in The Best Man last fall. Other notable credits in her long career include several Williams plays, including Suddenly Last Summer at Circle in the Square, Sweet Bird of Youth in Washington, D.C., and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof on Broadway.
The roles of Laura and The Gentleman Caller have not been announced.
— By Robert Simonson