Westfeldt Plays Provocative Memoir Writer in Cram's A Lifetime Burning Off-Broadway

News   Westfeldt Plays Provocative Memoir Writer in Cram's A Lifetime Burning Off-Broadway Jennifer Westfeldt stars in the Off-Broadway world premiere of Cusi Cram's A Lifetime Burning, about a writer who embellishes her memoir with fiction, starting previews July 28 at Primary Stages.
Jennifer Westfeldt and playwright Cusi Cram
Jennifer Westfeldt and playwright Cusi Cram Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Pam MacKinnon directs the play that also features Isabel Keating (The Boy From Oz, Hairspray, Enchanted April), Christina Kirk (Well, God's Ear, Suitcase) and Raul Castillo (School of the Americas). The play opens Aug. 11 and runs to Sept. 5. According to Primary Stages, Westfeldt (Wonderful Town, "Kissing Jessica Stein," "Ira & Abby") stars as "trust fund darling Emma [who] imagines what her life would have been like had she come from a less privileged background. Trouble is, she chronicles her alternate life in a new tell-all 'memoir' that was sold for a hefty advance. When Emma is exposed, will her sister, Tess (Kirk), stand by her? Or will Emma's deceit destroy their already fractured relationship? This dark comedy brings up questions of legacy, loyalty and what it means to belong."

The design team for A Lifetime Burning includes Kris Stone (set), Theresa Squire (costumes), David Weiner (lights) and Daniel Baker (sound). The production stage manager is C.A. Clark.

Cram's Dusty and the Big Bad World, a satire involving censorship, gay relationships and children's TV, recently had its world premiere by Denver Center Theatre Company. Westfeldt intends to make a film of the property. Cram's work has been seen at Barrington Stage, The Public Theater and South Coast Rep.

Primary Stages will continue its 25th anniversary season with the New York premieres of Charlayne Woodard's The Night Watcher, directed by Daniel Sullivan (Sept. 22-Oct. 31), and Lucinda Coxon Happy Now?, directed by Liz Dimond (Jan. 26-March 10, 2010).

Tickets to Primary Stages' A Lifetime Burning at 59E59 Theaters, 59 East 59th Street (between Park and Madison Avenues), are available by calling (212) 279-4200. For more information, visit PrimaryStages.org.

Cusi Cram, Raul Castillo, Isabel Keating, Jennifer Westfeldt, Christina Kirk and Pam MacKinnon
Cusi Cram, Raul Castillo, Isabel Keating, Jennifer Westfeldt, Christina Kirk and Pam MacKinnon