Will Hare's Stuff Happen at the Public?

News   Will Hare's Stuff Happen at the Public? David Hare’s play Stuff Happens — based on the incidents that led to the current war in Iraq — may be produced in New York at the Public Theater.

The New York Post reports that playwright Hare is currently in discussions with the Public to bring his critically acclaimed play to the downtown theatre. Because the play demands a cast of 30, the cost of staging the play would be difficult for the theatre founded by Joe Papp.

The New York daily says, however, that producer Scott Rudin — a friend and frequent producer of Hare's work — has been approached about helping the Public mount Stuff Happens. Rudin previously produced Hare's Broadway productions of Amy's View, The Blue Room, The Judas Kiss and Skylight.

Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis told the Post, "I love Stuff Happens. I think it is the kind of theatre the Public should be involved in. We don't know if we've figured out a way [to do it] yet, but we would love to be successful."

Stuff Happens depicts the run-up to the Iraq War. Hare has been at pains to point out that the show is a history play rather than a documentary, with the secret diplomacy imagined and dramatized. It started life at Britain’s National Theatre with Alex Jennings as George Bush, directed by Nicholas Hytner. As well as Bush and Blair, Hare put such figures as U.N. weapons inspector Hans Blick, Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell on stage. The title is taken from a phrase used by Donald Rumsfeld.

Stuff Happens received a New York reading at the Tribeca Theatre Festival in 2004. It was also presented in Los Angeles with a cast that included Keith Carradine and Julian Sands. A new production opened in Sydney, Australia, in July.

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