Reading of Broadway-Aimed Picnic Featured Melissa Leo, Hayden Panettiere, Laura Innes, Seth Numrich, Lois Smith

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and Adam Hetrick
08 Jun 2011

Hayden Panettiere
Hayden Panettiere

As previously reported, Tony Award-winning producer Darren Bagert plans to bring a revival of William Inge's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Picnic to Broadway this season.

In a recent statement Bagert revealed that Picnic, previously announced for a fall 2010 Broadway debut with David Cromer at the helm, is now preparing for a Broadway arrival during the 2011-2012 season with Sam Gold (Circle Mirror Transformation) attached to direct.

The New York Times reports that a reading of the award-winning play was held June 6. The cast boasted Academy Award-winning "The Fighter" actress Melissa Leo as Flo with Hayden Panettiere ("Heroes") as Flo's daughter Madge; Laura Innes ("ER") as neighbor Rosemary; War Horse's Seth Numrich as student Alan; theatre veteran Lois Smith as Helen Potts; and Finn Wittrock as Hal.

Picnic, about passions of Midwesterners aroused went a stranger comes to town over a hot Labor Day holiday, originally opened in 1953, winning the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and was later adapted into an Academy Award-winning motion picture in 1955.

Producer Bagert told the Times, "Mr. Inge is definitely a playwright that is undervalued still, and there is a subtle strength in Sam Gold’s direction that, I think, makes him a perfect match for Inge."

Bagert will produce the revival with the Araca Group. No official announcement has been made.