Second Stage Lines Up Terrence McNally Revival and World Premiere by Neil LaBute

By Michael Gioia
28 May 2014

Terrence McNally
Terrence McNally
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Second Stage Theatre has announced two productions for its upcoming 36th season — Lips Together, Teeth Apart, the first New York production in 23 years of Terrence McNally's acclaimed play, and the world premiere of Neil LaBute's dark comedy The Way We Get By.

McNally's Lips Together, Teeth Apart will be directed by Peter DuBois, who has directed several productions at Second Stage, including Becky Shaw, Trust and All New People.

McNally (Mothers and Sons) returns to Second Stage, which previously presented his play Some Men during its 2006-07 season, and LaBute (Reasons to Be Pretty) makes his Second Stage debut with The Way We Get By.

"I'm proud to announce these two productions from writers I consider to be among the most important currently working in American theatre," said Second Stage founding artistic director Carole Rothman in a statement. "Lips Together… is one of Terrence's finest plays – I've wanted to mount a production for several years and I'm so pleased that both Terrence and Peter will be back at our theatre. I've long admired Neil LaBute's plays and I’m thrilled we are debuting one of his works at Second Stage – I know our audiences will embrace his powerful voice and this surprising and uncompromising new work."



Lips Together, Teeth Apart is scheduled to begin previews Oct. 7 towards a late-October opening. Here's how it's billed: "It's the 4th of July on Fire Island where a brother and sister and their spouses are spending the quintessential American summer weekend in an unfamiliar setting. As their season in the sun unfolds, the two couples do their best to enjoy themselves despite their prejudices and insecurities. The grill is fired up, the drinks are cold and the pool is open but no one is going in. Terrence McNally's trenchant comedy receives its first New York revival in 23 years under the direction of Peter DuBois."

The Way We Get By is scheduled for summer 2015. Here's how Second Stage describes the new work: "Meet Beth and Doug: two people who have no problems getting dates with their partners of choice. What they do have, however, is a very awkward encounter after spending one hot night together following a drunken wedding reception they attend. They wake up to a blurry morning where the rules of attraction, sex and society are waiting for them before their first cup of coffee, which leads them to ponder how much they really know about each other and how much they really care about what other people think. The Way We Get By is a play about love and lust and the whole damn thing."

Second Stage is currently presenting The Substance of Fire at the Tony Kiser Theatre and the New York premiere of American Hero as part of its Second Stage Theatre Uptown series.

For more information and tickets, call (212) 246-4422 or visit www.2ST.com. All productions are staged at Second Stage's Tony Kiser Theatre at 305 West 43rd Street (just west of Eighth Avenue).