Lithgow's film work includes "The World According to Garp," "Terms of Endearment" and "Shrek," and his TV credits include "Third Rock From the Sun," "Dexter" and "How I Met Your Mother."
Stories by Heart is a personal reminiscence using the power of storytelling as its narrative glue. Lithgow traces his roots as an actor and storyteller, working two stories read to him as a child ("Uncle Fred Flits By" by P. G. Wodehouse and "Haircut" by Ring Lardner) into his own narrative.
"In the first story, a fretful young Englishman is taken on a wild afternoon’s escapade in suburban London by his irrepressible uncle. In a hilarious tour de force, Lithgow performs with zany abandon, portraying ten distinct, outrageous characters (including a parrot)," press notes state. "By contrast, 'Haircut' is a darkly comic look at Midwestern American implacability. It is a captivating yarn told by a gossipy barber in small-town Michigan as he gives a shave and a haircut to a stranger in town. Stories By Heart provides ample evidence of the power of storytelling, the magic of theatre, and the talents of one of our greatest living actors."
The show was first produced at Lincoln Center in New York in 2008, and it was widely admired as a poignant tribute to Lithgow's parents and grandmother.