Death of the Novel, With "Mad Men" Star Vincent Kartheiser, Begins at San Jose Rep

By Kenneth Jones
August 30, 2012

Vincent Kartheiser, widely known as ambitious ad man Pete Campbell on TV's "Mad Men," turns a new page starting Aug. 30 with the first preview of the world-premiere production of Jonathan Marc Feldman's The Death of the Novel at San Jose Repertory Theatre. Vaishnavi Sharma, Patrick Jones, Zarah Mahler and Amy Pietz also star.



During his hiatus from TV filming, Kartheiser's San Jose debut is as "a brilliant young novelist, Sebastian Justice," who "claims to be the most well-adjusted, depressed agoraphobic in Manhattan," according to Rep notes. "While he rants about anything from global warming to tennis, his publisher-ordered psychologist (a 'writer's block-whisperer') tries to get to the bottom of his grief. But when a stunning and mysterious Saudi woman intrudes into his self-contained world his emotional descent takes a sudden turn, for the raving beauty may not be the person she says she is. Will this stranger be the one to help him find his way back, and at what cost? Identities blur in this enthralling and evocative story that takes a look at the modern world through the eyes of a brilliant and tragically wounded artist."

The Death of the Novel is directed by San Jose Rep artistic director Rick Lombardo for a run to Sept. 23. Opening night is Sept. 5. It's billed as being about "finding the tenacity to thrive in a dangerous, unpredictable world, and to create again." The playwright penned the screenplay to "Swing Kids."

Kartheiser appeared as a teen in the film "Untamed Heart" opposite Christian Slater and Marisa Tomei. He played roles in the independent films "Another Day in Paradise," "Alpha Dog," "Crime and Punishment in Suburbia" and "Dandelion," and starred on the WB series "Angel." Off-Broadway, he appeared in Slag Heap at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Most recently, he starred in the feature film "In Time," directed by Andrew Niccol. The 2012 season finale of "Mad Men" aired June 10 on AMC.

The Novel creative team includes John Iacovelli (scenic designer); Denitsa Bliznakova (costume designer); David Lee Cuthbert (lighting designer); Hadden Givens Kime (sound designer); Stephanie Schliemann (stage manager); and Deirdre Rose Holland (assistant stage manager).

San Jose Repertory Theatre
 is at 101 Paseo de San Antonio, San Jose
, CA.

The San Jose Rep 2012-13 season also includes Freud's Last Session, A Christmas Carol, Next Fall, the musicals Next to Normal and A Minister's Wife (a West Coast premiere) and a title to be announced. Visit sjrep.com.