West Coast Vanya and Sonia, Starring Christine Ebersole, Mark Blum, Shalita Grant, Kristine Nielsen, Extends Run

The West Coast engagement of Christopher Durang's Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, which officially opened Feb. 9 following previews that began Jan. 29, has extended its run at the Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum.

David Hyde Pierce
David Hyde Pierce (Photo by Joan Marcus)

Directed by Tony winner David Hyde Pierce, who starred in the Broadway engagement of the acclaimed comedy, performances were originally scheduled to continue through March 9. Due to ticket demand, the run has been extended by a week through March 16.

Pierce based the production on the work of Nicholas Martin, who directed the Broadway staging. Martin had been announced to direct the Los Angeles production but was forced to withdraw due to scheduling conflicts.

The cast comprises Mark Blum, Christine Ebersole, Shalita Grant, David Hull, Kristine Nielsen and Liesel Allen Yeager.

Set in 21st century Bucks County, PA, with hints of 19th-century Russia, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, according to press notes, is a "riotous comedy with the Chekhovian set-up of a middle-aged Vanya and his stepsister, Sonia, who live together in their ancestral farmhouse, complete with a pond and a cherry orchard. Their normally quiet existence is thrown into upheaval by the surprise visit from their glamorous, movie-star sibling, Masha, and her 20-something boyfriend, Spike, the unlikely prophecies of their cleaning lady and an all too important costume party."

The production features sets by David Korins, costumes by Gabriel Berry, lighting by David Weiner and original music and sound design by Mark Bennett. The production stage manager is David S. Franklin.

For tickets, priced $20-$70, call (213) 972-4444 or visit online at CenterTheatreGroup.org.

The Mark Taper Forum is located at the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Avenue in Los Angeles.