A Close Encounter With "David": Shear's Restoration Opens in CA June 28

News   A Close Encounter With "David": Shear's Restoration Opens in CA June 28
La Jolla Playhouse's world premiere of Restoration, a new play about an art restorer's experience with the famed Michelangelo statue of David, written by and starring two-time Tony Award nominee Claudia Shear, opens June 28 after previews from June 23 in California.
Restoration stars Kate Shindle and Claudia Shear
Restoration stars Kate Shindle and Claudia Shear Photo by Craig Schwartz

The production also features Alan Mandell, Natalija Nogulich, Daniel Serafini-Sauli and Kate Shindle.

Playhouse artistic director Christopher Ashley directs this commission by La Jolla Playhouse, playing to July 19 at the Mandell Weiss Forum in La Jolla, CA.

Shear is the two-time Tony Award nominee (Best Actress, Best Play) for Dirty Blonde, the play about Mae West and her mavens.

According to La Jolla Playhouse notes, "Inspired by the actual restoration of Michelangelo's 'David' in 2004, acclaimed playwright/actress Claudia Shear delivers a passionate, funny and moving portrait of a woman who spends a year in the shadow of a masterpiece — and uncovers herself in the process. Giulia Alfani, a once-rising star in the world of art restoration, is now working out of her late mother's garage in Brooklyn. Her mentor, Professor Williams, arrives with the opportunity of a lifetime: he has secured Giulia an interview with L'Accademia in Florence for the job of 'refreshing' the 'David' in preparation for its 500th birthday.

"The play follows Giulia as she restores the iconic statue and develops relationships with a strikingly beautiful museum administrator and an omnipresent head of security. These encounters spark a life change in Giulia, allowing her to discover the statue's imperfections, as well as her own." In her research for this fictional work, "Shear traveled to Florence several times, meeting with experts at the Galleria dell'Accademia and the Opificio delle Pietre Dure — the most respected restoration center in Italy — as well as interviewing the woman who performed the statue's 2004 restoration. She was also given exclusive access to the 'David' in order to become immersed in the world of the play."

The creative team includes Scott Pask (set designer); David C. Woolard (costume designer); David Lander (lighting designer); Dan Moses Schreier (sound designer); Kristin Ellert (projection designer); Gabriel Greene (dramaturg); and Lisa Porter (stage manager).

Tickets are available by calling the Playhouse Box Office at (858) 550-1010 or online at www.lajollaplayhouse.org.


Playwright and actress Claudia Shear's works include the solo performance piece Blown Sideways Through Life, based on her various employment experiences; and Dirty Blonde, an exploration of the life of Mae West (and a look at her fans) directed by James Lapine, for which she won a Theatre World Award, as well as Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations for Best Play and Best Actress.

Claudia Shear, Kate Shindle, Natalija Nogulich and Alan Mandell
Claudia Shear, Kate Shindle, Natalija Nogulich and Alan Mandell Photo by Craig Schwartz
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