Emmy winners Christopher Lloyd ("Taxi") and Holland Taylor ("The Practice") continue on in the Geffen Playhouse's Los Angeles premiere of Yasmina Reza's The Unexpected Man, extending through Oct. 27. The play, translated by Art's translator Christopher Hampton, was scheduled to begin previews Sept. 11 but lost early performances due to the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. As such, the Oct. 21 closing date was pushed forward by a week.
Lloyd won two Emmys as the wild-eyed driver Jim Ignatowski on "Taxi." Although Lloyd began his career in the theatre, winning a Drama Desk and Obie Award for Kaspar, he is best remembered for his film roles in all three "Back to the Future" flicks, "The Addams Family" and "Who Framed Roger Rabbit." Taylor, who portrayed Judge Roberta Kittleson on "The Practice," performed in the world premieres of Cocktail Hour, Drinks Before Dinner, Children, Colette and the very first reading of Love Letters with A.R. Gurney, as well as Moose Murders, Butley and Breakfast with Les and Bess.
The Unexpected Man, recently seen Off-Broadway with Alan Bates and Eileen Atkins, is a drama from the French scribe of Art, rotating on the simple idea of two strangers sitting together on a train. He's a novelist, disillusioned with his writing and with his life, while she contemplates the relationships in her life, all the while knowing that the writer she admires most sits directly across from her.
Maria Mileaf directs. Her recent credits include Going to St. Ives at La Jolla Playhouse, Off-Broadway's Hard Feelings, Lobster Alice and Erik Ehn's Maid. She also staged the national tour and Chicago productions of Art.
Designing The Unexpected Man are Art's Mark Thompson (sets, costumes), Hugh Vanstone (lighting) and Mic Pool (sound). David Yershon, who composed the scores to Art and Life x 3, will bring his Off-Broadway Unexpected Mana score to Los Angeles. Tickets are $30-$46. The Geffen Playhouse is at 10886 Le Conte Avenue in Westwood, CA. The Geffen Playhouse is on the web at http://www.geffenplayhouse.com.
— By Christine Ehren