Rosaline Ayres will direct the production that will run July 13-15 at the Skirball Cultural Center. Asner (Sunrise at Campobello, Born Yesterday, Face of a Hero) will step into the role of Abraham. Also added to the cast is Matthew Wolf as Spinoza.
As previously reported, Tony Award winner Richard Easton (The Invention of Love, Coast of Utopia), who originated the role of Saul Levi Mortera in the 2008 Off-Broadway production at Classic Stage Company, will reprise his performances for Los Angeles audiences. The cast will also include Andrea Gabriel, Arye Gross and Amy Pietz.
According to LATW, "The play follows young philosopher Baruch de Spinoza as he faces excommunication from the Jewish community for his provocative, subversive new ideas. Often called the 'absolute philosopher' of the 17th century, Spinoza was a passionate advocate of rationalism, the idea that a man's intellect is superior to his senses. A Portuguese Jew living in Amsterdam, Spinoza's allegedly atheist beliefs not only shocked the Jewish community, but jeopardized their comfortable relationship with the surrounding Dutch society. With his special blend of cerebral language and wry humor, critically-acclaimed playwright David Ives gives Spinoza a chance to defend himself in front of a community of critics in a courtroom clash between religion and rationalism."
All LATW performances are recorded and broadcast on LATW's nationally syndicated radio theatre series, "The Play's the Thing."
For tickets to any of "The Play's the Thing" productions at the Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Boulevard, call the L.A. Theatre Works box office at (310) 827-0889. For more information visit latw.org.