Two-time Tony Award nominee Lois Smith — who received five awards for her most recent stage appearance in The Trip to Bountiful — will head the cast of 100 Saints You Should Know at the Mainstage Theater.
Kate Fodor's new play will be the first production of the Playwrights season, with previews set to begin Aug. 24. Ethan McSweeny will direct the production, which officially opens Sept. 18. Additional casting will be announced shortly.
100 Saints, according to press notes, concerns "Theresa [who] cleans the rectory of the local parish to support her unruly teenage daughter. When its priest is forced to leave the church under uncertain circumstances and return home to his protective mother (Lois Smith), Theresa finds herself compelled to pursue him. One eventful night joins them all, forcing a reckoning with the broken memories and shaken faith that divides them – and the discovery of a shared, tenuous common ground."
The upcoming season will also feature the following previously announced productions:
A Feminine Ending by Sarah Treem; directed by Blair Brown (previews begin in October at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater) "Having recently graduated from a major conservatory, and with a rocker boyfriend on the brink of stardom, aspiring composer Amanda Blue's 'extraordinary life' seems to be all mapped out. But when she’s called home to answer a distress call from her mother (Marsha Mason) about a marital crisis, Amanda’s grand plan starts to unravel."
Doris to Darlene, a Cautionary Valentine by Jordan Harrison; directed by Les Waters (previews begin in November at the Mainstage Theater)
"In the candy-colored 1960s, a biracial schoolgirl named Doris is molded into pop star Darlene by a whiz-kid record producer who culls a top-ten hit out of Wagner's 'Liebestod.' Rewind to the candy-colored 1860s, where Richard Wagner is writing the melody that will become Darlene's hit song. Fast-forward to the not-so-candy-colored present, where a teenager obsesses over Darlene's music – and his music teacher. Three dissonant decades merge into an unlikely harmony in this time-jumping pop fairy tale about the dreams and disasters behind one transcendent song."
Dead Man's Cell Phone by Sarah Ruhl; directed by Anne Bogart (previews begin in February 2008 at the Mainstage Theater)
"Gordon is dead, but his cell phone lives on. When Jean, an empathetic museum worker, answers his ringing phone beside her in a café, she is soon playing unwitting comforter and confessor to the man’s grieving friends and family. Before she knows it, Jean’s ensnarled in the underbelly of the dead man’s bizarre life."
The Drunken City by Adam Bock; directed by Trip Cullman (previews begin in March 2008 at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater)
"Off on the bar crawl to end all crawls, three twenty-something brides-to-be find their lives going topsy-turvy when one of them suddenly begins to question her future after a chance encounter with a recently jilted handsome stranger."
Saved with music and lyrics by Michael Friedman; book and lyrics by John Dempsey and Rinne Groff; directed by Gary Griffin; featuring Celia Keenan-Bolger. Based on the MGM film by Brian Dannelly and Michael Urban.
"'Are you down with G-O-D?' Good girl Mary (Celia Keenan-Bolger) and her domineering best friend Hilary Faye are starting their senior year at the top of the social food chain at American Eagle Christian High School – that is, until Mary’s boyfriend tells her he thinks he's gay. When Jesus appears in a vision, and Mary heeds his message 'to do everything she can to help him,' her good deeds are met with dire consequences, and Mary is forced to question everything she’s ever believed. Through it all, she finds faith in unexpected places and learns what it truly means to be saved."
For more information, visit www.playwrightshorizons.com.