New Group Season to Feature Mouth to Mouth with Cale and Emery, Electra and Handball

News   New Group Season to Feature Mouth to Mouth with Cale and Emery, Electra and Handball
The New Group's forthcoming season will include Kevin Elyot's Mouth to Mouth, a revival of Eugene O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra and Seth Zvi Rosenfeld's Handball.
Lisa Emery
Lisa Emery Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Artistic director Scott Elliott will stage the O'Neill revival while Mark Brokaw directs the American premiere of the Elyot work (postponed from last season). Associate artistic director Ian Morgan handles the final show of the season. Productions will play The Acorn Theater at Theatre Row.

Christopher Abbot, David Cale, Lisa Emery, Elizabeth Jasicki, Darren Goldstein and Richard Topol comprise the cast of Mouth to Mouth, which is scheduled to begin Oct. 20. The show will open Nov. 6 for a run through Dec. 13.

Elyot's Mouth to Mouth concerns "Frank, a gay writer living with AIDS, [who] attends a party at his friend Laura's house to celebrate the return of her teenage son from abroad," according to show notes. "As the story shifts back and forth through time, it's clear that Frank may have played an unscrupulous part in the unraveling of his best girlfriend's family."

Mourning Becomes Electra will play the New Group stage Jan. 13-March 7, 2009 with an official opening set for Feb. 4. Director Elliott takes on the O'Neill trilogy of plays based on Aeschylus' The Oresteia. The work set in a New England town begins "at the end of the Civil War, [when] General Mannon's wife and daughter await his return with very different agendas. When his battle-scarred son Orin finally arrives, he finds a house divided and a tragedy in the making."

Previously seen as part of the New Group/New Works series, Rosenfeld's Handball closes the season with previews beginning April 27, 2009, toward a May 14 opening. Morgan again stages the work described thusly: "Territorial turbulence and hair trigger tempers fuel [this play]. A handball court, earmarked to become a dog run, becomes a battlefield in a quickly gentrifying neighborhood. Set against the backdrop of NYC's scorching summertime heat, this report from the front lines of a neighborhood 'in transition' is a shocking and hilarious look at community, culture clash and the laws of the streets." Casting for the latter two works are yet to be announced.

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