The entire original Broadway cast, with the exception of actress Elizabeth Ashley, reunited for the Hartford run, which began performances May 28. Hartford Stage artistic director Michael Wilson, who staged the Broadway and Off-Broadway engagements of the work, repeated his duties.
Newly added for the Hartford run is two-time Tony Award nominee and Foote veteran Lois Smith, who succeeded Ashley in the role of matriarch Stella Gordon. The cast also stars Tony nominee Hallie Foote, Arthur French, Penny Fuller, Gerald McRaney, Devon Abner, Pat Bowie, James DeMarse, Virginia Kull, Maggie Lacey, Nicole Lowrance, Jenny Dare Paulin and Keiana Richard.
Press notes for the Hartford run state, "Matriarch Stella Gordon is determined not to divide her 100 year old Texas estate, despite her family's declining wealth and the looming financial crisis. But her three children have another plan. Old resentments and sibling rivalries surface, as the members of this hilariously dysfunctional family go head to head to see who might claim the biggest piece of the pie in Dividing the Estate."
As on Broadway, the Hartford production features sets by Jeff Cowie, costumes by David C. Woolard, lighting by Rui Rita and original music and sound by John Gromada.
Dividing the Estate played an Off-Broadway run at Primary Stages in 2007 prior to arriving on Broadway Oct. 23, 2008, for a limited engagement at the Booth Theatre through Jan. 4, 2009. Lincoln Center and Primary Stages co-produced the Broadway run. Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Foote died in Hartford, CT, on March 4 while putting the finishing touches on his ambitious Texas-set work, The Orphans' Home Cycle. The nine-play cycle will premiere at Hartford Stage later this summer prior to arriving Off-Broadway at the Signature Theatre Company Oct. 29, 2009-April 11, 2010.
A Pulitzer Prize winner for The Young Man from Atlanta, Foote's plays also include Dividing the Estate (2009 Tony nomination for Best Play), The Carpetbagger's Children, The Trip to Bountiful, The Traveling Lady, The Chase, The Last of the Thorntons and Talking Pictures, among others. He is an Academy Award winner for the screenplays "Tender Mercies" and "To Kill a Mockingbird."