Joanne Woodward will direct and Gene Wilder will act in the 2001 Westport Country Playhouse season. Also on the roster are a new play by David Wiltse and a former production of the temporarily defunct Blue Light Theatre Company.
Woodward, who last year become heavily involved in the day-to-day operations of the 71-year-old theatre, will direct Richard Greenberg's drama of family mysteries and the mystery of family, Three Days of Rain. The play ran at Off-Broadway's Manhattan Theatre Club a couple seasons back. Last year, Woodward directed Maugham's The Constant Wife at Westport.
Wilder will act in a quartet of comic plays billed under the title Don't Make Me Laugh. The four one-acts are Anton Chekhov's The Proposal and On the Harmful Effects of Tobacco; Shaw's The Music Cure; and Feydeau's Caught with His Trance Down. Gene Saks will direct. Wilder is best known for such movies as "Young Frankenstein," "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" and, of course, "The Producers," currently a hit musical on Broadway.
Director Darko Tresnjak's take of Carlo Gozzi's classic tale, Princess Turandot, will open the season. The play was the last to be presented by New York's Blue Light Theatre Company, which recently suspended operations.
Also due at Westport are Heaven Can Wait, directed by Joe Grifasi; and Temporary Help, a thriller by David Wiltse, directed by Gordon Edelstein. The season will run as follows:
• Princess Turandot, directed by Darko Tresnjak, June 6-23
• Don't Make Me Laugh, starring Gene Wilder, directed by Gene Saks, June 27-July 14
• Three Days of Rain by Richard Greenberg, directed by Joanne Woodward, July 18-Aug. 4
• Heaven Can Wait, directed by Joe Grifasi, Aug. 8-25
• Temporary Help by David Wiltse, by Gordon Edelstein, Aug. 29 Sept. 1
For more information, call (203) 227-4177.