Last Chapter of Foote's Orphans' Home Cycle Arrives Off-Broadway Jan. 7

News   Last Chapter of Foote's Orphans' Home Cycle Arrives Off-Broadway Jan. 7
The Story of a Family – the final installment in Horton Foote's three-part family epic The Orphans' Home Cycle – begins performances Off-Broadway Jan. 7 at the Signature Theatre Company.
Orphans' Home Cycle stars Jenny Dare Paulin and Maggie Lacey
Orphans' Home Cycle stars Jenny Dare Paulin and Maggie Lacey Photo by Gregory Costanzo

Comprised of the plays 1918, Cousins and The Death of Papa, the concluding works in the trilogy will officially open Jan. 26 under the direction of Michael Wilson.

The Story of a Family, according to the Signature, "begins with the turmoil of World War I and ends with the characters looking to the future of their family and land."

The Signature Theatre co-presents the nine-play cycle with Hartford Stage, where Orphans' made its world premiere earlier this fall. Wilson serves as artistic director of Hartford Stage.

The first part of the Texas-set drama, The Story of a Childhood, began performances Nov. 5; and the second part, The Story of a Marriage, began Dec. 3. Full marathons are scheduled for Feb. 6 and 27, and March 6. Orphans is scheduled to run through March 28.

Based partly on the life of Foote's father and the courtship of his parents, all of the plays in The Orphans' Home Cycle were originally penned as full-length works. Hartford Stage commissioned Foote to adapt the plays into their current three-part form in 2007. While several of the plays in the cycle were seen prior to the world premiere of this packaging, the plays Roots in a Parched Ground, Convicts, Cousins and Valentine's Day, make their debut here. Foote's daughter, Tony-nominated actress Hallie Foote (Dividing the Estate) portrays Mary Vaughn in a cast that also features Bill Heck ("The Closer," "Medium") in the central role of Horace Robedaux, with Dividing the Estate actress Maggie Lacey as his wife, Elizabeth Vaughn Robedaux, and James DeMarse (Dividing the Estate, The Trip to Bountiful) as Henry Vaughn.

Completing the cast are Devon Abner, Mike Boland, Pat Bowie, Leon Addison Brown, Justin Fuller, Jasmine Harrison, Henry Hodges, Annalee Jefferies, Virginia Kull, Gilbert Owuor, Jenny Dare Paulin, Pamela Payton-Wright, Bryce Pinkham, Stephen Plunkett, Emily Robinson, Lucas Caleb Rooney, Dylan Riley Snyder and Charles Turner.

The Orphans' Home Cycle has set design by Jeff Cowie and David Barber, costume design by David Woolard, lighting design by Rui Rita, original music and sound design by John Gromada and choreography by Peter Pucci. Dialect coach is Ralph Zito. Fight director is Mark Olson.

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." The 92-year-old Foote had been in Hartford, CT, where he was putting the finishing touches on Orphans' Home Cycle, when he died last March.

The Orphans' Home Cycle "begins with a father's death in a small-Texas town at the turn of the century, a loss that sends his son, Horace Robedaux, on an odyssey through the darkest corners of the heart as he learns to become a husband, father, and patriarch," according to press notes.

Part I (The Story of a Childhood) consists of the plays Roots in a Parched Ground, Convicts and Lily Dale; Part II (The Story of a Marriage) includes The Widow Claire, Courtship and Valentine's Day; and Part III (The Story of a Family) concludes with 1918, Cousins and The Death of Papa.

For tickets and more information visit SignatureTheatre.

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