"Back in 1962, most men went to the Catskill Mountains to escape the summer heat, but others took the two-hour drive to escape something else entirely: being men," press notes state. "Nestled in the land of dirty dancing and borscht belt comedy sat an inconspicuous bungalow colony that catered to a very special clientele: heterosexual men whose favorite pastime was dressing and acting as women. It was paradise for these men — white-collar professionals with families — to spend their weekends discreetly and safely inhabiting their chosen female alter egos. But when faced with the opportunity to become an official organization, these 'self-made women' had to decide whether public recognition would help them gain a place in open society or spell their own personal disaster."
Inspired by factual events, Fierstein's play is based on a true location, the Chevalier d’Eon resort – also known as Casa Susana – the subject of the 2005 Michael Hurst-Robert Swope photo book "Casa Susana," which features collection of intimate, candid and carefree snapshots of men in the 1950s-1960s who would gather at a rural home in New Jersey to dress and live as women.
Fierstein's playwriting credits include Kinky Boots, Newsies, Torch Song Trilogy, La Cage aux Folles and A Catered Affair. His stage credits include Hairspray, Fiddler On The Roof, La Cage aux Folles and Torch Song Trilogy. He has performed in the films "Mrs. Doubtfire" and "Independence Day" and the TV shows "Smash," "How I Met Your Mother," "The Good Wife," "Cheers," "The Simpsons" and "Nurse Jackie."
Mantello's directing credits include I’ll Eat You Last, The Other Place, Dogfight, Other Desert Cities, The Pride, 9 to 5, November, Three Days of Rain, The Odd Couple, Glengarry Glen Ross, Assassins, Wicked and Take Me Out. Casting, creative team, and additional listings information for Casa Valentina will be announced at a later date.
Single tickets to Casa Valentina will go on sale Sept. 23. Subscriptions for MTC's 2013-2014 season are available by calling (212) 399-3050 or visiting ManhattanTheatreClub.com.