Jeff Baron's comedy Visiting Mr. Green, which has played at the Union Square Theatre since Nov. 28, 1997, will celebrate its 300th performance on Aug. 19. The two-hander currently stars Hal Linden and Mitchell Anderson.
Hal Linden, whose roles have included Baron de Rothschild in a Broadway musical and Barney Miller on TV, replaced Eli Wallach in the Off-Broadway comedy/drama. Wallach's Drama Desk-nominated turn in Mr. Green ended July 5.
Wallach had been with the play since it tried out in March 1997 at Florida's Coconut Grove Playhouse and opened, Dec. 15, 1997, at the Union Square Theatre in New York. The first full-length play by Jeff Baron, a writer for TV's "Tracy Ullman Show" and "Sisters," Visiting Mr. Green also helped net veteran actor Wallach the first annual Edith Oliver Award for "excellence Off-Broadway."
Mitchell Anderson stars in TV's "Party of Five." His stage credits include Gross Indecency in L.A. and Flaubert's Latest at Off Broadway's Playwrights Horizons.
In Visiting Mr. Green, Linden plays a surly 80s-age widower living on NY's Upper West Side. Amiable Ross Gardiner intrudes on this setting - by nearly running Mr. Green down with his car. Sentenced, as community service, to visit Green weekly for six months, Gardiner establishes an odd friendship with the old man. Directing the Florida production and New York productions is Lonny Price, who staged The Springhill Singing Disaster, The Rothschilds and Juno Off-Broadway. Costumes for Mr. Green are by Gail Brassard, lighting by Phil Monat (who also did the honors in Florida), and set by Loren Sherman.
There will be no performances on Sept. 29 at 8 PM and Sept. 30 at 2:30 PM, owing to the Yom Kippur holiday. Instead, shows will be added on Sept. 28 at 8 PM and Oct. 4 at 7 PM
-- By David Lefkowitz and Robert Simonson