Shepard's Kicking a Dead Horse Opens at the Public July 14

News   Shepard's Kicking a Dead Horse Opens at the Public July 14
Stephen Rea faces the Wild West in the U.S. premiere of Sam Shepard's Kicking a Dead Horse, which officially opens at the Public Theater July 14.
Stephen Rea
Stephen Rea Photo by Joan Marcus

Shepard directs the American debut of his work that began performances June 25. The extended engagement currently runs through Aug. 10. The Public run is a co-production with Ireland's Abbey Theatre, where Kicking a Dead Horse was originally commissioned. The two-hander concerns Americana art dealer Hobart Struther who heads west in search of the "real thing," but all he gets is a dead horse and an existential crisis. Shepard penned the role of art dealer Hobart Struther especially for Academy Award nominee Rea. Actress Elissa Piszel performs the non-speaking role of Young Woman.

Kicking a Dead Horse has a design team composed of Brian Vahey (set design), Joan Bergin (costume design), John Comisky (lighting design) and Dan Moses Schreier (sound design).

The Public has previously presented Shepard's Curse of the Starving Class (1978), Tongues (1979), True West (1980) and Simpatico (1994).

Stephen Rea received an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe nomination for his work in the film "The Crying Game" and a Tony Award nomination for his performance in Someone Who'll Watch Over Me. He began his career at the Abbey Theatre before moving to London. Among Rea's numerous film credits are "Stuck," "Sisters," "Sixty Six," "Till Death," "V for Vendetta," "Breakfast on Pluto," "The River Queen," "The Good Shepherd," "The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea," "All Men Are Mortal," "Prêt a Porter," "Interview with a Vampire," "The Doctor and the Devils," "The House," "Company of Wolves," "Loose Connections" and "Angel."

Show times are Tuesdays at 7 PM, Wednesdays-Fridays at 8 PM, Saturdays at 2 and 8 PM and Sundays at 3 and 7 PM.

The Public Theater is located at 425 Lafayette Street. Tickets are available by calling (212) 967-7555 or by visiting

Elissa Piszel and Stephen Rea in <i>Kicking a Dead Horse.</i>
Elissa Piszel and Stephen Rea in Kicking a Dead Horse. Photo by Joan Marcus
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