Artistic Director Mandy Greenfield has announced the Williamstown Theatre Festival 2018 Summer Season, the 64th Season for the Tony® Award-winning theatre company, which will include three world premiere plays, a world premiere musical, and much more.
The season, running from June 26 – August 19, 2018, begins on the Main Stage with the world premiere of The Closet, (June 26 – July 14), by Tony Award nominee Douglas Carter Beane (The Little Dog Laughed), directed by Mark Brokaw (Jesus Hopped the A Train) and featuring two-time Tony Award winner and Emmy Award nominee Matthew Broderick (The Producers, It’s Only A Play), Tony Award nominee Brooks Ashmanskas (Something Rotten, Sunday in the Park with George), Tony Award nominee Jessica Hecht (A View from the Bridge, “Friends”), and Ann Harada (Avenue Q, “Community”); continues with the world premiere of a new musical, Lempicka, (July 19 – August 1), with book and lyrics by Carson Kreitzer and music by Matt Gould (Invisible Thread), directed by Tony Award nominee Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812), with Tony Award nominee Carmen Cusack (Bright Star); and closes with The Member of the Wedding (August 5 – August 19), by Carson McCullers featuring Tavi Gevinson (This is Our Youth) and directed by Lila Neugebauer (The Wolves).
The Nikos Stage season kicks off June 27 with the world premiere of The Sound Inside (June 27 – July 8), by Pulitzer Prize finalist Adam Rapp (Red Light Winter, Essential Self-Defense), directed by David Cromer (The Band’s Visit, Our Town) featuring Tony Award winner Mary-Louise Parker (Proof, “Weeds”); and also includes the world premiere of Artney Jackson (July 11 – July 22), by James Anthony Tyler (Some Old Black Man), directed by Laura Savia; Seared (July 25 – August 4) by Pulitzer Prize nominee Theresa Rebeck (The Seminar, WTF’s The Understudy), directed by Tony Award nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel (Present Laughter, Hand to God) and featuring Drama Desk Award nominee Steven Pasquale (The Bridges of Madison County); and closes out the summer with Dangerous House (August 8 – August 19) by Jen Silverman (WTF’s The Roommate), directed by Saheem Ali (WTF’s Where Storms Are Born).
The Closet | June 26 – July 14
by Douglas Carter Beane, inspired by Francis Veber’s Le Placard, by special arrangement with Simon Friend, Burnt Umber Productions and Scott Landis and directed by Mark Brokaw.
with Brooks Ashmanskas, Matthew Broderick, Ann Harada, and Jessica HechtTony Award winner, Golden Globe and Emmy nominee Matthew Broderick stars in this world premiere comedy by Douglas Carter Beane, inspired by Le Placard, the French comedy by Academy Award nominee Francis Veber. Martin O’Reilly (Broderick) is stuck in Scranton in a dead-end job, his marriage is over, and his son won’t return his calls. His only friend is his eternally optimistic co-worker (Tony nominee Jessica Hecht), who can’t bake enough muffins to stave off her romantic longings. When a stranger (Tony nominee Brooks Ashmanskas) sashays into their world, he drags Martin — and everyone around him — out of their respective closets. Helmed by Mark Brokaw, this contemporary satire breaks the chains of political correctness and celebrates the possibility of finding authenticity, love (and show tunes) in unexpected places.
A WORLD PREMIERE MUSICAL
Lempicka | July 19 – August 1
book and lyrics by Carson Kreitzer, music by Matt Gould.
by special arrangement with Seaview Productions and Marathon Live Entertainment
Directed by Rachel Chavkin, with Carmen Cusack, f eaturing Tony nominee Carmen Cusack, this world premiere musical is directed by Tony nominee Rachel Chavkin, with music by Matt Gould and book and lyrics by Carson Kreitzer.
Fleeing the Russian revolution and leaving behind a world of opulence and wealth, aristocrat Tamara de Lempicka and her beloved husband Tadeusz are forced to make a new life. In the rising tide of fascism, Tamara takes to painting to survive, and when she meets the free-spirited Rafaela (Cusack), a prostitute on the fringes of Parisian society, she’s torn between the life she cherishes with her husband and the passion, ambition, and possibility awoken in her by her new muse. Inspired by the life of the artist who transformed herself from penniless refugee to star of the art world when the world itself teetered on chaos, Lempicka looks at the beauty and danger of one painter pursuing it all.
A PLAY REVIVAL
The Member of the Wedding | August 5 – August 19
by Carson McCullers
Presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.
Directed by Lila Neugebauer, with Tavi Gevinson
Lila Neugebauer directs this revival of Carson McCullers’ beloved play. On the eve of a family wedding in 1945, housekeeper Berenice Sadie Brown can’t calm the nerves of her 12-year-old charge, Frankie (Tavi Gevinson). Berenice has raised Frankie and her cousin John Henry as though they are her own children. But as their companion, playfellow, and mother figure, Berenice is suddenly struggling to protect them from the harsh, racially motivated injustices lurking just outside their Southern home. This cherished American work explores the complicated reality of a thoughtful and hard-working woman caught between two worlds.
The Sound Inside | June 27 – July 8
by Adam Rapp, directed by David Cromer, with Mary-Louise Parker
Emmy, Golden Globe, and Tony Award winner Mary-Louise Parker stars in this world premiere play by Pulitzer Prize finalist Adam Rapp, directed by David Cromer. Bella Baird (Parker) is an accomplished professor at an Ivy League university who prizes her solitude. But when she faces a challenge she cannot tackle alone, she allies herself with a brilliant and mysterious student. Intensely intimate and deeply moving, this haunting play probes the question of what one person can do for another.
Artney Jackson | July 11 – July 22
by James Anthony Tyler, directed by Laura Savia
In this world premiere play by James Anthony Tyler, Artney Jackson is a devoted mentor, a respected employee at the local cable company, and an enthusiastic teller of “dad jokes.” After twenty-five years, he is finally up for promotion: he can almost taste the possibility of becoming a manager. Over the course of one week, Artney’s decades-old routine is shattered when his son makes plans to move out of their home, the higher-ups test his resolve to lead, and co-workers show their true colors. Will Artney Jackson overcome the turmoil and rise up? Directed by WTF Associate Artistic Director Laura Savia, this funny and touching play examines what it really means to give at the office!
A NEW PLAY
Seared | July 25 – August 4
by Theresa Rebeck, directed by Moritz von Stuelpnagel, with Steven Pasquale.
Chef Harry (Steven Pasquale) is a genius in the kitchen; his scallops are the “it” dish in Brooklyn. His business partner Mike wants to expand their restaurant, but Harry sees that as selling out. When a shrewd consultant is brought in to make the case for expansion, Harry boils over. Tony Award nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel directs this new fit-for-foodies comedy by critically acclaimed playwright Theresa Rebeck, which grapples with the intersection of creativity and commerce.
A NEW PLAY
Dangerous House | August 8 – August 19
by Jen Silverman
Directed by Saheem Ali. Noxolo is an aspiring footballer from Cape Town who moved to London for a fresh start. With the World Cup coming to South Africa and the mounting sense that her ex-lover is in peril, she is pulled back. Will Noxolo risk her safety to unravel the secrets of a life she swore to leave behind? Saheem Ali directs Jen Silverman’s new play that asks what one woman can do for her people, her nation, and for the love of her life.
the Williamstown Theatre Festival has brought America’s finest actors, directors, designers, and playwrights to the Berkshires, engaging a loyal audience of both residents and summer visitors. Each WTF season is designed to present unique opportunities for artists and audience alike, revisiting classic plays with innovative productions, developing and nurturing bold new plays and musicals, and offering a rich array of accompanying cultural events including COMMUNITY WORKS, Late-Night Cabarets, readings, workshops, and educational programs. With offices in both Williamstown and New York City, WTF creates vibrant work that feeds the wider theatrical landscape. The artists and productions shaped at the Festival each summer often go on to reach diverse audiences nationally and internationally. WTF is also home to of the nation’s top training and professional development programs for new generations of aspiring theatre artists and administrators. WTF was honored with the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre in 2002 and the Commonwealth Award for Achievement in 2011.