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Thursday, 01 August 2013 20:35

William Hurt, T.R. Knight & Daphne Rubin-Vega Join CSC's ROMEO & JULIET






Classic Stage Company, under the leadership of Artistic Director Brian Kulick and Executive Director Greg Reiner, announced today additional casting for its upcoming production of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet starring Elizabeth Olsen as Juliet.  Academy Award winner William Hurt will play the role of Friar Laurence; Emmy Award nominee T.R.  Knight has been cast as Mercutio and Tony Award nominee Daphne Rubin-Vega as the Nurse.  CSC also announced that Finn Wittrock, previously announced to co-star as Romeo, has withdrawn from the production due to a film offer.  A new Romeo and complete casting will be announced shortly.  CSC’s Romeo & Juliet, which begins performances Friday, September 27, will be directed by Tea Alagić (Jackie). The official opening night is Wednesday, October 16Romeo & Juliet will play a limited engagement through Sunday, November 3.  Tickets will go on sale Thursday, September 5 at 12pm.

Romeo & Juliet continues CSC's ongoing exploration of the works of William Shakespeare which has included critically-acclaimed productions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Bebe Neuwirth and Taylor Mac, The Tempest with Mandy Patinkin and Hamlet with Michael Cumpsty (for which he received an Obie Award for his performance).

Elizabeth Olsen (Juliet) received a Gotham Award, Critics Choice, and Independent Spirit Award nomination for Lead Actress for her performance in Martha Marcy May Marlene from Fox Searchlight. Other films include Liberal Arts, Red Lights, Silent House, Kill Your Darlings, Very Good Girls and two films to be released this fall:  Therese (also starring Jessica Lange) and Spike Lee’s Old Boy (co-starring Josh Brolin).  She will also co-star in the upcoming Godzilla, to be released next spring. 

William Hurt (Friar Laurence) won a Theatre World Award in 1978 for originating the role of Kenneth Talley in Lanford Wilson’s Fifth of July Off-Broadway.  In 1984, he received a Tony Award nomination for David Rabe’s Hurlyburly. His other theater credits include Artists Repertory Theatre productions of The Drawer Boy, Long Day's Journey Into Night, and No Man's Land. Hurt won the Academy Award as Best Actor for Kiss of the Spider Woman and was also nominated for Children of a Lesser God, Broadcast News and A History of Violence.  Among his numerous film credits are The Big Chill, Body Heat, Eyewitness, Altered States, Jane Eyre, One True Thing, Tuck Everlasting and Into the Wild.  He was nominated for Emmy Awards for his performances in HBO’s “Too Big To Fail” and “Damages” on FX opposite Glenn Close.

T.R. Knight (Mercutio).  Broadway: A Life In The Theatre, Tartuffe, Noises Off.  Off-Broadway:  Sold, The Marriage of Bette and Boo, Scattergood (Drama Desk nomination), Marvin’s Room.  Regional:  Parade at Mark Taper Forum.  On television, he received an Emmy Award nomination for his role as George O’Malley on the ABC hit series “Grey’s Anatomy.”  Other television work includes “The Good Wife” and “Law & Order: Special Victims Unity.”

Daphne Rubin-Vega (Nurse) is a two-time Tony Award and Drama Desk Award nominee (1996/2004) and recipient of the Theatre World and Obie Awards.  She has been a member of the Labyrinth TheaterCompany since 1992.  Rubin-Vega is perhaps best known for the roles she originated, including Mimi in Rent and Conchita in Anna in the Tropics, both Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway shows for which she was nominated for Tony Awards. She also originated the role of Rahmi in Gum, Sofia in Nilo Cruz’s Two Sisters and A Piano, Canary Mary in Suzan-Lori Parks' Fuckin’ A (Lucille Lortel nomination) and Lucy in Jack Goes Boating at the Public Theater.  She starred in the Broadway revivals of The Rocky Horror Picture Show as Magenta and in Les Miserables as Fantine.   Film credits include detective Gloria Perez in Wild Things, starring Kevin Bacon and Matt Dillon (Blockbuster Award for Best Supporting Actress), Tia in Flawless opposite Robert De Niro, and most recently, reprising the role of Lucy in the film version of Jack Goes Boating, Phillip Seymour Hoffman's film directorial debut. 

CSC is the award-winning Off-Broadway theatre committed to re-imaging the classical repertory for a contemporary American audience. Founded in 1967, CSC uses works of the past as a way to engage in the issues of today. Highly respected and widely regarded as a major force in American theatre, it has become the home to New York’s finest established and emerging artists, the place where they gather to grapple with the great works of the world’s repertory from Sophocles to Sondheim. CSC has been cited repeatedly by all the major Off-Broadway theater awards: Obies, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League and the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Body of Work.

CSC’s upcoming 2013/2014 Season features William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, starring Elizabeth Olsen, directed by Tea Alagić; The Last Two People On Earth: An Apocalyptic Vaudeville, performed by Mandy Patinkin and Taylor Mac, directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman; Bertolt Brecht’s A Man’s A Man, featuring new music by Duncan Sheik, directed by Brian Kulick; and David Ives’ The Heir Apparent, adapted from the play by Jean-François Regnard, directed by John Rando. 

CSC recently concluded its 45th Anniversary Season which featured Anton Chekhov’s Ivanov, starring Ethan Hawke, Joely Richardson and Juliet Rylance, directed by Austin Pendleton; followed by the highly-acclaimed, sold-out production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Passion, directed by John Doyle, and starring Melissa Errico, Judy Kuhn and Ryan Silverman; and concluded with Brecht’s The Caucasian Chalk Circle, starring Christopher Lloyd, with music by Duncan Sheik, directed by Brian Kulick.  Past productions include: Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Bebe Neuwirth; Brecht’s Galileo with F. Murray Abraham; Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard with Dianne Wiest and John Turturro; Chekhov’s Three Sisters with Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jessica Hecht, Juliet Rylance and Peter Sarsgaard; David Ives' The School for Lies with Hamish Linklater; Unnatural Acts conceived by Tony Speciale; Ostrovsky’s The Forest with Dianne Wiest and John Douglas Thompson; David Ives' Venus in Fur withNina Arianda (Broadway transfer 2011/2012, Tony Award nom. Best Play); Shakespeare's The Tempest with Mandy Patinkin; Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya with Maggie Gyllenhaal, Denis O’Hare and Peter Sarsgaard; Anne Carson’s An Oresteia; Chekhov’s The Seagull with Dianne Wiest and Alan Cumming; David Ives' New Jerusalem  with Richard Easton; Richard III, Richard II and Hamlet with Michael Cumpsty; Yasmina Reza’s A Spanish Play with Zoe Caldwell; Steve Martin’s adaptation of The Underpants; Philip Glass’s In the Penal Colony; Bill Irwin’s adaptation of Texts for Nothing; Waiting for Godot with John Turturro, Tony Shalhoub and Christopher Lloyd;  Entertaining Mr. Sloane with Brian Murray; Harold Pinter’s The Birthday Party with David Strathairnand Faust Parts I and II, directed by CSC founding Artistic Director Christopher Martin.