Tony Award-winner Judith Ivey, known for her critically acclaimed work in Long Wharf Theatre's productions of The Glass Menagerie and Shirley Valentine, will star in Curse of the Starving Class, by Sam Shepard, directed by Artistic Director Gordon Edelstein.
The show will take place tonight, February 13 through March 10, 2013. Tickets are $40-$70.
The cast includes Peter Albrink (Wesley), Ben Becher (Malcolm/Slater), Judith Ivey (Ella), Clark Middleton (Emerson/Ellis), John Procaccino (Taylor), Kevin Tighe (Weston), and Elvy Yost (Emma).
The creative team is comprised of Michael Yeargan (sets), Clint Ramos (costumes), James F. Ingalls (lighting), Fitz Patton (sound), Doug Wieselman (composer), William Berloni (animal handler), and Bryce McDonald (stage manager.)
The Tate family is dead broke, the front door smashed in and nothing in the refrigerator. Dad drunkenly dreams of a hermit's life in the desert while Mom longs for European sophistication. So when both hatch schemes, independent of each other, to sell the family farm out from underneath their two children, a wild battle ensues to save each person's piece of the American Dream. This modern classic by Sam Shepard, a Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning playwright, balances dark comedy and biting satire in its look at a family fighting to stay alive.
"Shepard is one of the truly great American Playwrights, one that can be mentioned alongside the likes of Miller, O'Neill, and Williams. This is my personal favorite of his plays. It combines painful truths and wild humanity perfectly. The story rings deeply true to me. Ironically, it is one of the most realistic plays about the American family," Edelstein said.
Ivey, playing the matriarch of the Tate family, gave what was described by the New York Times as the "performance of a career" in Long Wharf Theatre's production of The Glass Menagerie. The two-time Tony Award-winner is currently appearing in The Heiress on Broadway, giving a performance described by the Hollywood Reporter as "sublimely funny."
Curse marks the first time one of Shepard's plays has been produced at Long Wharf Theatre. This OBIE Award-winning play, first produced in 1978, is part of Shepard's family play trilogy, which includes Buried Child and True West. Shepard's exploration of the myth of the West and his own experience growing up with an alcoholic father are the source of many of the themes in his most famous works.
Peter Albrink (Wesley) is making his Long Wharf Theatre debut. He attended Carnegie Mellon University's School of Drama. Some of his credits include The Ghost Brothers of Darkland County (Alliance) and A Streetcar Named Desire at Williamstown Theatre Festival, directed by David Cromer.
Ben Becher, (Malcolm/Slater) a Rutgers graduate, recently appeared in What If (Living Theatre), Damned That Valley, (New Dramatists) and The Next Big Thing (Chris O'Neil Room).