The Irish Repertory Theatre has today announced THE LETTERS SERIES, a new season featuring two plays inspired by letters and correspondence.
THE LETTERS SERIES will include DEAR LIAR by Jerome Kilty & George Bernard Shaw, starring Tony Award nominee Melissa Errico and David Staller, and LOVE LETTERS by A.R. Gurney, starring Tony Award winner Matthew Broderick and Tony Award winner Laura Benanti.
Inspired by correspondence of fact and fiction that’s stood the test of time, THE LETTERS SERIES explores the thrill of witnessing great relationships unfold and sometimes shape our history in an age of instant communication. DEAR LIAR and LOVE LETTERS allow us to look “behind the curtain” and examine the universal.
The Irish Repertory Theatre is currently the only year-round theatre company in New York City devoted to bringing Irish and Irish American works to the stage.
By Jerome Kilty & George Bernard Shaw
Directed by Charlotte Moore
Starring Melissa Errico and David Staller
Running from 25 to 30 April 2023
Adapted from the legendary correspondence between George Bernard Shaw and celebrated actress Mrs. Patrick Campbell, Jerome Kilty‘s DEAR LIAR explores the relationship between these two fiery and fascinating personalities.
In Kilty’s masterful compilation between “Stella and Joey”… (which they nicknamed one another) … in scenes of both lovemaking and furious confrontation, they verbally duel with each other, all the while making passionate love through their gorgeously exorbitant exchanges.
David Staller, who has dedicated two decades to all things Shavian, embodies George Bernard Shaw as no other actor could possibly approach, and the Tony Award-nominated Melissa Errico, acclaimed for her performance as Eliza Doolittle, consumes the role of Mrs. Patrick Campbell, who was herself Shaw’s original Eliza Doolittle in Pygmalion.
The Irish Repertory Theatre last produced DEAR LIAR in 1999. Directed by Charlotte Moore, it starred Marian Seldes, who won the Outer Critics Circle Award for her performance as Mrs. Pat and distinguished Irish actor Donal Donnelly as George Bernard Shaw.
By A.R. Gurney
Directed by Ciarán O’Reilly
Starring Matthew Broderick and Laura Benanti
Running from 30 May to 4 June 2023
A Pulitzer Prize finalist for Drama, A.R. Gurney’s LOVE LETTERS is a two-hander drama comprised of letters exchanged between two friends over a lifetime.
Andrew and Melissa, both born into wealth and position, begin their correspondence in childhood with birthday party thank-you notes. Their letters continue through their boarding school and college years while they are romantically attached and later through their individual marriages and careers. As the actors read the letters aloud, an evocative, touching, frequently funny, but always telling pair of character studies is revealed, where what is implied is as revealing and affecting as what is written down.
Directed by John Tillinger, LOVE LETTERS opened with Kathleen Turner and John Rubenstein on March 27, 1989, at the Off-Broadway Promenade Theatre, which ran for 64 performances. The play was performed only on Sunday and Monday evenings and changed its cast weekly. On October 31 of that same year, a production opened at the Edison Theatre on Broadway, where it ran for 96 performances. It opened with Colleen Dewhurst and Jason Robards. Other performers paired in the Broadway production included Lynn Redgrave and John Clark, Stockard Channing, and John Rubinstein, and Timothy Hutton and Elizabeth McGovern.
Tickets are available now to Irish Rep members, will go on sale to the public on March 30 and will be available at IrishRep.org. $25 tickets will be available to patrons under 40 years of age via Irish Rep’s GreenSeats membership.