Carol Burnett, Candice Bergen, Anjelica Huston, Martin Sheen Set for 'Love Letters'
Carol Burnett, Alan Alda, Candice Bergen, Anjelica Huston, Martin Sheen, Brian Dennehy, Mia Farrow, Stacy Keach, and Diana Rigg will comprise rotating casts of the first Broadway revival of A.R. Gurney’s Love Letters.
The production, which is directed by two-time Tony winner Gregory Mosher, is set to begin performances on Sept. 13 for an official opening on Sept. 18 at the Nederlander Theatre.
“Gurney’s romantic, heart-breaking and somewhat autobiographical play has long been a favorite of mine,” producer Nelle Nugent said in a press statement. “I am so excited to have the chance to bring this landmark play back to Broadway featuring some of the greatest actors of our time.”
Nugent’s recent producing credits include the 2013 revival of The Trip to Bountiful starring Cicely Tyson and John Leguizamo’s 2011 one-man show Ghetto Klown. The producing team also includes James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli, whose theatrical credits include Once and A Steady Rain starring Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman; stage veteran Frederick Zollo, who produced Lucky Guy starring Tom Hanks and Orphans starring Alec Baldwin; and actress-producer Colleen Camp, who is making her Broadway producing debut with the show.
Love Letters, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, follows two friends who have written each other for more than 50 years and are now faced with the dilemma of whether they’ve made the right choices in their life. The show’s format doesn’t require the actors to memorize their lines, which allows for new castmembers to rotate in easily.
Dennehy and Farrow will open the show and appear through Oct. 10. Burnett will join Dennehy, and they will perform from Oct. 11 through Nov. 7. Alda and Bergen will take over on Nov. 8 and continue through Dec. 5. Keach and Rigg will come in on Dec. 6 and perform through Jan. 9, and Huston and Sheen will begin Jan. 10 and are scheduled to conclude the limited engagement on Feb. 1.
The two-character play had its first reading at the New York Public Library in 1988 with Gurney and Holland Taylor in the roles. It premiered later that same year in a production directed by John Tillinger at the Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven, Conn., with Joanna Gleason and John Rubenstein. The production transferred Off-Broadway in 1989 for 64 performances at the Promenade Theatre, where its rotating casts included Kathleen Turner, Rubinstein, Barbara Barrie, Philip Bosco, Stephen Collins, Victor Garber, Julie Harris, George Grizzard, Anthony Heald, George Hearn, Richard Kiley, Dana Ivey, William Hurt, Marsha Mason, Christopher Reeve, Taylor, George Segal, Christopher Walken, Joan Van Ark, Treat Williams and Frances Sternhagen.
The play moved to Broadway in October 1989, and featured Colleen Dewhurst, Jason Robards, Lynn Redgrave, John Clark, Stockard Channing, Rubinstein, Jane Curtin, Edward Hermann, Kate Nelligan, David Dukes, Polly Bergen, Robert Vaughn, Timothy Hutton, Elizabeth McGovern, Swoosie Kurtz, Richard Thomas, Elaine Stritch, Cliff Robertson, Nancy Marchand, Fritz Weaver, Robert Foxworth and Elizabeth Montgomery over the course of its 96 performances.
The play has been translated into 24 languages and has played in more than 40 countries.