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The Captain America actor will star opposite Michael Cera in Lobby Hero, written by Kenneth Lonergan. The Second Stage Theater production, directed by Trip Cullman, will reopen the Helen Hayes Theater in March 2018, kicking off the company’s inaugural Broadway season.
The 2001 play from the Oscar-winning Manchester by the Sea scribe explores what happens when emotions come in conflict with principles, and how choices under pressure define who we really are. It centers on a murder investigation in the lobby of a Manhattan apartment building, and traces the collisions of an ambitious young security guard, his stern boss, an intense rookie cop and her unpredictable partner.
Second Stage also announced that its first Broadway season will follow with Straight White Men, directed by Anna D. Shapiro and opening in July 2018. The play reunites a father and his three adult sons on Christmas Eve, when they are thrown off by a question that forces them to confront their own identities. Written by Obie-winner Young Jean Lee and previously seen in an acclaimed 2014 production at the Public Theater, the father-son comedy-drama makes Lee the first female Asian-American playwright ever to be produced on Broadway.
As part of Second Stage’s expansion, the company also will team with Los Angeles’ Center Theatre Group to co-commission a series of new American plays for Broadway under the Stage-2-Stage banner. That program will include works from Pulitzer winners Lynn Nottage and Paula Vogel, currently represented on Broadway with Sweat and Indecent, respectively; as well as Jon Robin Baitz (Other Desert Cities), Will Eno (The Realistic Joneses), Lisa Kron (Fun Home) and Lee.
Additional co-commissions for Broadway will include a new play from Bess Wohl (Small Mouth Sounds), in partnership with the Williamstown Theatre Festival, and new works from Lydia R. Diamond (Stick Fly) and Dominique Morrisseau (Skeleton Crew), being developed with Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theater.
The ambitious commissioning program emphasizes Second Stage’s mission to make the intimate Hayes Theatre a permanent home on Broadway for American plays. Renovation of the 104-year-old landmark building, which Second Stage purchased in 2015 after a long fund-raising campaign, is being overseen by David Rockwell.
“The Hayes will be dedicated to living American playwrights: no British imports, no Chekhov translations, no classics — just contemporary works that provoke, stimulate and challenge from the finest playwrights our country has to offer,” said Second Stage founder and artistic director Carole Rothman.
Second Stage has also announced the New York premiere of Tracy Letts’ Mary Page Marlowe in its longtime off-Broadway home, the Tony Kiser Theatre, where Letts’ Man From Nebraska recently wrapped a successful run. That production will open in June 2018. The company’s off-Broadway season will also include the previously announced revival of Harvey Fierstein’s Torch Song Trilogy, starring Michael Urie and directed by Moises Kaufman, which opens in September.
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