James McAvoy to Make U.S. Stage Debut in 'Cyrano de Bergerac'

Marc Brenner
James McAvoy in 'Cyrano de Bergerac'

Jamie Lloyd's acclaimed London production, which scored five Olivier Award nominations including best actor and director, will play May 8-31 at the BAM Harvey Theater.

After years of regularly returning to the London stage between film jobs to continue his long-standing collaboration with director Jamie Lloyd, James McAvoy will finally cross the Atlantic in one of their critically lauded productions.

The Scottish actor will make his American stage debut in Lloyd's hit production of Cyrano de Bergerac, Edmond Rostand's classic 1897 verse drama about a proud French Army officer who sees his perceived lack of physical beauty as an impediment to courting the woman he loves. The play is being presented in a new version by Martin Crimp.

Reviewing the production in The Hollywood Reporter, critic Demetrios Matheou called it "dazzlingly inventive and entertaining." Of McAvoy's work in the title role, he wrote, "The actor never disappoints onstage, and this is a multifaceted, thrilling, deeply moving performance."

Both Lloyd and McAvoy received Olivier Award nominations for their latest collaboration, respectively as best director and best actor. The production, which concluded its limited engagement at the West End's Playhouse Theatre on Saturday, also earned noms for best revival, sound design and supporting actress Michele Austin.

Cyrano will play May 8-31 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Harvey Theater, with principal London cast including Anita-Joy Uwajeh as Roxanne and Eben Figueiredo as Christian accompanying the transfer. Tickets go on sale March 10 for BAM members and March 20 to the general public via BAM.org.

"This production is a visceral, bold and wholly exciting take on a classic," BAM artistic director David Binder said Tuesday in a statement. "I'm thrilled to welcome Jamie Lloyd and James McAvoy to BAM this spring and look forward to sharing this one-of-a-kind experience with our audiences."

Lloyd and McAvoy previously worked together on stage productions of The Ruling Class, Macbeth and Three Days of Rain.

Other starry London imports playing this season at BAM include Duncan Macmillan's two-hander about love in a time of climate change, Lungs, with former The Crown co-stars Claire Foy and Matt Smith making their U.S. stage debuts in a transfer running March 25-April 19; while actor/music artist/activist Riz Ahmed will bring his solo show The Long Goodbye, described by Pitchfork as "a compelling balance between hip-hop and agitprop," to a secret location to be disclosed only to ticket buyers for two nights, April 3-4.

Rose Byrne and Bobby Cannavale will conclude their run Sunday at BAM in director Simon Stone's contemporary update of Euripides' Medea.