The Broken Heart, a 1629 tragic-comic play written by John Ford (Tis Pity She's a Whore), directed by Selina Cartmell in her American debut is Theatre for a New Audience's fourth production of the 2011 - 2012 theatre season.
This, the Off Broadway premiere of The Broken Heart, will begin previews on Saturday, February 4, at 8:00pm for an opening Sunday, February 12, at 7:00pm for a run scheduled through Sunday, March 4, at The Duke on 42nd Street, a New 42ND Street® project, 229 West 42nd Street.
The Broken Heart will have scenery by Antje Ellermann, costumes by Susan Hilferty, lighting by Marcus Doshi, choreography by Annie-B Parson and original music by David Van Tieghem. The voice director is Andrew Wade and J. Allen Suddeth is the fight director.
About the show: "Though set in Sparta, the world of Ford's play more closely resembles the 17th century court of Charles II. The main plot engines: a young woman is forced to marry a ridiculously jealous codger; a cruel nobleman is bent on frustrating his sister's happiness; a princess tries to stand aloof from the emotional discord, but lives to feel love ruining her composure."
"This is not the only John Ford play in town this year," said Jeffrey Horowitz, the Founding Artistic Director of Theatre for a New Audience. "Cheek by Jowl's production of 'Tis Pity She's a Whore will bow at The Brooklyn Academy Of Music in March. It is the first time in New York theatre that two major productions of Ford are playing in the same season."
The Broken Heart will be directed by Selina Cartmell in her American debut. Ms. Cartmell calls The Broken Heart Ford's "most experimental play," pointing to its unique "black humor" and surprising twists on the revenge genre that steer the action to "places the audience never anticipates. It confronts timeless issues of sexual and gender relationships. The play is both ancient and modern – it's a world where dance, music and silence are interwoven seamlessly with the text, voice and character."
The Broken Heart was last seen in New York in an Off-Off Broadway production 30 years ago, and before that (not counting amateur productions) in Los Angeles in 1932.
Ms. Cartmell, a British artist living in Ireland, was the 2007 protégé to Julie Taymor as part of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. Ms. Cartmell has directed at the Royal Shakespeare Company (Marina Carr’s Cordelia’s Dream) and has been commissioned by The Abbey Theatre to create a new version of W.B. Yeats's Deidre. For her production of Medea, she was the Winner of the 2011 Irish Times Best Director Award.
The Acting Company are Bianca Amato (Broadway: Arcadia, The Coast of Utopia); Justin Blanchard (Theatre for a New Audience: Macbeth; Red Bull Theater: The Witch of Edmonton; Broadway: Journey's End); Annika Boras (Theatre for a New Audience: Lady Macbeth opposite John Douglas Thompson, Chair - Lucille Lortel nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress); Jacob Fishel (New York Shakespeare Festival: Titus Andronicus, Macbeth); Olwen Fouéré (leading roles at Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal National Theatre, The Gate Theatre and at the Abby Theatre Marina Carr's Woman and Scarecrow directed by Selina Cartmell); Philip Goodwin (Theatre for a New Audience: Henry VI – Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Performance, Cymbeline directed by Bartlett Sher; Troilus and Cressida directed by Sir Peter Hall; Broadway: Tartuffe, The Diary of Anne Frank, The School for Scandal); Ian Holcomb (Theatre for a New Audience: Macbeth); John Keating (Theatre for a New Audience: Measure for Measure; Atlantic Theater: The New York Idea); Robert Langdon Lloyd (Theatre for a New Audience: Othello, Measure for Measure, Macbeth; International: Mahabharata directed by Peter Brook and company member of the Royal Shakespeare Company); Tom Nelis (Theatre for a New Audience: The Merchant of Venice; Broadway: Enron; founding member, Siti Company); Saxon Palmer (Theatre for a New Audience: Macbeth, Ohio Stage Murders, The Jew of Malta, The Merchant of Venice); Margaret Loesser Robinson (Signature Theater, Ensemble Studio Theatre); and Andrew Weems (Theatre for a New Audience: Troilus and Cressida – 2001 Bayfield Award, Cymbeline – Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Featured Actor, The Green Bird both at Theatre for a New Audience and Broadway; Lincoln Center Theater: Blood and Gifts).