Photo Flash: First Look at Wrenn Schmidt and More in Mint Theater's KATIE ROCHE
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by BWW News Desk
Mint Theater (Jonathan Bank, Artistic Director) is presenting the first-ever American Production of Katie Rocheby Teresa Deevy. The Mint production will run through March 24th only at their home (311 West 43rd Street). Opening Night is set for Monday, February 25th. Get a first look at the actors onstage in the photos below!
Katie Roche is the latest production of Mint's ambitious three-year project dedicated to the brilliant Teresa Deevy. Mint Theater Company has single-handedly put Deevy back onto the literary map with their acclaimed productions of Wife To James Whelan in 2010 and Temporal Powers in 2011. Katie Roche and the Deevy Project are supported in part by a $40,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Featured in the cast, directed by Mr. Bank, will be Margaret Daly, Patrick Fitzgerald, Jon Fletcher, David Friedlander, Jamie Jackson, John O'Creagh, and Fiana Toibin. The title role will be played by Wrenn Schmidt who currently appears as Julia Sagorsky opposite Jack Huston and Mark Borkowski in Season 3 of HBO's Emmy-nominated "Boardwalk Empire." Katie Roche will have set design by Vicki R. Davis, costume design by Martha Hally, lighting design by Nicole Pearce, sound design by Jane Shaw, and prop design by Joshua Yocum.
Katie is a servant girl of uncertain parentage. She is wild with ambition and dreams of finding something great to do. Teresa Deevy's drama takes you on Katie's journey as she struggles to find herself and her destiny. Originally produced by Ireland's Abbey Theatre in 1936, Katie Roche was included in the Gollancz Anthology of "Famous Plays of 1936" ("even though it cannot yet be called famous," wrote the editor in a preface) along with Clifford Odets' Awake and Sing. The Abbey chose Katie Roche to kick off their US tour in 1937 and in 1938 it was produced in London.
Teresa Deevy was born in 1894 as the youngest of thirteen children in Waterford, Ireland. Though she intended to teach, Teresa contracted Meniere's disease while at University College Dublin and lost her hearing. She went to London to study lip-reading and the theater provided her an opportunity to practice-there she discovered her calling. Despite obvious obstacles and years of rejection, Teresa eventually became a celebrated playwright. She had six plays produced at Ireland's National Theater, the Abbey, between the years 1930 and 1936. It was Katie Roche that solidified her place as Ireland's most important female dramatist since Lady Gregory. A servant girl whose mercurial ambitions reach for the heavens, Deevy's remarkable heroine introduced a study of feminine power with unprecedented subtlety and depth.
The Mint was awarded an OBIE for "combining the excitement of discovery with the richness of tradition," and a special Drama Desk Award for "unearthing, presenting and preserving forgotten plays of merit." It was recently nominated for the prestigious Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival for A Little Journey.
In February, Mint will also bring out Volume Two of Teresa Deevy Reclaimed, which will feature 12 short plays, many of which have never been published. On Saturday February 23rd, Mint will read two of these short plays, followed by a discussion with Professor Christopher Morash, Head of the Department of English at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. There will be a lunch with Morash before the readings and a dinner after, with several members of the Deevy family. On Sunday there will be a free screening of a video made of a performance of Wife to James Whelan.Photo Credit: Richard Termine