Circle in the Square Theatre, (5/04/2004 - 8/22/2004)

First Preview: Apr 28, 2004
Opening Date: May 04, 2004
Closing Date: Aug 22, 2004
Total Previews: 6
Total Performances: 128

Category: Play, Drama, Original, Broadway

Opening Night Production Staff

Theatre Owned / Operated by Circle in the Square (under the direction of Theodore Mann and Paul Libin)

Produced by MCC Theater (Robert LuPone, Bernard Telsey, Artistic Directors; William Cantler, Associate Artistic Director; John G. Schultz, Executive Director), Harold Newman, Frederick Zollo, Nicholas Paleologos, Jeffrey Sine, Roy Gabay, Lorie Cowen Levy, Beth Smith, Peggy Hill, Thompson H. Rogers, Mort Swinsky, Michael Filerman, Ruth Hendel, Spring Sirkin, Marianne Mills, Jim Baldassare and Darren Bagert; Associate Producer: Edmund Fusco and Mary Fusco

Originally produced by MCC Theater (Robert LuPone, Bernard Telsey, Artistic Directors; William Cantler, Associate Artistic Director; John G. Schultz, Executive Director)

Written by Bryony Lavery; Incidental music by David Van Tieghem

Directed by Doug Hughes; Assistant Director: David Hilder

Scenic Design by Hugh Landwehr; Makeup and Tattoo Design: Angelina Avallone; Costume Design by Catherine Zuber; Lighting Design by Clifton Taylor; Sound Design by David Van Tieghem; Associate Sound Design: Jill B.C. Du Boff; Assistant Scenic Design: Timothy R. Mackabee; Assistant Costume Design: David Newell; Assistant Lighting Design: Eric Cornwell and Steve O'Shea

General Manager: Roy Gabay; Company Manager: Kim Sellon

Production Manager: B.D. White; Production Stage Manager: James FitzSimmons; Assistant Stage Mgr: Elizabeth Moloney and Neil Krasnow

Hanging Effects Designer: Paul Rubin and ZFX, Inc.

Fight direction by Rick Sordelet; Casting: Bernard Telsey Casting, Inc.; Press Representative: Boneau / Bryan-Brown; Dialect Coach: Stephen Gabis; Marketing: TMG - The Marketing Group; Photographer: Joan Marcus; Advertising: SPOTCo, Inc.

Opening Night Cast

Swoosie KurtzNancy
Brían F. O'ByrneRalph
Laila RobinsAgnetha
Sam KitchinGuard

Understudies: Drew McVety (Guard, Ralph) and Pippa Pearthree (Agnetha, Nancy)

Awards and Nominations

Tony Award®

 2004 Best Play [nominee] 

Written by Bryony Lavery; Produced by MCC Theater (Robert LuPone, Bernard Telsey, Artistic Directors; William Cantler, Associate Artistic Director; John G. Schultz, Executive Director), Frederick Zollo, Nicholas Paleologos, Jeffrey Sine, Roy Gabay, Lorie Cowen Levy, Beth Smith, Peggy Hill, Thompson H. Rogers, Mort Swinsky, Michael Filerman, Ruth Hendel, Spring Sirkin, Marianne Mills, Jim Baldassare and Darren Bagert

 2004 Best Actress in a Play [nominee] 

Swoosie Kurtz

winner 2004 Best Featured Actor in a Play [winner] 

Brían F. O'Byrne

 2004 Best Direction of a Play [nominee] 

Doug Hughes

Drama Desk Award

 2004 Outstanding Actor in a Play [nominee] 

Brían F. O'Byrne

Reviews


AP: "Frozen still engages the mind"

In its move to Broadway, "Frozen" still manages to engage the mind and chill the heart.

Bryony Lavery's disturbing drama about the disappearance and death of a 10-year-old English girl, Rhona Shirley, is almost clinical in its examination of the incident as it looks at the reactions of three people to her murder.

The MCC Theater production, which opened in March at a small off-Broadway house, has now transferred to Circle in the Square uptown where the same fine cast, headed by Swoosie Kurtz, Brian O'Byrne and Laila Robins, seems perfectly at home.

In fact, the acting could not be better, particularly O'Byrne, who portrays the serial killer with an icy self-confidence that scares and mesmerizes at the same time. It's a bravado that finally crumbles near the end of the evening in what is the play's most harrowing moment.

What's interesting is that the strongest character in the play is Nancy, the mother of the dead girl.

The woman is played by Kurtz with a dry-eyed, matter-of-factness that is all the more moving because of its lack of sentimentality.

Nancy takes us on a bleak journey - from the moment of her daughter's disappearance (the girl is on her way to grandma's with a pair of pruning shears), the agonizing wait for news and finally, years later, the discovery of the child's remains. How the mother deals with the death is surprising and, ultimately, very moving.

Much of this is spoken directly to the audience - much of the play is in monologue, soliloquies that are almost stylized in their presentation. Yet Lavery's language is affecting, despite the scientific nature of much of the material.

That brings us to the play's third major character, an American psychiatrist, played by Robins, who has come to England to lecture on the topic of "Serial Killing ... A Forgivable Act?"

The woman finds in Rhona's murderer an intriguing subject and tries to determine if there are physical reasons for his descent into evil. Their scenes together have the feel of a cautious boxing match, jabs and feints that reveal a lot about each of the characters.

"Frozen" is a well-made play in the best sense. It is thoughtful and dramatic, and helped immeasurably by Doug Hughes' spare, unfussy direction.

The lecturer calls herself a psychiatric explorer, looking at "The Arctic frozen sea that is ... the criminal brain." And "Frozen" makes for a memorable expedition.


AP
05/04/2005

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