Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Richard Thomas and Kristen Connolly Set for Old Globe Debut in OTHELLO

Richard Thomas. Photo by Lia Chang

Richard Thomas. Photo by Lia Chang

Emmy Award-winner Richard Thomas (“The Americans,” “The Waltons”) and Kristen Connolly (“House of Cards,” The Cabin in the Woods) will make their Old Globe debuts starring as Iago and Desdemona in Shakespeare’s classic tragedy Othello, the first show of the Globe’s 2014 Summer Shakespeare Festival. Both artists continue collaborations with Old Globe Artistic Director Barry Edelstein that began in New York: Thomas starred in Edelstein’s critically acclaimed production of Timon of Athens at The Public Theater in 2011, and Connolly in three Shakespeare plays that Edelstein helped produce at The Public. Additional casting will be announced at a later date.

From New York’s Shakespeare in the Park to Balboa Park, Artistic Director Barry Edelstein makes his outdoor directorial debut in The Old Globe’s Lowell Davies Festival Theatre with one of Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies. Despite the prejudices in Venice, the brilliant general Othello excels both on the battlefield and in the halls of state. But when he marries Desdemona, his envious lieutenant Iago sets in motion a diabolical plan to destroy him. Edelstein gives us a riveting, intense, and intimate production where poetry soars and swords clash, where true love and wrenching jealousy collide.

Performances run June 22 – July 27, with Opening Night on Saturday, June 28 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets to the Globe’s 2014 Summer Season are currently available by subscription only, and prices range from $92 to $332. Subscription packages may be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE, or by visiting the box office.

“Shakespeare’s plays demand actors with superb technical skills, deep emotional range, and great charisma,” said Edelstein. “Richard Thomas and Kristen Connolly have all three qualities in abundance. Audiences who know Richard from his iconic role in ‘The Waltons’ may not be aware that he is one of our country’s great stage actors with a long career in Shakespeare. He and I had a great time working on Shakespeare in 2011, and I’m thrilled to collaborate with him on what is perhaps the greatest villain in the Bard’s canon. Kristen is one of the most promising classical actresses of her generation whose imaginative response to Shakespeare’s ingénues dazzled audiences in New York. I know that The Old Globe’s audiences will love getting to know her, and I can’t wait to welcome her to San Diego.”

Richard Thomas (Iago) starred in the award-winning series “The Waltons,” for which he won an Emmy Award for Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series. He has continued to star in series, films, plays, and over 50 movies for television. His theatre career began at age seven with the 1958 Broadway production of Sunrise at Campobello and continued with such shows as Fifth of July, The Seagull, The Front Page, Tiny Alice, Peer Gynt, Richard II, Richard III, Hamlet, and The Stendhal Syndrome. His other stage credits include Broadway’s Democracy and A Naked Girl on the Appian Way, the national tour of the Broadway revival of 12 Angry Men, and Unusual Acts of Devotion by Terrence McNally. His recent projects include the Broadway production of David Mamet’s Race; the title role in The Public Theater’s Timon of Athens; Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays for the Minetta Lane Theatre; and the world premiere of Camp David at Arena Stage. He last appeared on Broadway in the Manhattan Theatre Club revival of An Enemy of the People. Thomas can currently be seen on the hit FX series “The Americans.” He also had starring roles on series such as “Just Cause,” “It’s a Miracle,” and “The Adventures of Swiss Family Robinson.” His television films include the Stephen King miniseries Nightmares & Dreamscapes, Stephen King’s It, All Quiet on the Western Front, The Silence, The Red Badge of Courage, The Master of Ballantrae, Johnny Belinda, Berlin Tunnel 21, Living Proof: The Hank Williams, Jr. Story, Hobson’s Choice, Roots: The Next Generations, Go Toward the Light, In the Name of the People, The Christmas Secret, The Miracle of the Cards, Beyond the Prairie: The True Story of Laura Ingalls Wilder, Anna’s Dream, Annie’s Point, Wild Hearts, and most recently Hallmark Channel’s film Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow. As a producer, Thomas has worked on such television projects as What Love Sees and For All Time. Thomas has appeared in such movies as The Wonder Boys, Battle Beyond the Stars, The Todd Killings, Last Summer, Winning, Red Sky at Morning, Ang Lee’s Taking Woodstock, and the forthcoming Anesthesia.

Kristen Connolly (Desdemona) recently completed shooting the NBC pilot “Tin Man,” written by Ehren Krueger and directed by D.J. Caruso. She also recently completed work on the History Channel miniseries Houdini opposite Adrien Brody. She is best known for playing the role of Christina Gallagher on the acclaimed Netflix series “House of Cards.” She was most recently seen on film in Lionsgate/MGM’s The Cabin in the Woods. Connolly’s other film credits include The Bay, The Happening, and Revolutionary Road. She has appeared Off Broadway in King Lear and the 2011 Shakespeare in the Park productions of All’s Well That Ends Well and Measure for Measure.

The creative team includes Wilson Chin (Scenic Design), Katherine Roth (Costume Design), Stephen Strawbridge (Lighting Design), Sten Severson (Sound Design), Curtis Moore (Original Music), Jan Gist (Vocal and Dialect Coach), Tara Rubin Casting (Casting), and Leila Knox (Stage Manager).

Old Globe Artistic Director Barry Edelstein (Director) is a stage director, producer, author, and educator. Widely recognized as one of the leading authorities on the works of Shakespeare in the United States, he has directed nearly half of the Bard’s works. He recently made his Globe directorial debut with Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale starring Billy Campbell, the first Shakespeare to be staged in our indoor theatre in over a decade. As Director of the Shakespeare Initiative at The Public Theater (2008-2012), he oversaw all of the company’s Shakespearean productions, as well as its extensive educational, community outreach, and artist-training programs. At The Public, Edelstein staged Julius Caesar starring Jeffrey Wright for Shakespeare in the Park and The Merchant of Venice featuring Ron Leibman’s Obie Award-winning portrayal of Shylock. He was also Associate Producer of The Public’s Broadway production of The Merchant of Venice starring Al Pacino. From 1998-2003 he was Artistic Director of Classic Stage Company, where he produced and directed some of New York’s most memorable classical productions. Edelstein’s Shakespearean directorial credits include The Winter’s Tale with David Strathairn, Timon of Athens with Richard Thomas, As You Like It with Gwyneth Paltrow, and Richard III with John Turturro. His additional credits include the Lucille Lortel Award-winning revival of Arthur Miller’s All My Sons; the world premiere of Steve Martin’s The Underpants, which he commissioned; Molière’s The Misanthrope starring Uma Thurman in her stage debut; and the world premiere of novelist Nathan Englander’s play The Twenty-Seventh Man. Edelstein has taught Shakespearean acting at The Juilliard School, NYU’s Graduate Acting Program, and the University of Southern California. His book Thinking Shakespeare (called by New York magazine “a must-read for actors”) was published in 2007 and is now the standard text on American Shakespearean acting. He is also the author of Bardisms: Shakespeare for All Occasions.

SEASON SUBSCRIPTIONS offer substantial savings with special subscriber benefits. Subscriptions can be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE [234-5623], or by visiting the box office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park. Subscriptions to the Globe’s 2014 Summer Season range from $92 to $332. Discounts are available for full-time students, patrons 29 years of age and younger, seniors, and groups of 10 or more.

Presented in the outdoor Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, the Old Globe 2014 Shakespeare Festival includes Shakespeare’s comedy The Two Gentlemen of Verona, directed by Globe alumnus and Tony Award nominee Mark Lamos (Compleat Female Stage Beauty, Pentecost, Resurrection Blues). The Summer Season will also feature Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Tony Award-winning musical Into the Woods, which made its World Premiere at The Old Globe in 1986, in an inventive reimagining by Fiasco Theater, directed by Noah Brody and Ben Steinfeld, in a production that originated at McCarter Theatre Center. Rounding out the season is Ronald Harwood’s comedy Quartet, directed by Richard Seer. Into the Woods will run on the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the Old Globe Theatre and Quartet in the Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, both part of the Globe’s Conrad Prebys Theatre Center. Tickets to the Globe’s 2014 Summer Season are currently available by subscription only, and prices range from $92 to $332. Subscription packages may be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE, or by visiting the box office.

Other articles on Othello:
utsandiego.com: Globe taps Richard Thomas for ‘Othello’
broadwayworld.com: Richard Thomas & Kristen Connolly Set for The Old Globe’s OTHELLO
sandiegocountynews.com: Richard Thomas Debut In Old Globe’s Othello
timesofsandiego.com: Old Globe Announces Stars of Othello to Kick Off Summer Shakespeare Festival

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Tony Award – winning Playwright Terrence McNally to be Honored at Westport Country Playhouse Annual Gala, September 24, 2012
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Photos: In Rehearsal with Director Bartlett Sher and the cast of Shinsai: Theaters for Japan

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Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia recently starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, Lorey Hayes, Marcus Naylor and Phynjuar, and made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York.  She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2014 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

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