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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 24th February 2014

Second Stage Theatre has announced its 12th Uptown Series at the McGinn/Cazale Theatre: Bess Wohl's American Hero, a dark comedy about life, liberty and the pursuit of sandwiches at a toasted subs franchise in a local mall, directed by Leigh Silverman, previewing from May 13th, opening on May 22nd; and Tanya Saracho's Mala Hierba, in which a trophy wife has to decide between the value of obligation and the price of freedom, directed by Jerry Ruiz, previewing from July 14th, opening on July 24th. The McGinn/Cazale Theatre is located 2162 Broadway, at 76th Street.

The Flea Theater will stage the premiere of The Mysteries, a radical retelling of the Bible in 50 episodes from The Fall of Lucifer to Judgment Day, conceived and directed by Ed Sylvanus Iskandar, written by 48 playwrights, including David Henry Hwang, Craig Lucas, Jeff Whitty, Bill Cain and Billy Porter, previewing from April 3rd, opening on April 20th. The idea takes inspiration from plays performed by craft guilds in the middle ages in Britain. The Flea Theater is located at 41 White Street, between Church and Broadway.

On The Casting Couch: Sutton Foster will be joined by Colin Donnell, Alexander Gemignani, Joshua Henry, Ben Davis, Annie Golden and Emerson Steele in the Brian Crawley-Jeanine Tesori musical Violet, opening at the American Airlines Theatre on April 20th; and John Aylward, Kristen Bush, Beth Dixon, Barbara Garrick, Jan Maxwell, Luke Niehaus, Kevin O'Rourke and Michael Simpson will feature in Anthony Giardina's The City Of Conversation, opening at the Mitzi E Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center on May 5th.

The Complete And Condensed Stage Directions Of Eugene O'Neill, Volume 2, in which the New York Neo-Futurists transform more of O'Neill's eloquent yet obsessive stage directions into physical comedy, adapted and directed by Christopher Loar, with Cecil Baldwin, Cara Francis, Roberta Colindrez, Christopher Borg and Dylan Marron, will play at Theater for the New City from April 17th. The Theater for the New City is located at 155 1st Avenue, between 9th and 10th Streets.

Theatre for a New Audience's forthcoming productions at the Polonsky Shakespeare Center will include William Shakespeare's King Lear, a study of age and rage, with Michael Pennington, Bianca Amato, Terry Doe, Mark H Dold, Lilly Englert, Jacob Fishel, Jake Horowitz, Robert Langdon Lloyd, Christopher McCann, Saxon Palmer, Rachel Pickup, Jon Stewart Jr, Timothy D Stickney, Chandler Williams and Graham Winton, directed by Arin Arbus, previewing from March 14th, opening on March 27th; and Eugene Ionesco's The Killer, in a new translation by Michael Feingold, in which a man discovers a 'radiant city' near his dismal urban home, only to find that it is stalked by a serial killer, with Michael Shannon, directed by Darko Tresnjak, from May 17th. The Polonsky Shakespeare Center is located at 262 Ashland Place in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.

Random Access Theatre's 2014 season will include Samara Weiss's Foreign Wars, a contemporary adaptation of Euripides's play about forbidden love, guilt and revenge, directed by Ashley Kelly Tata, from March 20th at Theatre 54 at Shetler Studios, located at 244 West 54th Street, between Broadway and 8th Avenue; William Shakespeare's The Taming Of the Shrew, the comedy detailing a tempestuous courtship, directed by Jennifer Sandella, from July 18th at Brooklyn Bridge Park; and Henrik Ibsen's Rosmersholm, adapted and edited by Katherine C McDonald, charting the struggle between freedom and the cruelty of conscience in an age of political division, as an aristocrat's brother in law plants doubts in his and his lover's minds, leading to a tragic conclusion, directed by Jennifer Sandella, from September 4th at The Old Stone House, located in Washington Park, 3rd Street at 5th Avenue, Brooklyn.

3-Legged Dog and Untitled Theater Company #61 will stage Vaclav Havel and Vladimir Moravek's The Pig, or Vaclav Havel's Hunt For The Pig, translated and adapted by Edward Einhorn, a theatrical-musical-technological-gastronomic experience, telling the story of Havel's search for a pig he can cook for a party with his dissident friends, with actor/singer/musicians Katherine Boynton, Melissa Elledge, John Gallop, Andrew Goldsworth, Jennifer Harder, Robert Honeywell, David Hov, Jenny Lee Mitchell, Mateo Moreno, Emily Shankman, Phoebe Silva, Moira Stone, Terence Stone, Michael A Whitney, Sandy York and Christopher Yustin, directed by Henry Akona, previewing from March 6th at 3LD Art and Technology Center, opening on March 10th. 3LD Art and Technology Center is located at 80 Greenwich Street, at Rector Street.

Metropolitan Playhouse will stage Gilbert Emery's The Hero, in which a prodigal son returns from the battlefields of the First World War, apparently a hero, but proves to be no more reliable than when he left, with Becca Ballenger, Kevin Bernard, Michael Fader, Casandera Lollar, Emily Jon Mitchell and Christian Rozakis, directed by Alex Roe, previewing from March 1st, opening on March 8th. Metropolitan Playhouse is located at 220 East 4th Street, between Avenues A and B.

The Rumour Machine says: that Glenn Close may star in Edward Albee's A Delicate Balance, in which the existence of upper-middle-class suburbanites, is disrupted by the appearance of lifelong family friends, directed by Simon McBurney, on Broadway next season, courtesy of producer Scott Rudin. The Rumour Machine grinds on.