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Robert Falls directs Edward Gero and Patrick Andrews in this Chicago Premiere

 

Chicago, IL – Goodman Theatre’s 2011/2012 Season comes to life with Red, John Logan’s “sizzling, intellectually thrilling” (Chicago Tribune) journey into the mind of Abstract Expressionist Mark Rothko. Goodman Theatre Artistic Director Robert Falls helms this Chicago premiere and first major original American production of Red, featuring Edward Gero as Rothko and Chicago’s own Patrick Andrews as Ken, his young assistant. Logan’s six-time Tony Award-winning play has quickly become among the most acclaimed dramas of the past decade, critically hailed in London and on Broadway as an “electrifying play of ideas” (Variety) and an “engrossing, often enthralling new play about art, an artist and the act of creation” (Associated Press). Red begins previews September 17 (Opening Night is September 27) and runs through October 23, 2011, in the Goodman’s Albert Theatre; tickets are $25 – $84 (prices

are subject to change). ComEd is the Official Lighting Sponsor, Katten Muchin Rosenman is the major corporate sponsor, Abbott Fund and BNY Mellon Wealth Management are corporate sponsor partners.

“It’s an enormous pleasure to welcome John Logan back to the city where he launched his distinguished career,” said Artistic Director Robert Falls. “I have enjoyed a personal and professional friendship with John since our collaboration on Riverview: A Melodrama with Music more than 20 years ago. It is with great pride that we begin our 2011/2012 Season with his extraordinarily passionate and moving work.”

John Logan began his playwrighting career in Chicago after graduating from Northwestern University. He has authored of more than a dozen plays, including Never the Sinner and Hauptmann, as well as a successful screenwriter with film credits including Gladiator, The Aviator (both nominated for an Academy Award) and Sweeney

Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.

“I always knew I wanted the first major original American production of Red to take place in Chicago, the city where I was ‘Ken’—an aspiring artist just starting out in a thrilling time of talent and opportunity,” said Logan. “Bob Falls’ muscularity as a director, to me, parallels Rothko’s muscularity as an artist and man. Bob is so profoundly moved by

art—theatrical art, visual art, literary art—there was never a question that he was the director for this production.”

“There is only one thing in life I fear, my friend…one day the black will swallow the red” (Mark Rothko). Red is a snapshot of the enigmatic and conflicted painter (portrayed by Edward Gero) and his personal and generational struggles at a seminal moment in his career: his 1958 commission to create a series of murals for New York’s upscale Four Seasons restaurant in the Seagram Building. While Rothko was exhilarated by the free reign given by his commissioners, he faced a number of challenges—including a prospective audience that he had professed to scorn. This emotionally and creatively charged event is the basis for Red, in which Logan pairs Rothko with Ken (Patrick Andrews), a fictitious young assistant and aspiring artist who must choose between appeasing his mentor and changing the course of art history.

Widely considered one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century, Mark Rothko was an Abstract Expressionist painter and a fiercely intellectual art theorist. “I think of my pictures as dramas; the shapes in the pictures are the performers,” said Rothko. “Like actors, the shapes create and resolve tension, bringing a painting equilibrium in the same way that a novelist or playwright sets characters in motion and eventually offers resolution.”A Jewish immigrant from Dvinsk, Russia, Rothko constantly battled feelings of ostracism and rejection; even at the height of his career, he feared that critics, curators and the public misunderstood his work. When Logan first encountered Rothko’s Seagram-commissioned murals at the Tate Modern in London, he was struck by the strong energy he felt while viewing the bold canvases and intrigued that the murals were never displayed in the Four Seasons restaurant. “Studying Rothko and learning about his technique was like learning a new language for me— the language of visual art,” said Logan, who applied that language to the characters of Rothko and Ken in Red. “I think audiences respond to the flamboyant grandeur and intensity of the character, but what really moves them is the father-son relationship between these two men. To me the play is really not about art or painting at all; it’s about fathers and sons.”

Set Designer Todd Rosenthal transforms the Albert stage into Rothko’s Bowery Manhattan studio, while Sound Designer Richard Woodbury creates original music and sounds to transport the audience to 1958. Other members of the creative team include Costume Designer Birgit Rattenborg Wise, Lighting Designer Keith Parham, Dramaturg

Neena Arndt, Production Stage Manager Joseph Drummond and Stage Manager T. Paul Lynch.

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater will remount the Goodman’s production of Red in Washington, D.C., January 20 – March 11, 2012; visit ArenaStage.org for details.

Insider Access Public Programs for Red

Insider Access is a series of public programs that provides insight into the Goodman’s artistic process. With Artist Encounters, audiences meet the names and faces behind the work on stage, including playwrights and directors. Context offers a deeper exploration of the social issues related to Goodman productions. PlayBacks take place directly after selected performances.

Excerpts From Red at The Art Institute of Chicago

Featuring company members of Red |Moderated by Steve Scott

Thursday, September 15; 6–7pm | Art Institute of Chicago, Fullerton Hall Free

Goodman Theatre’s Associate Producer Steve Scott and members of the company of Red present scenes from the play and discuss the influential work of Rothko at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Artist Encounter: Red

Featuring Artistic Director Robert Falls Wednesday, September 21; 6 – 7pm | Goodman Theatre’s Healy Rehearsal Room $5 General admission; free to Subscribes, students with ID and Goodman donors; Call 312.443.3800

Artistic Director Robert Falls discusses the life and work of legendary Rothko with select members of Chicago’s visual arts community during an Artist Encounter prior to a 7:30pm performance.

Shades of Red Featuring Actor Edward Gero

Thursday, September, 22; 6pm Pre-Show event, 7:30pm performance of Red | Goodman Theatre

Tickets are only $49 for the reception and the play. Use promo code ARTIST for tickets at GoodmanTheatre.org or call 312.443.3800. Goodman Theatre invites Chicago artists for a very special event featuring the Tony-Award-winning play Red where they will get a glimpse into the life of brilliant Abstract Expressionist painter Mark Rothko. Before the show, you’ll meet acclaimed actor Edward Gero, who will discuss his preparation for the lead role of Rothko. A selection of red wines and artful hors d’oeuvres will be served.

Context: Red and New Stages Amplified: The Price of Fame

Featuring artists associated with Red and New Stages Amplified

Monday, October 10, 2011; 7pm | Goodman Theatre Lobby

An interactive experience created by the Goodman and Collaboraction Theater that examines the cost of fame and what happens when artists become commodities. Featuring music critics Jim DeRogatis and Gred Cott and Founder and Director of iO Theater, Charna Halpern.

PlayBack: Red

Following each Wednesday and Thursday performance of Red, Albert Theater audiences are invited to attend free post-show discussions with members of the artistic staff.

Tickets to Red ($25 – $84) are currently on sale at GoodmanTheatre.org. Tickets and subscriptions can also be purchased at the box office (170 North Dearborn) or by phone at 312.443.3800. Mezztix are half-price mezzanine tickets available at 12 noon at the box office, and at 10am online (promo code MEZZTIX) day of performance; Mezztix are not available by telephone. 10Tix are $10 rear mezzanine tickets for students available at 12 noon at the box office, and at 10am online on the day of performance; 10Tix are not available by telephone; a valid student I.D. must be presented when picking up the tickets; limit four per student with I.D. All tickets are subject to availability and handling fees apply. Discounted Group Tickets for 10 persons or more are available at 312.443.3820. Purchase Goodman Gift Certificates in any amount at GoodmanTheatre.org. The flexibility of Goodman Gift Certificates allows recipients to choose the production, date and time of their performance. Artists, dates and ticket prices are subject to change.

About Goodman Theatre

The 2011/2012 Season includes: New Stages Amplified including Dartmoor Prison by Carlyle Brown, directed by Chay Yew (October 13 – 23), Chicago Boys by Kathleen Tolan, directed by Ann Filmer (October 27 – November 6) and Ask Aunt Susan by Seth Bockley, directed by Joanie Schultz (November 10 – 20); The 34th annual production of A Christmas Carol (November 18 – December 31, 2011); Race by David Mamet, directed by Chuck Smith (January 14 – February 19, 2012); The Convert by Danai Gurira, directed by Emily Mann and co-produced with McCarter Theatre (NJ) and Center Theatre Group (CA) (February 25 – March 25, 2012); Camino Real by Tennessee Williams, directed by Calixto Bieito (March 3 – April 8, 2012); Fish Men by Cándido Tirado, directed by Edward Torres, in partnership with Teatro Vista (April 7 – May 6, 2012); The Iceman Cometh by Eugene O’Neill, directed by Robert Falls (April 21 – June 10, 2012); and Crowns, written and directed by Regina Taylor (June 30 – August 5, 2012).

Goodman Theatre, “the leading regional theater in the nation’s most important theater city” (Time), is a major cultural, educational and economic pillar in Chicago, generating nearly $300 million in economic impact over the past decade in its state-of-the-art two-theater complex on North Dearborn Street. Founded in 1925 and currently under the leadership of Artistic Director Robert Falls, “Chicago’s most essential director” (Chicago Tribune), and Executive Director Roche Schulfer, Chicago’s oldest and largest not-for-profit resident theater has welcomed nearly two million patrons to productions and events—including 10 festivals celebrating playwrights such as David Mamet,

August Wilson and Horton Foote, as well as the biennial Latino Theatre Festival—and served legions of students through its Education and Community Engagement programs (including the FREE Student Subscription Series and other interactive programs). The Goodman has earned more than 90 awards for hundreds of productions, including the Pulitzer Prize for Ruined by Lynn Nottage—one of 25 new-work Goodman commissions in the last decade. The Chairman of Goodman Theatre’s Board of Trustees is Patricia Cox and the President and Chair-Elect for the 2011/2012 Season is Ruth Ann M. Gillis. Joan Clifford is President of the Women’s Board. American Airlines is the Exclusive Airline of Goodman Theatre.

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