Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Illness Undermines Brooklyn-London Project - New York Times

Illness Undermines Hamlet and Tempest in Brooklyn-London Project

Illness has forced postponement of the Bridge Project, a joint venture involving the Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Old Vic theater company of London and the director Sam Mendes.

From January to March, the project, employing a company of British and American actors in performances of a double bill of classics at the Brooklyn Academy, the Old Vic and at least one international theater each year, was to have brought Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” and “Tempest” to New York. Both were to feature Stephen Dillane, who starred on Broadway in 2000 in the revival of Tom Stoppard’s “Real Thing.”

But an announcement from the Academy and the Old Vic said, “With great regret and due to personal reasons arising from family illness, Dillane has had to withdraw from the initial cycle of this three-year initiative.” As a result, the Bridge Project will open at the Brooklyn Academy in January 2009 with Shakespeare’s “Winter’s Tale” and Chekhov’s “Cherry Orchard,” after rehearsals beginning in New York in October 2008.

The productions will be directed by Mr. Mendes and star Simon Russell Beale as Leontes and Lopakhin.

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