UPDATED with Hamlet info, below.
Downton Abbey and Ragtime star Elizabeth McGovern will return to Broadway this fall, 27 years after playing Ophelia to Stephen Lang’s Hamlet. She’ll star in Time and the Conways, the first Broadway revival of the J.B. Priestly (An Inspector Calls) drama since its 1938 premiere following a London debut one year earlier. Rebecca Taichman (Tony nominee Indecent) will direct the Roundabout Theatre Company production, slated to begin performances September 14 at the American Airlines Theatre and to open October 10. The limited run will close November 26.
The play follows the fortunes of a well-to-do Yorkshire family, beginning in celebration at end of WWI, resuming 18 bitter years later and, finally, returning to opening scene’s night of festivities, with portents of what lies in store. The original production starred Dame Sybil Thorndike and, remarkable for the time, also was staged by a female director, Irene Hentschel. Later adaptations of the time-traveling play have starred Claire Bloom (for BBC television in 1985) and Harriet Walter (for BBC radio in 2014).
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McGovern earned Emmy and Golden Globe award nominations as the Countess of Grantham in Downton Abbey, and was an Oscar nominee for her performance as Evelyn Nesbit, “the girl in the red velvet swing” in Milos Forman’s film adaptation of E.L. Doctorow’s novel Ragtime. Her most recent films are Unexpected and The Commuter.
Other credits, including casting and design, will be announced shortly, per the Roundabout.
Speaking of Hamlet, Oscar Isaac’s further castmates in Sam Gold’s upcoming staging of the play at the Public Theater have been announced. Charlayne Woodard will play the Queen, Gertrude; Ritchie Coster is Claudius. Best friend Horatio will be played by Keegan-Michael Key; Peter Friedman is Polonius and his kids, Laertes and Ophelia, will be played by Anatol Yusef and Gayle Rankin. Roberta Colindrez and Matthew Saldívar play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, unless it’s the other way around.
David Zinn will design the set, with costumes by Kaye Voyce, lighting by Mark Barton, sound by Bray Poor and musical direction, composition, and performance by cellist Ernst Reijseger. The production is slated to begin previews June 20 and run through September 3, with an official press opening on Thursday, July 13.
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