New Tom Stoppard Play Among Lincoln Center Theater Fall Offerings


The Hard Problem, a new play by Arcadia playwright Tom Stoppard to be staged by his The Coast of Utopia director Jack O’Brien, will premiere next fall as a Lincoln Center Theater production.

The Stoppard play is one of two new Lincoln Center Theater productions announced today for the fall season. Also coming: Miranda Rose Hall’s Plot Points in Our Sexual Development, to be directed by Margot Bordelon.

Stoppard’s The Hard Problem begins previews Thursday, October 25 with an official opening on Monday, November 19 at Lincoln Center’s Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater. Hall’s Plot Points, a Lincoln Center Theater/LCT3 production, begins performances Saturday, October 6, opens Monday, October 22, and runs through Sunday, November 18 at the Claire Tow Theater.

The Hard Problem will feature Eshan Bay, Adelaide Clemens, Nina Grollman, Katie Beth Hall, Chris O’Shea, Tara Summers, and Karoline Xu, with additional casting to be announced. The production will feature sets by David Rockwell, costumes by Catherine Zuber, lighting by Japhy Weideman, sound by Jill BC Du Boff, and original music by Bob James.

The synopsis: Hilary (Clemens) is a young psychology researcher at the Krohl Institute for Brain Science where psychology and biology meet. If there is nothing but matter, what is consciousness? This is “the hard problem” facing science, and for Hilary the possibility of genuine altruism, without a hidden Darwinian self-interest, depends on the answer. Meanwhile she is nursing a private sorrow. She needs a miracle and is prepared to pray for one.

The production, supported by the Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater, is yet the latest in Stoppard’s long association with LCT, which has included Arcadia, Hapgood, The Invention of Love, and The Coast of Utopia.

Plot points of Plot Points: Theo (Jax Jackson) and Cecily (Marianne Rendon) want to be honest about their sexual histories, but what happens when telling the truth jeopardizes everything? A contemporary queer love story, Plot Points in Our Sexual Development explores gender, intimacy, and the dangers of revealing yourself to the person you love.

Sets will be by Andrew Boyce, costumes by Sarafina Bush, lighting by Jiyoun Chang, and sound by Brandon Wolcott. The play is a production of LCT and LCT3, the latter dedicated to work of new playwrights, directors and designers.

Hall is a playwright from Baltimore, and has developed her work with Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, Playwrights Realm, New York Theatre Workshop, and Baltimore Center Stage, among others. She is currently Resident Playwright and ensemble member with LubDub Theatre.

The two new productions join Lincoln Center Theater’s ongoing run of My Fair Lady. LCT also will be a co-producer of the Broadway-bound staging of Aaron Sorkin’s take on Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, to be directed by Bartlett Sher for performances beginning Thursday, November 1 at the Shubert Theatre.

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