I REMEMBER MAMA
June 4, 2016 - June 26, 2016
Directed by Jack Cummings III
Joan and Robert Rechnitz Theater
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"masterful production" --The Huffington Post
"A 'Mama' to remember" --Scene on Stage
"something marvelous happens when these women inhabit their roles" --The New York Times
"will make you want to call your mom" --The Star-Ledger
"spectacular" --the triCity News
10 women. 25 roles. 1 family. An American classic reborn. Ten veteran powerhouse actresses (led by Barbara Andres) will perform all 25 roles in this beloved classic about a working-class Norwegian family in turn-of-the-century San Francisco. Celebrated as one of the 10 best theater productions of 2014 in The New York Times and praised as “brilliant…transcendent… magical…a gift and a miracle” by Hilton Als of The New Yorker, Director Jack Cummings III’s production of I Remember Mama is truly one to warm the spirit.
This version of I Remember Mama was originally developed and produced by Transport Group Theatre Company, New York, NY.
Jack Cummings III, Artistic Director Lori Fineman, Executive Director
Barbara Andres (Mama) feels blessed to recreate her role of Mama from the 2014 critically acclaimed Transport Group production of I Remember Mama, for which she received a Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress. Born-in-a-trunk to the musical comedy team, Masters and Rollins, she began touring with them at three weeks of age. Her Broadway career started in the 1969 musical, Jimmy, followed by The Boy Friend, Rodgers & Hart, Rex, On Golden Pond, Doonesbury, Kiss of the Spider Woman, A Delicate Balance, and Cabaret. She continued as Fraulein Schneider in the National Tour of Cabaret (L.A. Ovation and Joseph Jefferson Award nominations for Best Featured Actress), giving her final performances in Tokyo. Off-Broadway she has been featured at Roundabout, Lincoln Center, Manhattan Theatre Club, Signature Theatre, Public Theater, Naked Angels, and Transport Group, where she starred as Emily in their innovative production of Our Town, also directed by Jack Cummings III. Across America from The Guthrie Theater to Arena Stage, from American Repertory Theatre to McCarter Theatre, she has appeared in a wide range of roles from Sister Aloysius in Doubt to Martha in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. Other favorite ladies are: Linda (Death of a Salesman), Lyubov Ranevskaya (The Cherry Orchard), Mama Rose (Gypsy), Desiree (A Little Night Music), Candida (Candida), Goneril (King Lear), and Joanne (Company). Ms. Andres has guest-starred on all three Law & Orders, as well as Gossip Girls, Damages, Rescue Me, All My Children, As the World Turns, and The Sopranos. Her films include What About Bob?, After the Storm, Random Hearts, and Thirteen Conversations About One Thing. The sometime mother of Glenn Close, Jodie Foster, Annette Bening, Kate Burton, John Rubinstein, Laila Robins, Howard McGillan, Grant Shaud, Roma Downey, and Barbara Barrie, she is the real-life grandmother of Maddie, Keala, Aubree, Daniel, Annie Rose, Lily, Griffin, and Gracie. She and her husband Andy will soon celebrate their 57th wedding anniversary.
Aunt Jenny, Bell Boy, Madeline
Alice Cannon (Aunt Jenny, Madeline, Bell Boy) Broadway: James Joyce’s The Dead (Helen Hayes Award), Company (Original Cast), Fiddler on the Roof. Off-Broadway: Significant Other (Roundabout Theatre), I Remember Mama, All the Way Home (Transport Group), The General from America (Richard Nelson writer/director), Mr. Pim Passes By (Mint Theater Company). Regional: The Road to Mecca (Best Actress Award, Raleigh, NC), 4000 Miles (Hudson Stage), Angels in America (Connecticut Repertory). Film: The Producers, Morris County, Jewish Girls Are Easy (Independent). TV: Difficult People (Hulu).
Uncle Chris, Mr. Hyde
Lynn Cohen (Mr. Hyde, Uncle Chris) Selected NY theater: I Remember Mama (Transport Group/Lucille Lortel Award nomination); Big Love (Signature Theatre); Macbeth (Delacorte); Ivanov (LCT/Broadway): Chasing Manet, The Model Apartment (Primary Stages); Hamlet (Public Theater); Orpheus Descending (Broadway); The Devils (NYTW); Uncle Vanya (Andre Gregory production). Regional: Guthrie, Hartford Stage, A.R.T., Yale Rep, Huntington, Williamstown, Long Wharf, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Barrington Stage. Selected Film/TV: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire; Munich; The Cobbler; They Came Together; Eagle Eye: Manhattan Murder Mystery; Vanya on 42nd Street; Getting On; Sex and the City (TV/movies); Chicago Med; recurring on The Affair, Damages, Nurse Jackie, and Law & Order. Awards: New Dramatists’ Bowden Award; Fox Fellow; Lilly Award; AEA Richard Seff Award.
Aunt Trina, Soda Jerk
Rita Gardner (Aunt Trina, Soda Jerk) has had a long career on and Off-Broadway. She is best known for originating the role of The Girl in the in the longest-running musical of all time, The Fantasticks. Broadway credits: A Family Affair, Ben Franklin in Paris, 1776, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, The Wedding Singer. Off-Broadway: Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well…, Steel Magnolias, Wings. Other theatrical credits: A. R. Gurney’s The Snowball, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Gingerbread Lady, Side by Side by Sondheim, 4000 Miles, and the national tour of Kiss of the Spider Woman. Ms. Gardner appeared in the very successful run of the Transport Group’s production of I Remember Mama. Select film credits: The Good Student, Super Heroes, P.S. I Love You (with Hilary Swank), and Tiger Lily Road. Television work includes roles on 30 Rock, all of the Law & Order series, and the new series on Bravo, Odd Mom Out. Her one-woman show—Try to Remember: A Look Back at Off-Broadway—has toured nationally, and the CD is available on Amazon.com. Her new one-woman show Much More: A Songbook of Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt will premiere in the fall.
Dagmar, Jessie, 1st Nurse
Marjorie Johnson (Dagmar, Jessie, 1st Nurse) last appeared in Dot at the Vineyard Theatre. Broadway: The Little Foxes (Vivian Beaumont Theatre). Off-Broadway: Hoodoo Love (Cherry Lane Theatre, Audelco Award for Best Supporting Actress), The House of Bernarda Alba (Pearl Theatre Company). Regional: To Kill a Mockingbird (Paper Mill Playhouse and Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey), Fences (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), Having Our Say (Triad Stage), The Skin of Our Teeth (Delaware Theatre Company, Philadelphia Critics Award nomination), Death of a Salesman (New Stage Theatre), Bloodline (Hangar Theatre), The Old Settler (Buffalo Studio Arena). Off-Off Broadway: M: The Mandela Saga (Theatre for the New City, Lead Actress Audelco Award). International: The Pen and the Podium (Edinburgh Festival in Scotland). Film: American Gangster, Boiler Room, Life Breath, Hill and Gully, Fleecing Led Zeppelin. TV: Nurse Jackie, The Affair, The Leftovers, Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, The 22.
Mia Katigbak (Katrin) has acted in NYC with NAATCO (Obie Award for Awake and Sing!); Bushwick Starr (Clare Barron’s I’ll Never Love Again); Women’s Project (Dear Elizabeth by Sarah Ruhl); New York Theatre Workshop (Ivo van Hove’s Scenes from a Marriage); The Foundry (Good Person of Szechwan, also at The Public); Soho Rep (Washeteria); and with New Georges, Clubbed Thumb, Ma-Yi, Target Margin, Theater Mitu, Intar, The Civilians, Pan Asian Rep. Regional: Berkeley Rep (CA), Swine Palace (LA), and The Guthrie (MN). International: Manila, Philippines, and Abu Dhabi, UAE. TV: Drew, The Family, Chicago P.D., Mysteries of Laura. Film: I Smile Back, Clutter, Slow Jam King. She is the Artistic Producing Director and co-founder of NAATCO (National Asian American Theatre Co). Awards: the 2016 Lilly; 2012-13 Lucille Lortel and the 2008 Lee Reynolds Awards (League of Professional Theatre Women); Actors’ Equity Rosetta LeNoire Award, in recognition of her “artistic contribution to the universality of the human experience in the American theater.” She is a founding director of CAATA (Consortium of Asian American Theaters & Artists). She was one of the organizers of the 1st and 2nd National Asian American Theater Festivals in 2007 and 2009 in New York City. She holds a BA from Barnard College and an MA from Columbia University.
Aunt Sigrid, 2nd Nurse, Dorothy
Susan Lehman (Aunt Sigrid, 2nd Nurse, Dorothy) became a member of the Actors’ Equity Union in 1961 and has been working in the performing arts ever since. Her first Broadway show was in 1962 in I Can Get It for You Wholesale as ensemble and understudying Barbra Streisand and Bambi Linn. Other Broadway work included The Prisoner of Second Avenue and Show Me Where the Good Times Are. Susan played Tzeitel in the First National Company of Fiddler on the Roof (was married 410 times). She played Mrs. McIllehenny in City Center’s Encores! production of 70, Girls, 70. She has appeared in the Drama Desk-nominated productions for best play, Falling (2012), and best revival, Transport Group’s I Remember Mama (2014). Other Off-Broadway productions include Transport Group’s Crossing Brooklyn as Olive, Maude in the musical of Harold and Maude and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty as Mitty’s Mother-in-Law. Roles on Soaps: All My Children, Ryan’s Hope, and As the World Turns. A “Gentle Folk” senior dancer in the Disney film, Enchanted, she appeared on 2008 Academy Awards for an Enchanted nominated song, “That’s How You Know.” Lead/support roles in over 40 plays and musicals including Fanny in Funny Girl, Babe in The Pajama Game, Carrie in Carousel, Marian in The Music Man, Winnifred in Once Upon a Mattress, Annie in Annie Get Your Gun, Mammy Yokum in Li’l Abner, Smitty in How to Succeed, Irma in Irma La Douce, Reno in Anything Goes, Meg in Brigadoon, Jack’s Mum in Into the Woods. Sang and danced in many revues and cabaret all over the USA. Directed projects in NYC for Circle Rep, Women’s Project, Women’s Interart, HB Playwrights Foundation, Capital Rep in Albany, Allenberry Playhouse in PA. Trained to direct and directed on All My Children (ABC) and Texas (NBC). Studied directing with Mike Nichols and Herbert Berghof. Studied acting with Alvina Krause at Northwestern University and Uta Hagen and Austin Pendleton at the HB Studio. BS in Theater (now Communications) at Northwestern University. Susan also works professionally as a Broadway usher where she gets paid to see a show and tell people where to go.
Heather Mac Rae
Mr. Thorkelson, Nels
Heather Mac Rae (Mr. Thorkelson, Nels) is very proud and happy to be part of the Mama family once again, after having appeared in the highly acclaimed Transport Group production of I Remember Mama in 2014. Her Broadway credits include: Sheila in Hair (original Broadway production); Abra in Here’s Where I Belong (Broadway debut); Faith in Coastal Disturbances; Dr. Charlotte in Falsettos; the Caterer in A Catered Affair. She appeared as Cookie in the national tour of Rumors, and also in the Falsettos national tour. She played Mary Magdalene in the LA production of Jesus Christ Superstar and appeared in the Miami production of Hair for more than a year. Other theatrical credits: Mary in Merrily We Roll Along (La Jolla Playhouse), Heather in I'm Getting My Act Together... ( Kansas City and Geva Theatre). Last year Heather was part of an extraordinary event, Hair Retrospection, at Kansas City Rep. Directed by Eric Rosen, it featured six members of the original Broadway production sharing their stories and experiences of being part of this amazing show during such an incredible historical time. Off-Broadway: Falsettoland, Anne of Green Gables, Abie’s Island Rose, Emily, Coastal Disturbances, and The Hot L Baltimore. Regional: Vanities, Children, The Dining Room, Oliver, Sabrina Fair, and A Christmas Carol. Films include: The Namesake, Life with Mikey, A Perfect Couple (directed by Robert Altman), Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex..... (directed by Woody Allen), and Bang the Drum Slowly. TV: The Big C, Sex and the City, The Sopranos, Law & Order: SVU, Frasier, One Life to Live, and Clarissa Explains It All. Ms. Mac Rae has appeared in clubs and concerts throughout the country since 1980. She won a MAC and a Bistro Award for her critically acclaimed solo show, Songs for My Father (a tribute to her father, Gordon Mac Rae). Her recordings include: Songs for My Father (Harbinger Records); I Choose Love (LML Music); Falsettoland (DGR); A…My Name Will Always Be Alice (DGR); and I Love New York.
Christine, FD Moorhead
Louise Sorel (Christine, F.D. Moorhead) was in the Transport Group production of I Remember Mama in 2014. She began her career on Broadway in Take Her, She’s Mine starring Art Carney. She moved between films and theater in London co-starring in The Party’s Over with Oliver Reed and then with Charles Boyer on the West End and in New York in Terence Rattigan’s Man and Boy. She followed with Lorraine Hansberry’s The Sign in Sydney Brustein’s Window, Lorenzo with Alfred Drake, Ann in The Cocktail Hour by A.R. Gurney with Estelle Parsons, Special Occasions by Bernard Slade, Not with My Wife at the Westport Country Playhouse, The Lion in Winter with George C. Scott, and in between was guest starring in Hollywood, her hometown, on major television networks. She studied at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York and has continued to work in the theater through her career. Recently she spent time as a comedic villainess on both Santa Barbara and Days of Our Lives. She considers herself a New Yorker even though she grew up in the Hollywood film world. Other film credits include Plaza Suite, Crimes of Passion (dir. Ken Russell), B.S. I Love You, Where the Boys Are, Mark of Zorro with Frank Langella. Her role on the original Star Trek continues to surprise her, as a long time memory for fans. Louise is an inveterate traveler and can’t resist any animal, be it large or small. She received five Soap Opera Digest Awards, a Los Angeles Dramalogue nomination for The Perfect Ganesh by Terence McNally at the Odyssey Theatre, and a Best Performance nomination for Lovely at the Santa Monica Playhouse.
Papa, Arne, Dr. Johnson
Dale Soules (Papa, Dr. Johnson, Arne) most recently co-starred with Patti LuPone and Michael Urie in Shows for Days at Lincoln Center Theater. Her Broadway credits include: Hands on a Hardbody, Grey Gardens, The Crucible, The Magic Show (introducing Stephen Schwartz’s songs “Lion Tamer” and “West End Avenue”), Whose Life Is It Anyway?, Dude, and her debut in the groundbreaking Hair. Her Off-Broadway, regional, national and international work is extensive including: Posterity, The Water Engine, and The Joy of Going Somewhere Definite (Atlantic Theater Company), 2014’s award-winning Transport Group production of I Remember Mama (all women over 65), Marsha Norman’s Getting Out, Candide (Guthrie), All’s Well That Ends Well (Yale Rep), ‘Maid (Directors Lab Lincoln Center Festival). Her television work includes: Unforgettable, Law & Order, American Playhouse, Sesame Street, Maurice Sendak’s Really Rosie. Her most recent feature film AWOL premiered in the Tribeca Film Festival in April 2016. Awards include two SAG Awards (for her ensemble work on Orange Is the New Black seasons two and three as Frieda), and the New Dramatists’ Charles Bowden Award for her dedication to new work and extraordinary contribution to theater. www.dalesoules.com
John van Druten
John van Druten (Playwright) was born in 1901 in London, England. His first successful play was Young Woodley, produced in 1928. His best-known plays include Old Acquaintance (1940), The Voice of the Turtle (1943), I Remember Mama (1944), Bell, Book and Candle (1950), and I Am a Camera (1951). After several years and considerable success in the U.S., he became an American citizen in 1944. He passed away in 1957.
Jack Cummings III
Jack Cummings III (Director) is the Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Transport Group Theatre Company. Favorite TG credits include Queen of the Mist by Michael John LaChiusa (world premiere), See Rocky City & Other Destinations by Brad Alexander and Adam Mathias (New York premiere), The Audience (conceiver, world premiere), cul-de-sac by John Cariani (world premiere), Normal by Yvonne Adrian, Tom Kochan, and Cheryl Stern (world premiere), Marcy in the Galaxy by Nancy Shayne (world premiere), Three Days to See (author/conceiver, word premiere), as well as revivals of Hello Again; First Lady Suite; Once Upon a Mattress; Almost, Maine; The Dark at the Top of the Stairs; The Boys in the Band; All the Way Home; and Our Town. Other New York credits include the world premiere of Terrence McNally’s And Away We Go for the Pearl Theatre Company, 1,000 Words Come to Mind by Michele Lowe and Scott Richards (Inner Voices, world premiere), and Arlington by Polly Pen and Victor Lodato (Inner Voices, world premiere). Regional credits include A Streetcar Named Desire (Gretna Playhouse, PA), Violet and The Young Man from Atlanta (Barksdale Theatre, VA), and The Illusion (Nevada Theatre Company). He received his B.A. in International Relations from The College of William and Mary and his M.F.A. in Directing from The University of Virginia. He is married to actress Barbara Walsh. He dedicates his work on I Remember Mama to his mother, Lily K. Cummings.
Dane Laffrey (Scenic Designer) at Two River: My Wonderful Day (costumes) and Be More Chill (set). Broadway: set and costumes for Deaf West’s Spring Awakening, set for Fool for Love. Recent Off-Broadway credits include set and/or costumes for Iowa, The Christians and Indian Summer (Playwrights Horizons), Cloud Nine (Atlantic Theater Company), The Glory of the World (BAM Harvey), Bad Jews and Tigers Be Still (Roundabout), Disgraced (Lincoln Center), Arlington (Vineyard), King Liz, American Hero and The Talls (Second Stage), The Maids (Red Bull), I Remember Mama and The Patsy (Transport Group), The Few (Rattlestick). Regional work at the Humana Festival, Mark Taper Forum, Williamstown, Old Globe, Huntington, Denver Center, Deaf West, Goodspeed, Center Stage, Dallas Theater Center, New York Stage & Film, The Studio, Signature, others. International work in Tokyo, Oslo, Osaka, and throughout Australia. Nominations for a Drama Desk Award and four Henry Hewes Awards. www.danelaffrey.com
Kathryn Rohe (Costume Designer) is thrilled to be joining Two River Theater for the first time, via director Jack Cummings III, with whom she has worked closely for over 20 years. The home of their lengthy collaboration is the award-winning Off-Broadway company, Transport Group, where Cummings is Co-Founder and Artistic Director. Kathryn has designed 18 productions for Transport Group, four of which were recorded by the New York Public Library of the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center—Almost, Maine (2014), Queen of the Mist (2011), Bury the Dead (2008), and First Lady Suite (2004). In addition, she has designed eight world premieres, including Terence McNally’s And Away We Go (for the Pearl Theatre, 2013), and Michael John LaChiusa’s Queen of the Mist (TG, 2011). Other regional theater design includes the Illinois Shakespeare Festival (Bloomington, IL), the Hippodrome (Gainesville, FL), the Clarence Brown (Knoxville, TN), the Drury Lane (Chicago), and Ball State University (Muncie, IN). Kathryn is a proud member of both United Scenic Artists and the Theatrical Wardrobe Union.
R. Lee Kennedy
R. Lee Kennedy (Lighting Designer) Off-Broadway: Transport Group: Once Upon a Mattress; Three Days to See; I Remember Mama (Henry Hewes Design Award nomination); Almost, Maine; Queen of the Mist (Henry Hewes Design Award nomination); Hello Again; See Rock City (Drama Desk nomination), Bury the Dead (Drama Desk nomination); Marcy in the Galaxy; The Dark at the Top of the Stairs; Normal; The Audience (Drama Desk nomination); First Lady Suite;Requiem for William; Our Town. The Pearl Theatre Company: And Away We Go. Regional: Philadelphia Theatre Company: The Outgoing Tide (Barrymore Award nomination), The Light in the Piazza (Barrymore Award); Signature Theatre: Cake Off; Illinois Shakespeare Festival 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, & 2011 repertory seasons. National Tours: The Secret Garden, Once on This Island, Five Guys Named Moe, A Grand Night for Singing.
Adam Caldwell (Casting) works with Cindy Tolan. Broadway: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Betrayal, Cinderella, The Performers, Lysistrata Jones, Relatively Speaking, That Championship Season, A View from the Bridge, All My Sons, Avenue Q, and Xanadu. Previous productions with Vineyard Theatre, Bay Street, Dallas Theater Center, Playwrights Horizons, The Public Theater, and Lincoln Center Theater. Film: This Is Where I Leave you, The Place Beyond the Pines, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Winter’s Tale, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Blue Valentine, Another Happy Day, It’s Kind of a Funny Story, Letters to Juliet, The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, Starting Out in the Evening, Death of a President, The Darjeeling Limited. Upcoming films: Katie Says Goodbye, Breakable You. Television: Odd Mom Out, Deadbeat, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Flight of the Conchords, Fringe, The Return of Jezebel James, and multiple HBO pilots. Member of CSA.
Production Stage Manager
Ben Andersen (Production Stage Manager) is a freelance stage manager based in New York. NYC: Marie Antoinette (Soho Rep), You Got Older (Page 73), Harbor, A Lifetime Burning (Primary Stages), Fulfillment, Happy Days, Smoke (The Flea Theater), Rock & Roll Refugee (Royal Family), Fen, The Cripple of Inishmaan, Twelfth Night (The Juilliard School), The Drowsy Chaperone (NYU Tisch). Regional: Berkshire Theatre Festival (MA), New London Barn Playhouse (NH), Mirror Repertory (VT). B.A. Ithaca College. Proud member Actors’ Equity. Love to JLD.
Where this production of I REMEMBER MAMA was originally developed and produced
Transport Group is a not-for-profit, Off-Broadway theater company in New York City that stages new works and re-imagines revivals by American writers. Its visually progressive productions of emotionally classic stories explore the challenges of relationship and identity in modern America. Founded in 2001 by Artistic Director, Jack Cummings III, Transport Group has produced 25 productions comprised of 13 new works and 12 revivals, including 13 plays and 12 musicals. I Remember Mama, starring Drama Desk nominee Barbara Andres and Academy Award nominee Barbara Barrie, was produced in 2014 at the Gym at Judson, and was included in the New York Times’ Top 10 Theatrical Productions of the season as well as The New Yorker’s Top Cultural Moments of 2014. The production received numerous award nominations including a Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Revival of a Play. Additional recent productions include Once Upon a Mattress starring Jackie Hoffman and John “Lypsinka” Epperson, the world-premiere Three Days to See based on the writings of Helen Keller, and the first New York revival of John Cariani’s Almost, Maine. Next up at Transport Group is the one-night concert celebration of Sweet Charity on August 15. For tickets, upcoming season information and more, visit us: transportgroup.org, facebook.com/TransportGroup, @TransportGrp