Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Edward Albee's A Delicate Balance Next for Arena Stage

Illustration by Jim Salvati

A Delicate Balance is a searing play which won the 1967 Pulitzer Prize, and Edward Albee himself is helping guide the cast and creative team in this provocative new staging. Experienced Albee collaborator Pam McKinnon directs, and Albee himself has already made an appearance as the Arena Stage prepares the work.

Featuring Broadway stars Kathleen Chalfant (Wit, Angels in America), Terry Beaver (Henry IV, The Last Night of Ballyhoo), Ellen McLaughlin (Angels in America) and Carla Harting (Eurydice),joined by Helen Hedman and James Slaughter, A Delicate Balance runs February 6–March 15, 2009 at Arena Stage in Crystal City, Virginia.

L-R) Ellen McLaughlin as Claire, Kathleen Chalfant as Agnes, Terry Beaver as Tobias, and Carla Harting as Julia in A Delicate Balance at Arena Stage in Crystal City February 6—March 15. photo by Scott Suchman

“Albee is fearless about writing stories that get us in the solar plexus, and he does so with his brilliant wit, dynamic storytelling and rigorous use of language,” shares Artistic Director Molly Smith. “His work draws the best artists, and with this production audiences are fortunate to have an enormously strong cast and creative team—approved by Albee himself.”

“A Delicate Balance is a mountain of a play, at once domestic and existential, both funny and harrowing,” says MacKinnon. “It is a true joy to come to rehearsal to wrestle with this potent classic that seems perfectly written for our precarious times and having Edward around is always a treat. The actors feed off his insights and it's a great shortcut to actually hear the author's intent.”

The play explores the complicated family life of Agnes and Tobias, a retired couple living in suburban America with Agnes’ alcoholic sister, Claire. Agnes and Tobias’ house becomes unexpectedly full when their daughter, Julia, returns home after yet another failed marriage and their friends Harry and Edna move in without warning. Free-flowing cocktails, secret histories and unspoken boundaries create the prickly climate of this American family.

Tickets may be purchased online at and by phone at (202) 488-3300.

1 comment:

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