Edward Gero
Edward Gero
Initial casting has been announced for Arena Stage's 2011-2012 season at the Mead Center for American Theater.

Edward Gero and Patrick Andrews will star in John Logan's bioplay about painter Mark Rothko, Red (January 20-March 11), directed by Robert Falls, which will have its first engagement lat Chicago's Goodman Theatre, September 17-October 23.

Kate Baldwin will play Marian in Meredith Willson's The Music Man, which will run May 11-July 22. Artistic director Molly Smith will stage this musical about a con-man who comes to the sleepy town of River City to rid it of "sin and corruption" by starting a boy's band.

E. Faye Butler will star in Trouble in Mind (September 9-October 23), Alice Childress' look at a theater company rehearsing an anti-lynching drama at the dawn of the Civil Rights Movement, to be directed by Irene Lewis.

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival's production of Bill Cain's Equivocation (November 18-January 1, Kreeger Theater), an imagined look at Shakespeare during the Gunpowder Plot of 1605, will be directed by Bill Rauch. Amy Freed's You, Nero, about a playwright struggling through Nero's reign in Rome, will run November 25-January 1.

Arena Stage also plans to offer a Eugene O'Neill Festival which will have at its center productions of the playwright's semi-autobiographical comedy Ah, Wilderness! (March 9-April 3, Fichandler), and his autobiographical drama, Long Day's Journey Into Night (March 30 -May 13, Kreeger), which will be directed by Robin Phillips.

Like Water for Chocolate (June 26-July 29, Kreeger), with a book by Quiara Alegria Hudes and music and lyrics by Lila Downs, will feature Downs and Paul Cohen. The show, based on Laura Esquivel's novel, focuses on a young woman who cannot marry the man she loves because he is engaged to her older sister. The production will be co-directed by Ted Sperling and Jonathan Butterell.

The theater's season will also include Karen Zacarias' The Book Club Play (October 7-November 6), Elephant Room (January 20 - February 26, Kogod Cradle), to be directed by Paul Lazar and created by Steve Cuiffo, Trey Lyford and Geoff Sobelle, which centers on three semi-pro magicians, and Tazewell Thompson will direct his own play Mary T. & Lizzy K (Kogod), which looks at the relationship between first lady Mary Todd Lincoln and her seamstress.

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