Based on Thomas Vintenberg's Danish film of the same title, called The Celebration in the U.S., Festen was adapted for the stage by David Eldridge. In the play, a beloved patriarch (Larry Bryggman) is celebrating his 60th birthday at his country home, with his wife (Ali MacGraw), his daughter (Julianna Margulies), his two sons (Michael Hayden as Christian, Jeremy Sisto as Michael) and a host of family and friends in attendance. But as the party progresses, the man's eldest son, Christian, feels compelled to break the silence surrounding a family secret.
Sisto played the role of Billy in the popular HBO series Six Feet Under. He recently starred in the Ahmanson production of Dead End; his stage credits also include the Goodman Theatre production of Galileo and the Geffen Playhouse production of Take Me Out. Sisto has appeared in the films Clueless, Thirteen, Without Limits, and White Squall, and will be seen in the upcoming Population 436, Broken, Unknown, and Waitress.
Festen is directed by Rufus Norris, who won the Evening Standard and Critic's Circle awards for directing the play for the Almeida Theatre in London. The Broadway presentation reunites the creative team of the Almeida production, with sets by Ian MacNeil, costumes by Joan Wadge, lighting by Jean Kalman, original music by Orlando Gough, and sound design by Paul Arditti.