New York's Signature Theatre Company, which devotes each of its seasons to the work of one playwright, has announced the scribes on whom it will focus through the spring of 2006.
Bill Irwin will be playwright in residence during the company's 13th season, 2003-2004. As an actor, Irwin was most recently seen in the Broadway production of Edward Albee's The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia? and is well known for his performances in Fool Moon with David Shiner. Signature will produce the world premieres of three of his works: The Harlequin Studies, a collection of pieces focusing on the commedia dell'arte character Harlequin, featuring acrobats and live music; The Regard Evening, an update of Irwin's comedy The Regard of Flight; and Mr. Fox: A Rumination, which examines the life and work of America's first celebrity clown, George L. Fox.
Signature's 2004-2005 season will focus on the work of Paula Vogel, who won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for How I Learned to Drive. And August Wilson, the author of plays such as Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (currently in revival on Broadway), Jitney, and King Hedley II, will be the subject of the 2005-2006 season.
Signature has also announced that founding artistic director James Houghton will be on sabbatical during the 2004-2005 season; serving in his stead will be Kate Loewald, a founding producer of The Play Company.