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Jessica Hecht to Lead World Premiere of Sarah Ruhl's Letters From Max

Ruhl brings her personal correspondence with a late student to the stage in a poetic new play.

Jessica Hecht will star in Letters from Max off-Broadway.
(© Tricia Baron)

Signature Theatre has announced the cast and creative team for the world-premiere production of Sarah Ruhl's Letters From Max, the first production of Ruhl's Spotlight Residency. Performances will run February 7-March 19, with an official February 27 opening at the Pershing Square Signature Center's Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre.

Directed by Kate Whoriskey, Letters From Max is an adaptation of Ruhl and Max Ritvo's 2018 epistolary book, Letters from Max: A Poet, a Teacher, a Friendship. As press materials describe, "In these notes, verses, and utterances, her former student, the late poet Max Ritvo (Four Reincarnations), openly discusses terminal illness and tests poetry's capacity to put to words what otherwise feels ineffable." The piece is a hybrid work that blends poetry, music, and dialogue.

Ben Edelman (Admissions) and Zane Pais (The Perplexed) will play the role of Max on alternating nights, while the role of Sarah will be played by Tony nominee Jessica Hecht (A View From the Bridge).

The creative team includes scenic design by Marsha Ginsberg, costume design by Anita Yavich, lighting design by Amith Chandrashaker, sound design by Sinan Refik Zafar, projection design by S Katy Tucker, and choreography by Warren Adams. Joshua Larrinaya-Yocom serves as props supervisor, with Shelley Miles as production stage manager.

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