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Long Wharf Theatre is a nonprofit institution in New Haven, Connecticutmarker, a pioneer in the not-for-profit regional theatre movement, the originator of several prominent plays, and a venue where many internationally known actors have appeared.

Founded in 1965, the theatre has received numerous awards over the years, including a Tony Award for Best Regional Theatre and Pulitzer Prizes for several of its original plays. The theatre, currently led by Artistic Director Gordon Edelstein and Managing Director Ray Cullom, is committed to the creation of new works and the reexamination of classic plays.

As of 2009, the theatre had recently staged world premieres by Craig Lucas, Paula Vogel, Athol Fugard and Anna Deavere Smith, among others. In addition, some of the nation’s leading actors, including Sam Waterston, Brian Dennehy, Judith Ivey and Anna Deavere Smith, have performed on the theatre’s stages.

History

Long Wharf Theatre was founded by Jon Jory and Harlan Kleiman in 1965 when Arthur Miller's The Crucible opened for a two-week engagement. Named after the Long Wharf in New Haven Harbor, the theatre was built in a vacant warehouse in a food terminal. The main stage seats were borrowed from a defunct movie house. The budget for the first year was $294,000, when more than 30,000 tickets were sold.

Arvin Brown and Edgar Rosenblum led the theater for the next three decades. Doug Hughes later succeeded Brown as artistic director for four seasons. Gordon Edelstein, previously the artistic director of ACT Theatre in Seattle for five years, became Long Wharf's artistic director on July 1, 2002. (From 1990 to 1997, he worked under Brown as Long Wharf's associate artistic director, except from 1991 to 1995, when budgetary constraints squeezed out the position and he remained as an associate director helping to develop new plays and directed several main stage shows.) Joan Channick became the managing director in September 2006 and left the job in February 2009 to take a newly created position as associate dean at the Yale School of Drama. Channick had overseen the theater’s financial, administrative and technical operations. Ray Cullom succeeded her as managing director.

More than 30 Long Wharf productions have been transferred to Broadway or Off-Broadway, including Durango, Wit, (winner of a Pulitzer Prize), The Shadow Box (Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award/Best Play winner), Hughie, American Buffalo, Requiem for a Heavyweight, Quartermaine's Terms (Obie Award winner for best play), The Gin Game (Pulitzer Prize winner), The Changing Room, The Contractor and Streamers.

As of 2009, the theatre sold more than 100,000 tickets in a typical year, with an annual season of six plays on two stages, as well as programs for children new play workshops and various special events. Long Wharf continued to premiere new plays, including A Civil War Christmas by Paula Vogel and Coming Home by Athol Fugard.

Long Wharf Theatre has received awards from the New York Drama Critics Circle, Obie Awards, the Margo Jefferson Award for Production of New Works, a special citation from the Outer Critics Circle and, in 1978, the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre.

Productions

Notable Talent

Long Wharf has featured actors, playwrights, and directors such as Sam Waterston, Lynn Redgrave, Al Pacino, Brian Dennehy, Frank Langella, Athol Fugard, John Lithgow, Austin Pendelton, Mike Nichols, Christopher Lloyd, Mandy Patinkin, Designer Ming Cho Lee, Victor Garber, Edward Herrmann, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Swoosie Kurtz, Alan Feinstein, Richard Dreyfuss, David Hyde Pierce, Richard Jenkins, Kelsey Grammar, Kathleen Quinlan, William H. Macy, Jane Kaczmarek, Joanne Woodward, Treat Williams, Kathleen Turner, Frances McDormand, Kevin Spacey, Tom Berenger, Anna Deveare Smith, David Margulies, Raul Esparza, Martha Plimpton, Dan Lauria, Mia Farrow, among others.

Premieres



Broadway

Produced at Long Wharf: 2002-2003Opened at Walter Kerr Theatre: March 2004

Produced in association with Circle in the SquaremarkerProduced at Long Wharf: summer of 1996Transferred to Circle in the Square: 1996

Produced at Long Wharf: 1993-94Transferred to Booth Theatre: 1994

Produced at Long Wharf: 1986-87Transferred to John Golden Theatremarker: 19871987 Tony Award for Best Revival1987 Tony Award Nominations: Best Actor (Richard Kiley), Best Supporting Actor (James Sheridan)1987 Outer Critic’s Circle Award: Best Revival

Produced at Long Wharf: 1983-84Transferred to Martin Beck Theatre: 1985

Produced at Long Wharf: 1981-82Transferred to Ambassador Theatre: 19831983 Tony Award nominations: Best Reproduction, Best Actor (Tony Lo Bianco)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1980-81Transferred to Little Theatre: 1982

Produced at Long Wharf: 1980-81Transferred to Booth Theatre: 1983

Produced at Long Wharf: 1979-80Transferred John Golden Theatre: 1980

Produced at Long Wharf: 1976-77Transferred to John Golden Theatre: 19771978 Pulitzer Prize for Drama1978 Tony Award: Best Actress (Jessica Tandy)1978 Tony Award nominations: Best Play, Best Director (Mike Nichols), Best Actor (Hume Cronyn)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1976-77Transferred to Morosco Theatre: 19771977 Pulitzer Prize for Drama1977 Tony Awards: Best Play,Best Director (Gordon Davidson)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1977-78Transferred to Circle in the Square: 1979

Produced at Long Wharf: 1975-76Transferred to Mitzi E. Newhouse Theatre: 19761976 New York Drama Critics Circle Award: Citation for Best American Play1977 Tony Award nominations: Best Play, Best Director (Mike Nichols)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1974-75Transferred to Circle in the Square: 19751976 Tony Award nomination: Best Director (Arvin Brown)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1974-75Transferred to Edison Theatre: 19741975 Tony Award: Best Actors in a Play (John Kani and Winston Ntshona)1975 Tony Award nominations: Best Play,Best Director (Athol Fugard)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1973-74Transferred to Circle in the Square: 19741975 Tony Award nominations: Best Play,Best Director (Arvin Brown)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1972-73Transferred to Morosco Theatre: 19731973 N.Y. Drama Critics Circle Award: Best Play1973 Tony for Best Featured Actor (John Lithgow)1973 Tony Award nominations: Best Play, Best Director (Michael Rudman), Best Scenic Design (David Jenkins)

Produced at Long Wharf: 1970-71Transferred to John Golden Theatre: 1971

Off-Broadway

  • Durango by Julia Cho


Produced at Long Wharf: 2006-07

Transferred to the Public Theater: 2006

  • BFE by Julia Cho


Produced at Long Wharf: 2004-05

Transferred to Playwrights Horizons: 2005

  • Fran’s Bed by James Lapine


Premiered at Long Wharf: 2003-04

Produced at Playwrights Horizons: 2005

  • The Dog Problem by David Rabe


Produced at Long Wharf: 1999-00

Transferred to Atlantic Theater Co.: 2000-01

  • Down the Garden Paths by Anne Meara


Co-production with George Street Playhouse

Produced at Long Wharf: 1999-00

Transferred to Minetta Lane Theatre: 2000-01

  • Red by Chay Yew, produced in association with Manhattan Theatre Club


Produced at Long Wharf: 1998-99

Transferred to MTC, Stage II: 1999

  • Mystery School by Paul Selig


Produced at Long Wharf: 1997-98

Transferred to Orensanz Foundation Center for the Arts: 1998

  • Wit by Margaret Edson, produced in association with Manhattan Class Company


Produced at Long Wharf: 1997-98

Transferred to Union Square Theatre: 1998

1999 Pulitzer Prize for Drama

1999 Drama Desk Awards: Outstanding Play and Best Actress in a Play (Kathleen Chalfant)

1999 Drama League Awards: Best Play, Distinguished Performance in a Play (Kathleen Chalfant)

1999 OBIE Award: Sustained Excellence of Performance (Kathleen Chalfant)

1999 Lucille Lortel Awards: Outstanding Play, Outstanding Performance (Kathleen Chalfant), Outstanding Director (Derek Anson Jones),

Outstanding Lighting Design (Michael Chybowski)

1999 N.Y. Drama Critics Circle Award: Best Play

  • I Love You, You're Perfect...Now Change!


Book & lyrics by Joe DiPietro, music by Jimmy Roberts

Produced at Long Wharf: summer of 1996

Transferred to Westside Theatre – Upstairs: 1996

  • Travels With My Aunt by Graham Greene


Produced at Long Wharf: 1994-95

Transferred to Minetta Lane Theatre: 1995

  • The Baby Dance by Jane Anderson


Produced at Long Wharf: 1990-91

Transferred to Lucille Lortel Theatre: 1991

  • The Lady and the Clarinet by Michael Cristofer


Produced at Long Wharf: 1982-83

Transferred to Lucille Lortel Theatre: 1983

  • Quartermaine's Terms by Simon Gray


Produced at Long Wharf: 1982-83

Transferred to Playhouse 91: 1983

1983 OBIE Award for Ensemble Performance

  • Self Defense by Joe Cacaci


Produced at Long Wharf: 1986-87

Transferred to the Joyce Theater: 1987

  • The Contractor by David Storey


Produced at Long Wharf: 1971-72

Transferred to The Chelsea Theatre Center: 1973

1974 New York Drama Critics Award: Best Play

1973-74 OBIE Award: Best Foreign Play

  • A Place Without Doors by Marguerite Duras


Produced at Long Wharf: 1970-71

Transferred to Stairway Theatre: 1971

  • A Whistle in the Dark by Thomas Murphy


Produced at Long Wharf: 1967-68

Transferred to Mercury Theatre: 1969

References

  1. Web page titled "Long Wharf Theatre: A History", at Long Wharf Theatre website, retrieved November 21, 2009
  2. Web page titled "The Long Wharf Theatre Staff", at Long Wharf Theatre website, retrieved November 21, 2009
  3. Doherty, Donna, arts editor, "Long Wharf’s Channick heading to Yale", article, The New Haven Register, December 12, 2008, retrieved December 14, 2008


External links




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