For the second season in a row, CFM is sponsoring a play presented by Portland-based Artists Repertory Theatre. This year's play is The Gin Game, a 2-actor play about senior citizens at a nursing home who rehearse the ups and downs of their lives over a recurring card game.
The Gin Game opened on Broadway in 1977 under the direction of Mike Nichols and featuring the real life couple of Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy, who won a Tony Award as Best Actress for her performance. They were succeeded on the original Broadway run by E.G Marshall and Maureen Stapleton. Twenty years later, the play was revised on Broadway with Charles Durning and Julie Harris.
Cronyn and Tandy reprised their roles in a TV adaptation in 1981, and were followed by a second adaption in 2002 starring Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore.
Playwright D. L. Coburn was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1978. Since then, the play has been staged throughout the world.
The Gin Game was added to this season's lineup at ART to replace The Invisible Hand, a thriller about an investment banker held by Islamic militants that turns into a tutorial on modern economics and monetary policy. ART decided to pull the play because of difficulty obtaining visas for Pakistani actors who were slated as part of the cast. CFM agreed to continue its sponsorship after the switch. ART plans to reschedule The Invisible Hand next season.
Rehearsal has begun for The Gin Game, which will star retiring ART Artistic Director Allen Nause and Vana O'Brien. The play opens March 26 and runs through April 28 at ART's Morrison Stage.
"ART is one of Portland's most respected and cherished artistic treasures," says CFM President Gary Conkling. "It dares to take risks on stage, while operating in a financially prudent manner that has given actors, audiences and the community a reliable source of great theater for years."
CFM previously sponsored ART's production of "God of Carnage," the Tony Award-winning play that kicked off its 2011-2012 season.