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'The Beauty Queen of Leenane' Opens at the Taper


Led by Tony-Winning Director Garry Hynes, Martin McDonagh’s Play Runs Through December 18

The Druid production of “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” by Martin McDonagh opens this Wednesday, November 16 at 8 p.m. at Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum. Directed by Tony Award-winning director Garry Hynes, performances for “Beauty Queen” will continue through December 18. Previews began Wednesday, November 9.

“Beauty Queen,” which is set in the mountains of Connemara, County Galway, is the tale of Maureen Folan, a plain and lonely woman in her early 40s, and Mag, her manipulative, aging mother, whose interference in Maureen's first and potentially last romantic relationship sets in motion a chain of events that are as tragically funny as they are horrific.

The cast includes, in alphabetical order, Aaron Monaghan, Marie Mullen, Aisling O’Sullivan and Marty Rea. Mullen, who played the daughter Maureen in the original 1996 production and earned a Tony Award for her performance, now plays the role of Maureen’s mother Mag; O’Sullivan plays Maureen; Rea plays Pato; and Monaghan plays Ray.

The design team includes Francis O’Connor for sets and costumes, James F. Ingalls for lighting and Greg Clarke for sound. Paddy Cunneen is the composer and Bryan Burroughs is fight director.

Peter Marks of The Washington Post said of McDonagh, “Please avail yourself, and brace yourself, for the virtuosic turbulence of one of modern theater’s most giddily diabolical minds.” “McDonagh’s writing is a tightrope act of unnerving skill and maturity,” said John Peter of London’s Sunday Times. Benedict Nightingale, writing for The New York Times, said, “[Martin McDonagh is] the most wickedly funny, brilliantly abrasive young dramatist on either side of the Irish Sea.”

Hynes won a Tony Award for her direction of “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” on Broadway in 1998. She also directed McDonagh’s “The Cripple of Inishmaan” at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre in 2011, as well as Arthur Miller’s “The Price” at the Taper in 2015. Center Theatre Group presented McDonagh’s “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” at the Taper in 2010.

McDonagh is an award-winning writer and director. His work with Druid includes “The Beauty Queen of Leenane,” “A Skull in Connemara,” “The Lonesome West” (Druid/Royal Court/Broadway) and “The Cripple of Inishmaan” (Druid/Atlantic Theater Company/U.S. Tour). Other theatre includes “The Cripple of Inishmaan” (National Theatre, London/West End/Broadway), “The Pillowman” (National Theatre, London/Broadway), “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” (RSC/Garrick/Broadway), “A Behanding in Spokane” (Broadway) and “Hangmen” (Royal Court). His film work (as a writer/director) includes “Six Shooter” (a short), “In Bruges” and “Seven Psychopaths.” His awards include the Olivier Award for Best New Comedy (“The Lieutenant of Inishmore”), Olivier Award for Best New Play (“The Pillowman”), Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film (“Six Shooter”), BAFTA for Best Original Screenplay (“In Bruges”).

The Taper run is the first U.S. engagement in the tour. Subsequent stops will be at BAM in New York, ArtsEmerson in Boston, the August Wilson Center in Pittsburgh and the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Center Theatre Group, one of the nation’s preeminent arts and cultural organizations, is Los Angeles’ leading nonprofit theatre company, programming seasons at the 736-seat Mark Taper Forum and 1600 to 2000-seat Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles, and the 317-seat Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. In addition to presenting and producing the broadest range of theatrical entertainment in the country, Center Theatre Group is one of the nation’s leading producers of ambitious new works through commissions and world premiere productions and a leader in interactive community engagement and education programs that reach across generations, demographics and circumstance to serve Los Angeles.

Tickets for “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” are available by calling (213) 628-2772 or online at Tickets range from $25 – $85 (ticket prices are subject to change). The Mark Taper Forum is located at the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Avenue in Downtown L.A. 90012.

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November 15, 2016