MTC Announces World Premiere of The Portuguese Kid with Tony Winner Jason Alexander

Lynne Meadow (Artistic Director) and Barry Grove (Executive Producer) are pleased to announce Manhattan Theatre Club will produce the world premiere of The Portuguese Kid, a new play written and directed by Tony, Pulitzer Prize, and Academy Award winner John Patrick Shanley, presented as part of MTC’s upcoming 2017-2018 season.

The production will feature Tony Award winner Jason Alexander who starred in the iconic television series “Seinfeld” for which he received six Emmy Award nominations. Alexander made his Broadway debut in Stephen Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along and received a Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical for Jerome Robbins’ Broadway. His film credits include Pretty WomanLove! Valour! Compassion!, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame

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The Portuguese Kid will begin previews September 19, 2017 ahead of an October 24, 2017 opening night at MTC at New York City Center – Stage I (131 West 55th Street).

In Providence, Rhode Island, habitually widowed Atalanta pays a visit to her second-rate lawyer Barry Dragonetti (Jason Alexander). Intending to settle her latest husband's affairs, this larger-than-life Greek tightwad quickly becomes a nightmare for her cheesy, self-aggrandizing attorney. Add Barry's impossible Croatian mother, a dash of current politics and a couple of opportunistic young lovers, and you have in hand a recipe for comic combustion. 

This feisty romantic comedy could only come from John Patrick Shanley, the Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the MTC hits Doubt and Outside Mullingar, and the Academy Award-winning screenwriter of Moonstruck.

The Portuguese Kid marks MTC’s 12th collaboration with Shanley, a partnership that spans over three decades. 

Additional casting, creative team, and other listings information for The Portuguese Kid will be announced at a later date. 

In addition to The Portuguese Kid, Manhattan Theatre Club’s 2017-2018 season will also include the previously announced Broadway premiere of Prince of Broadway and the American premiere of The Children at MTC’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, the New York premiere of In the Body of the Worldat New York City Center – Stage I and the New York Premiere of Actually at MTC at the Studio At Stage II – Harold and Mimi Steinberg New Play Series. Additional productions for MTC’s 2017- 2018 season will be announced soon.

Manhattan Theatre Club, under the leadership of Artistic Director Lynne Meadowand Executive Producer Barry Grove, has become one of the country’s most prominent and prestigious theatre companies. Over the past four and a half decades, MTC productions have earned numerous awards including six Pulitzer Prizes and 20 Tony Awards. MTC has a Broadway home at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street) and two Off-Broadway theatres at New York City Center (131 West 55th Street). Renowned MTC productions include Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes; August Wilson’s Jitney; Heisenberg by Simon Stephens; The Father by Florian Zeller with translation by Christopher Hampton; Fool For Love by Sam Shepard; Airline Highway by Lisa D’Amour; Casa Valentina by Harvey Fierstein; Outside Mullingar and Doubt by John Patrick Stanley; The Commons of Pensacola by Amanda Peet; Murder Ballad by Julia Jordan and Juliana Nash; Choir Boy by Tarell Alvin McCraney; The Assembled Parties by Richard Greenberg; Wit by Margaret Edson; Venus in Fur by David Ives; Good People and Rabbit Hole by David Lindsay-Abaire; The Whipping Man by Matthew Lopez; Time Stands Still by Donald Margulies; Ruined by Lynn Nottage; Proof by David Auburn; The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife by Charles Busch; Love! Valour! Compassion! by Terrence McNally; The Piano Lesson by August Wilson; Crimes of the Heart by Beth Henley; and Ain’t Misbehavin’, the Fats Waller musical. For more information on MTC, please visit www.ManhattanTheatreClub.com.

TICKETING INFORMATION

New and renewing subscribers can still join us for the season by calling The MTC Clubline at 212-399-3050. Single ticket information along with other listings information for MTC’s 2017-2018 season will be announced at a later date.

For more information and to sign up for MTC’s “30 Under 30” program for theatregoers age 30 and under visit www.manhattantheatreclub.com/30under30/.

BIOGRAPHIES
JOHN PATRICK SHANLEY (Writer, Director) is from The Bronx. His plays include Prodigal SonOutside Mullingar (Tony nomination), Danny and the Deep Blue SeaSavage in LimboItalian-American ReconciliationWelcome to the MoonFour Dogs and a BoneDirty StoryDefiance, and Beggars in the House of Plenty. His theatrical work is performed extensively across the United States and around the world. For his play, Doubt, he received both the Tony Award and the Pulitzer Prize. In the arena of screenwriting, he has nine films to his credit, most recently Doubt, with Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, and Viola Davis; Doubt, directed by Shanley, was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Adapted Screenplay. Other films include Five Corners (Special Jury Prize, Barcelona Film Festival), AliveJoe Versus the Volcano (which he also directed), and Live From Baghdad for HBO (Emmy nomination). For his script of Moonstruck he received both the Writers Guild of America Award and an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. In 2009, The Writers Guild of America awarded Shanley the Lifetime Achievement In Writing.

JASON ALEXANDER (Barry Dragonetti). Aside from his performances on stage, screen, and television, he has worked extensively as a writer, composer, director, producer, and teacher of acting. His Broadway debut was in the original cast of the Stephen Sondheim musical Merrily We Roll Along, directed by Harold Prince. He continued starring on Broadway in the original casts of Kander and Ebb’s The Rink, Neil Simon’s Broadway Bound, Rupert Holmes’ Accomplice, and his Tony Award-winning performance in Jerome Robbins’ Broadway. Alexander also authored the libretto for that show which went on to win the Tony Award for Best Musical. Most recently, Jason returned to Broadway to star in the Larry David comedy Fish in the Dark. After moving to L.A., Jason continued working in the theater, notably serving as the artistic director for the Reprise Theatre Company and for the hit West Coast production of Mel Brook’s The Producers in which he starred along with Martin Short. His many films include: Pretty Woman, Jacob’s Ladder, Love! Valour! Compassion!, Rocky and Bullwinkle, Dunston Checks In, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Shallow Hal. In addition, he directed the feature films For Better or Worse and Just Looking. He is also a distinguished television director, overseeing episodes of “Seinfeld,” “Til Death,” “Everybody Hates Chris,” “Mike and Molly,” “Criminal Minds,” and “Franklin and Bash.” He won the American Country Music Award for his direction of Brad Paisley's video “Cooler Online.” Currently in production, Jason is starring and producing a new original comedy series called “Hit the Road” for AT&T Audience Network. He also starred in the television films of Bye Bye Birdie, Cinderella, A Christmas Carol, and The Man Who Saved Christmas. Additionally, his voice has been heard most notably in “Duckman,” “The Cleveland Show,” “American Dad,” “Tom and Jerry,” and the upcoming children’s animated series, “Kody Kapow.” For his depiction of ‘George’ on “Seinfeld,” Jason garnered six Emmy nominations, four Golden Globe nominations, an American Television Award, and two American Comedy Awards. He won two Screen Actor Guild Awards as the Best Actor in a Television Comedy despite playing a supporting role, and in 2012 he was honored to receive the Julie Harris Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Actor's Fund.

Trevor Chauvin