The Merchant of Venice resumes performances

The Public Theater’s production of The Merchant of Venice, starring Al Pacino as 'Shylock' and Lily Rabe as 'Portia,' resumes performances at the Broadhurst Theatre on 1 Feb 2011 for a final three week extension through to 20 Feb 2011.

The show went into hiatus following its 9 Jan 2011 performance (when it was originally scheduled to close) due to a film commitment in Al Pacino’s schedule.

The Merchant of Venice opened at Broadway's Broadhurst Theatre on 7 Nov 2010, following previews from 19 Oct, to mostly excellent reviews: Absolutely splendid production (NY Times); Fast-paced, engaging, accessible (NY Post); Theatrical fireworks explode (Back Stage); "An uncommonly satisfying production (Hollywood Reporter).

The Merchant of Venice stars Al Pacino (Shylock), Lily Rabe (Portia), Byron Jennings (Antonio), Gerry Bamman (Duke of Venice), Heather Lind (Jessica), Matthew Rauch (Solanio) and Richard Topol (Tubal) who reprise their roles from the Shakespeare in the Park production, which played from 12 Jun - 1 Aug 2010 at Delacorte Theater in Central Park.

New cast members in the Broadway company include Marsha Stephanie Blake (Nerissa), Christopher Fitzgerald (Launcelot Gobbo), David Harbour (Bassanio), Peter Francis James (Salerio), Isaiah Johnson (Prince of Morocco) and Charles Kimbrough (Prince of Arragon).

Due to other commitments Jesse L. Martin who played 'Gratiano' and Seth Numrich who played 'Lorenzo,' are not able to continue with the production for its final three week extension, and have been replaced by David Aaron Baker and Thomas Michael Hammond, respectively.

The company also features Happy Anderson, Liza J. Bennett, Glenn Fleshler, Luke Forbes, Herb Foster, Bryce Gill, Jade Hawk, Bethany Heinrich, Curt Hostetter, Tia James, Kelsey Kurz, Brian Keith Macdonald, Dorien Makhloghi, Kim Martin-Cotten, Brian Sgambati and Baylen Thomas.

The story of The Merchant of Venice centres on 'Portia,' a young heriress, who finds herself in a life or death confrontation in a climactic courtroom trial with 'Shylock,' a jewish money-lender.

The design team for The Merchant of Venice features scenic design by Mark Wendland, costume design by Jess Goldstein, lighting design by Kenneth Posner and sound design by Acme Sound Partners.

The Merchant of Venice is produced on Broadway by The Public Theater, Jeffrey Richards and Jerry Frankel.