The Substance of Fire: Full Cast and New Dates

Second Stage Theatre have announced full casting and new dates for Jon Robin Baitz's The Substance of Fire, directed by Trip Cullman. The play will now run from 10 Apr - 18 May 2014, with an official opening set for Sun 27 Apr 2014.

The cast will feature Halley Feiffer (2ST’s suburbia, The House of Blue Leaves), Daniel Eric Gold (2ST’s subUrbia, Ugly Betty), Carter Hudson (The Whipping Man), John Noble (TV’s Fringe and Sleepy Hollow), and Charlayne Woodard (2ST’s Sorrows and Rejoicings, Ain’t Misbehavin’).

The Substance of Fire will feature scenic design by Anna Louizos, costume design by Emily Rebholz, lighting design by Peter Kaczorowski and sound design by Jill BC Du Boff.

Synopsis: Isaac Geldhart, the volatile and brilliant patriarch of his family publishing house, is stubbornly holding on to his place at the head of the company while his three children try to convince him to publish a desperately needed best-seller. Faced with a changing literary landscape and potential takeover of the company, the Geldhart children must either come to terms with their father and band together or break apart and forfeit the legacy he risked everything to build.

Halley Feiffer returns to Second Stage Theatre where she has appeared in subUrbia, Election Day, and Some Americans Abroad. She has appeared on Broadway in The House of Blue Leaves (Theatre World Award), and off-Broadway in Women or Nothing (Atlantic), Medieval Play (Signature), Tigers Be Still (Roundabout), and Still Life (MCC).

Daniel Eric Gold returns for his third production at Second Stage Theatre after appearing in Eric Bogosian's subUrbia and Carly Mensch’s Len, Asleep in Vinyl. Other Off Broadway credits include The Paris Letter (Roundabout Theatre Company), Small Tragedy (Playwrights Horizons - OBIE award), cagelove (Rattlestick Theatre), This Thing of Darkness (Atlantic Theater Company), and Beautiful Thing (Cherry Lane Theatre). Regional credits include Captors (Huntington Theatre), The Singing Forest and Loot (Intiman Theatre), Dealer's Choice (Victory Gardens), Indiscretions (Organic Theater), and Henry V (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre). Daniel also appeared for two seasons as Matt Hartley on ABC's Ugly Betty.

Carter Hudson's theatre credits include The Whipping Man, The Chosen (both at Portland Center Stage); Mai Dang Lao (JAW New Play Festival); Empire Comics Presents . . . (Strangemen & Co.); The Boogyman Thumbs A-1-A and The Three Sisters (both with Glass Bandits); and '68 (workshop with LAByrinth Theater Company).

John Noble is well known to TV audiences for his performance as Dr. Walter Bishop on JJ Abrams’ cult TV show, Fringe, for which he won the 2011 Critics' Choice Television Award and the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama. He is also currently a series regular on the popular Fox show, Sleepy Hollow. He was Artistic Director of the Stage Company of South Australia for ten years. He directed David Williamson’s Sons of Cain in London’s West End, and acted in an award winning production of Rob George’s Errol Flynn’s Great Big Adventure Book for Boys at the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland. Other highlights of John's stage career include producing over 70 new Australian plays, 240 performances of Ron Blair’s one man play The Christian Brothers, and directing the enormously successful, Percy and Rose, by Rob George for the 1982 Adelaide Festival of Arts and its subsequent national tour. In addition to many TV roles in his native Australia, he has appeared on 24, The Unit, Journeyman, and The Good Wife, as well as “Denethor” in The Lord of the Rings films, Return of the King and The Two Towers.

Charlayne Woodard appeared at Second Stage Theatre in Athol Fugard’s Sorrows and Rejoicings. Other recent acting credits include The Witch of Edmonton (Obie Award); In The Blood by Suzan-Lori Parks (Obie Award); Fabulation by Lynn Nottage; and Stunning by David Adjmi. Recent regional credits include Taming of the Shrew (Katherine) at Shakespeare Theatre Company and A Midsummer Night's Dream at The La Jolla Playhouse. On Broadway, she was in the original company of Ain't Misbehavin', for which she received Tony Award and Drama Desk nominations.

Jon Robin Baitz made his New York playwriting debut at Second Stage Theatre in 1988 with his play, 'The Film Society,' starring Nathan Lane, Laila Robins, and Daniel Gerroll. His many plays include 'Three Hotels,' 'A Fair Country,' 'Mizlansy/Zilinsky or "Schmucks,"' 'Ten Unknowns' and T'he Paris Letter. Baitz's Pulitzer Prize and Tony nominated play 'Other Desert Cities' is soon to have its Uk premiere at London's Old Vic Theatre.

Director Trip Cullman returns to Second Stage Theatre where he has productions of 'Bachelorette,' 'Lonely, I'm Not,' 'Swimming in the Shallows' and 'Some Men.'

Second Stage theatre's Founder and Artistic Director Carole Rothman said,

One of the highlights of the past 35 years has been the opportunity to introduce promising playwrights to New York audiences and I'm extremely proud to have given Robbie his first New York production back in 1988 with 'The Film Society.' It is a thrill to welcome him back to Second Stage for this 35th Anniversary season and to re-mount one of his most powerful plays in New York for the first time in over two decades."

The original production of The substance of Fire premiered at Playwrights Horizons in 1991 in a production directed by Daniel Sullivan and starring Ron Rifkin and Sarah Jessica Parker. It subsequently transferred to Lincoln Center's Mitzi Newhouse Theatre and was also made into a 1996 film.

- by Tom Millward

The Substance of Fire by Jon Robin Baitz