Vineyard Theatre announces Billy & Ray cast


The off-Broadway non-profit Vineyard Theatre has announced full casting for its upcoming production of Billy & Ray, which begins previews on 1 October 2014, before officially opening on 20 October and continuing its limited engagement to 9 November 2014.

The cast of Billy & Ray includes Vincent Kartheiser (Billy Wilder), Larry Pine (Raymond Chandler), Sophie von Haselberg (Wilder's secretary) and Drew Gehling (the Studio Chief).

Written by Mike Bencivenga, the comedy will be directed by Garry Marshall who also directed the world premiere in the spring of 2013 at the Falcon Theatre, located in Burbank, California and founded by Mr. Marshall and his daughter Kathleen Marshall LaGambina.

"Billy & Ray charts the birth of the film noir genre, following literary odd couple writer-director Billy Wilder and novelist Raymond Chandler as they contentiously collaborate to adapt 'Double Indemnity' for the silver screen. Set in 1940's Hollywood, the comedy is the true story of how two brilliant and thorny artists battled the Hollywood censors and each other to create a groundbreaking movie classic."

The creative team features set design by Charlie Corcoran, lighting by Russell Champa, costumes by Michael Krass and sound design by David Van Tieghem.

As previously announced, The Vineyard will follow this production in the new year with Gloria by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins in the Spring of 2015, along with the world premiere of musical Brooklynite which features a book by Peter Lerman and Michael Mayer, along with music and lyrics by Peter Lerman.

Vincent Kartheiser (Billy Wilder) is perhaps best known for his TV role as Pete Campbell on popular drama series 'Mad Men'. Film credits include 'In Time' and 'Alpha Dog'.

Larry Pine (Raymond Chandler) last appeared on Broadway in Harvey Fierstein's 'Casa Valentina'. His other Broadway credits include 'The Royal Family', 'The Seagull', 'End of the World', 'Angels in America' and 'Bus Stop'.

Drew Gehling's Broadway credits include 'Jersey Boys' and 'On A Clear Day You Can See Forever'.

Sophie von Haselberg will be making her NY theatre debut and has previously performed at Williamstown Theatre Festival, Yale Cabaret and Berkshire Theatre Group.

- by Tom Millward