(Eric Grode’s article appeared in The New York Times, 1/1/15; via Pam Green.)
“This obviously isn’t for money or glory, so come and do it if you want.”
Peter Sarsgaard typed that sentence in an email to an actor friend of his not long ago. “It” was the production of “Hamlet” that Classic Stage Company will present beginning in March, with Mr. Sarsgaard in the dual role of headliner and, apparently, behind-the-scenes casting agent. That show will follow this East Village theater’s mounting of Turgenev’s “A Month in the Country,” which begins previews Jan. 9 with Peter Dinklage and Taylor Schilling. And after his “Hamlet” winds down, the rest won’t be silence for long: Chris Noth of “Law & Order” and “The Good Wife” fame is coming in to play Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus.
Classic Stage is hardly unique among theater companies in realizing that famous names sell tickets, but the number of well-known actors making the trip to this 199-seat space on East 13th Street is noteworthy. The previous three years have featured Elizabeth Olsen, Mandy Patinkin, John Turturro, F. Murray Abraham, Ethan Hawke and Dianne Wiest, among others, taking on the likes of Shakespeare, Chekhov and Brecht.