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3 neighbors to join Melissa Joan Hart in Westport County Playhouse benefit

Updated 9:12 am, Monday, July 22, 2013

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  • Melissa Joan Hart will play the disarmingly innocent mistress of a philandering business tycoon in a benefit reading of the comedy "Any Wednesday" at the Westport Country Playhouse. Photo: Contributed Photo / Westport News

    Melissa Joan Hart will play the disarmingly innocent mistress of a philandering business tycoon in a benefit reading of the comedy "Any Wednesday" at the Westport Country Playhouse.

    Photo: Contributed Photo

 

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Three stage veterans who live in Westport and Fairfield will join Westport's Melissa Joan Hart in a benefit reading of the romantic comedy "Any Wednesday" on Monday evening, July 29, at the Westport Country Playhouse.

Tony Award winner Joanna Gleason, Academy Award nominee Chris Sarandon and off-Broadway/regional theater actor Brian J. Carter will join in the reading, which will benefit the playhouse's Script in Hand series.

Hart, who currently stars in the ABC Family series "Melissa & Joey," had previously been announced as a cast member for the comedy about a married business tycoon who visits his mistress every Wednesday at a business-paid-for apartment.

The show is scheduled at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25, $50 and $100 and include a post-performance reception with the cast.

Like Hart, Carter lives in Westport. Gleason and Sarandon, who have been married nearly 20 years, live in Fairfield. So neighbors will share the stage.

In "Any Wednesday," John (played by Sarandon) is a millionaire businessman and philanderer who visits his disarmingly innocent mistress Ellen (Hart) every Wednesday. Trouble ensues when John's hoodwinked wife Dorothy (Gleason) and an irate business customer named Cass (Carter) are mistakenly sent to the apartment.

Written by Muriel Resnik, the show opened on Broadway in 1964 and had a two-year run with Sandy Dennis, Don Porter, Gene Hackman and Rosemary Murphy. A 1966 film version starred Jane Fonda, Jason Robards, Dean Jones and Murphy reprising her stage role.

Hart is best known for her starring role in the TV sitcom "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch," which aired from 1996 to 2003 and inspired two Disney movies. She made her first mark in television playing the title role in Nickelodeon's "Clarissa Explains It All."

She made her Broadway debut opposite Martin Sheen in "The Crucible," and was most recently in Nora Efron's Off-Broadway show "Love, Loss and What I Wore."

Gleason won the 1988 Tony Award for Best Actress for Stephen Sondheim's "Into the Woods." She received a Tony nomination for "Joe Egg," won a Theater World Award for "The Real Thing" and a Drama Desk Award for "Social Security." She appeared at the playhouse in "Come Be My Love," an evening of poetry, and a reading of "Fallen Angels."

Sarandon's Broadway credits include "The Rothschilds," "Two Gentlemen from Verona" and "Nick and Nora." His films include "Dog Day Afternoon," for which he received an Oscar nomination, and "The Princess Bride." He appeared at the playhouse in "Sedition," "Come Be My Love," and a reading of "Fallen Angels."

Carter performed at the playhouse in Script in Hand play readings of "Golden Boy," "Harvey," "Holiday" and "Beau Jest." Off-Broadway, he was in the original production of "Wit."

For more information or tickets, call the box office at 203-227-4177, visit www.westportplayhouse.org or visit the Westport Country Playhouse at 25 Powers Court.