Acting family to play one in Westport Playhouse reading
Three members of one acting family will share the Westport Country Playhouse stage on Monday evening, Feb. 9, for a script-in-hand reading of "Painting Churches," Tina Howe's story of an aspiring artist's visit to her elderly parents.
Betty Gilpin -- who co-stars in the Showtime series "Nurse Betty" -- will play the artist, Mags Church. Her real-life parents -- veteran actors Jack Gilpin and Ann McDonough -- will play her character's stage parents, Gardner and Fanny Church.
The production is at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 and available online, by phone and at the playhouse box office.
In "Painting Churches," Gardner and Fanny Church are preparing to move out of their Beacon Hill house. Gardner, once a famous poet, now retired, slips in and out of senility as his wife Fanny valiantly tries to keep them both afloat.
Their daughter Mags comes home to help, hoping to finally paint their portrait. She is on the verge of artistic celebrity and hopes, by painting her parents, to come to terms with them, and they with her, according to playhouse publicity for the event.
"When I realized I could cast an actual family to play all the roles, it seemed a no-brainer," director Anne Keefe said in the news release. "I'm looking forward to seeing art imitate life and vice versa."
In addition to her role as Dr. Carrie Roman on "Nurse Jackie," Betty Gilpin is now performing off-Broadway in the two-character play, "I'm Gonna Pray for You So Hard," with Reed Birney. She has appeared in Playhouse play readings of "The Breadwinner," "Holiday" and "Butterflies Are Free."
Jack Gilpin was at the Westport Country Playhouse in "Lend Me a Tenor," "The Fourth Wall," "A Cheever Evening," "Hay Fever," "A Holiday Garland," and Script in Hand play readings of "Fallen Angels" and "Holiday." He has played both on and off Broadway and has acted in more than 30 films, including "Something Wild," "Reversal of Fortune" and "Higher Ground."
Ann McDonough was recently at the playhouse in a Script in Hand play reading of "The Mousetrap." She also appeared there in A.R. Gurney's "The Cocktail Hour." In New York, she appeared in Gurney's "The Dining Room," and regionally in Long Wharf Theatre's "Our Town." Her film credits include "Moonstruck" and "Six Degrees of Separation."
For more information or tickets, visit www.westportplayhouse.org, call the box office at 203-227-4177 or visit Westport Country Playhouse at 25 Powers Court.