Lake George Theater Lab to Stage Reading of New Play by Daisy Foote
“The Cottage,” a work-in-progress by the playwright Daisy Foote, will receive a workshop reading by the Lake George Theater Lab on July 30 at the Sagamore.
The reading is the centerpiece of the Lake George Theater Lab’s seventh season, said Theater Lab founder Lindsey Gates.
Gates describes “The Cottage” as “eerie and mysterious.”
“A woman returns to the small town where she spent a memorable summer with her father, a famous novelist, who has just passed away. The mystery unfolds from there,” said Gates.
As the focus of this year’s New Play Laboratory, “The Cottage,” will receive intensive scrutiny, said Gates.
“Every summer, the Lake George Theater Lab selects artists to come upstate for a week on the lake and lab a brand new play,” Gates explained. “The playwright, director and actors all live in one house and workshop the play’s structure, theme, dialogue, you name it, and then present a reading to the public with a guided talk-back afterward for the playwright to gather as much feedback as possible. “
Foote’s credits include “Bhutan,” an Outer Critics Circle Award nominee, presented at the Cherry Lane Theater, the screenplay for “The Church of Dead Girls,” an upcoming film based on a novel by Stephen Dobyns, and “When They Speak of Rita,” which was directed by her father, the Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Horton Foote and which featured her sister, actor Hallie Foote.
That play was set in New Hampshire, where Daisy Foote’s family moved in the mid 1960s and where she graduated from the local high school.
Daisy Foote’s mother, Lillian Vallish Foote, took a job in real estate to help support the family and enable Horton Foote to continue writing, Foote has said in interviews.
It was in their New Hampshire town of New Boston that her father wrote the screenplay for Tender Mercies, for which he received an Academy Award, as did its star, Robert Duvall.
Foote also won an Academy Award for his 1962 adaptation of Harper Lee’s ‘To Kill a Mockingbird.” He died in 2009 at the age of 92.
“There may be autobiographical elements in “The Cottage,” but if so, they’re less important than the mystery at the play’s center,” said Lindsey Gates.
“The Cottage” will be directed by Evan Yionoulis, a resident director at Yale Repertory Theater and the former chair of Yale’s acting program. Known as a director’s director, she works frequently with such distinguished playwrights as Jon Robin Baitz, Richsard Greenberg and Foote herself.
“We are incredibly lucky to have Daisy Foote and Evan Yionoulis with us this year,” said Gates. “Evan and Daisy are frequent collaborators. She directed Daisy’s play “Bhutan” off-Broadway and will direct her new play, “Him,” this Fall at Primary Stages in New York City.”
Of all the plays submitted to Gates for the 2011 season, “The Cottage” was not only among the most interesting, it was likely to benefit most from a laboratory environment, said Gates.
“Daisy Foote knows exactly what she wants to accomplish here, and part of our mission is to assist playwrights develop their work,” said Gates.
“The Cottage” will be presented in the Dollar Island Room inside the Sagamore hotel. The reading begins at 8 pm. Tickets are $15 each. For reservations, call 518-203-2600.