For immediate release.
JANE FONDA TO STAR IN “33 VARIATIONS” AT CTG/AHMANSON THEATRE
Moisés Kaufman’s New Broadway Drama to Be Presented in January-March 2011
Five-Time Tony Award-Nominated Play is Part of Mark Taper Forum’s 2011 Season
Two-time Academy Award-winner Jane Fonda will star in “33 Variations,” the compelling new play written and directed by Moisés Kaufman, at the Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre, January 30 through March 6, 2011. Opening is set for February 9.
The legendary film and stage actress will reprise the role she created for the 2009 Broadway run of “33 Variations” and for which she received a Tony Award nomination.
The play, which was nominated for a total of five Tony Awards, will be part of the Mark Taper Forum’s 2011 season, and will be offered as a bonus option to Ahmanson Theatre season ticket holders.
Jane Fonda will head a cast of eight in the play created by Kaufman, who received Tony Award nominations for “33 Variations” (Best Play 2009) and for “I Am My Own Wife” (Best Director 2004), and most recently directed the acclaimed “Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo,” at the Mark Taper Forum and earlier at the Kirk Douglas Theatre.
In “33 Variations,” the audience is transported back and forth from present-day New York to 19th century Austria, when a musicologist (Fonda) is determined to solve the musical mystery of why Beethoven spent his last years feverishly writing 33 variations of what appeared to be a mediocre waltz created by his publisher.
Even though she has been diagnosed with a serious disease, the scholar dismisses her daughter’s concerns and flies to Europe to study Beethoven’s original papers. It is here that a heartfelt and moving story unfolds of how two remarkable individuals separated by 200 years defy mortality for a short, precious time and revel in their respective passions.
Praising Fonda's “robust and confident performance,” Joe Dziemianowicz of the New York Daily News said, “The Oscar winner brings everything to this role that’s made her an iconic film star: Pure enthusiasm, toughness tempered by vulnerability, and that distinctive voice which makes every line fascinating.” John Simon of Bloomberg News wrote: “Fonda gives a sterling performance, never milking the pathos.” Ben Brantley of The New York Times said, “Her elegantly restrained rendering of a struggle between fierce human consciousness and mortal decay comes close to matching ‘the notes ascending – a rising promise’ that [the character] says she hears in Beethoven’s music.” Stephanie Zacharek of New York magazine said, “Fonda meets the challenge like a warrior queen. She may be playing an academic, but the physicality of her performance is what sticks with you. She uses her trim, sturdy frame to suggest the myriad ways in which our bodies – one way or another – can ultimately betray our minds.”
Jane Fonda’s work on stage and screen has earned numerous nominations and awards, including Academy Awards (Best Actress in 1971 for “Klute” and in 1978 for “Coming Home”) and an Emmy Award for her performance in “The Dollmaker.” Along with starring roles in dozens of highly acclaimed productions, Fonda also took on responsibilities as a film and television producer, including “Coming Home,” “The China Syndrome” “Nine to Five,” “Rollover,” “On Golden Pond,” “The Morning After” and “The Dollmaker.”
She revolutionized the fitness industry with the release of “Jane Fonda’s Workout” in 1982, which remains the top grossing home video of all time, and followed with the production of 23 home exercise videos, 13 audio recordings and five books – selling 16 million copies all together.
She published her memoirs, “My Life So Far,” in May 2005 and it immediately went to #1 on The New York Times Best Sellers list. That same spring “Monster-in-Law,” her first film in 15 years, also became the #1 box office hit making Fonda the first person to simultaneously have a #1 book and #1 movie. She is currently writing the follow up to “My Life So Far,” which will focus on aging and the “third act” of life. Her most recent film, “Georgia Rule,” opened in spring 2007. Fonda returned to Broadway in March 2009 to create her role in “33 Variations.” Upcoming film projects include a starring role in the French comedy, “Et si on vivait tous ensemble,” and also “Peace, Love & Misunderstanding,” along with Catherine Keener.
Fonda has long been known for activism and advocacy on environmental issues, human rights, and the empowerment of women and girls. She founded the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention (G-CAPP) in 1995, and chairs this statewide effort to reduce the high rates of adolescent pregnancy in Georgia through community, youth and family development, training of professionals who work with adolescents, and legislative advocacy. In 2000, Fonda traveled to Nigeria and produced a film, in collaboration with the International Women's Health Coalition, entitled “Generation 2000: Changing Girls’ Realities.”
Fonda is a member of the Women & Foreign Policy Advisory Committee of the Council on Foreign Relations; the board of Women’s Media Center, which she co-founded in 2004; and she sits on the board of V-Day: Until The Violence Stops, a global effort to stop violence against women begun in 1998 by Eve Ensler, author of “The Vagina Monologues.” In 1994, Fonda was named Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund.
In addition to Tony Award nominations for Best Play and Best Actress, “33 Variations” was nominated for Featured Actor, Scenic Design and Lighting Design.
Further casting for “33 Variations” will be announced at a later date.
The complete 2011 Mark Taper Forum season will be announced this summer, and as part of the season package, “33 Variations” will go on sale to Taper season ticket holders. Ahmanson season ticket holders will be able purchase the play as a bonus option to their Ahmanson subscription. In late October, “33 Variations” will be on sale to the general public. For information and to charge season tickets by phone, call the Exclusive Season Ticket Hotline at (213) 972-4444. To purchase subscriptions on-line, visit CenterTheatreGroup.org. For information regarding Project D.A.T.E. (sign language interpreted, open caption and audio described performances) call TDD (213) 680-4017 or voice (213) 972-4444.
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August 5, 2010