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News Section: Arts and Entertainment



Other Desert Cities Brings Political Family Drama to Asolo

Published Saturday, January 4, 2014 12:03 am

SARASOTA — Jon Robin Baitz is the creator of the hit TV show "Brothers & Sisters". His stage play "Other Desert Cities" made a big splash when it debuted off-Broadway in 2011, before being named as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. January 17, the tale of a family divided by political ideology comes to the Asolo stage in a highly-anticipated production to be directed by FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training Director/Associate Artistic Director of Asolo Rep Greg Leaming.

The politically divided and emotionally stunted Wyeth family puts the “fun” in dysfunctional. Former actor-turned-ambassador, Republican Party bigwig Lyman Wyeth and his wife, Polly, live a picturesque life in their very own affluent exile – the Palm Springs Desert. When their daughter, left-winged Brooke, returns home during Christmas of 2004 for the first time in six years, she reveals that she has written a tell-all memoir that discloses the family’s controversial past, including one very painful incident.

 

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This shocking announcement sends the Wyeth family down an emotional spiral where they are forced to revisit and ultimately heal their wounds from the past. Polly’s recovering alcoholic sister, Silda, and Brooke’s TV producer brother, Trip, complete this holiday family reunion.

“In what in many ways is Baitz’s most American play, he has woven a very complex series of relationships in the Wyeth family,” said Director Greg Leaming. “It’s a very raw, very honest, very funny play – smart, bitter, scathing, really one of this author’s best works. Other Desert Cities is a portrait of a family that is very unique and uniquely American!”

Baitz is one of America's most celebrated playwrights. The Drama Desk Award winner's other works include "A Fair Country", "The Substance of Fire", "Ten Unknowns", "Three Hotels", "The Paris Letter", and "Mizlansky/Zilinsky".


"Jon Robin Baitz’s extraordinary play charts how politics can tear apart a family, and this family is a kind of emblem for America itself. It is painful, hilarious and profound,” said Michael Donald Edwards, Producing Artistic Director of Asolo Rep.

Previews will be held January 15 – 16, opening night will be on January 17 at 8 p.m. and the show will run through February 27. For more information, visit www.asolorep.org/shows/other-desert-cities/2013-2014.

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Obituaries

Name Date
Lee Jackson April, 2014
Virginia Goodhew April 11, 2014
Dorothy Hackett April 9, 2014
Margaret Nelson April 9, 2014
Robert McNally April 2, 2014
James Hibbs April 4, 2014
Marvin Prager April 7, 2014
David Marsh April 4, 2014
Cheryl Edgington March 29, 2014
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