Posted on December 24, 2009
New York’s Signature Theater--whose signature is devoting an entire season to the work of one playwright--is getting a new home come 2012. The city has chipped in $25 million toward the projected cost of the move to a Frank-Gehry-designed space on 42nd Street, where the theater will be part of a residential hotel and building on 10th Avenue. The new space, a 59-story complex, will include three theaters, a bookstore, rehearsal studio, and administrative offices. It will feature environmentally conscious building materials. The theater was originally slated to move into a performance space at the World Trade Center site. The news is welcome in the theater world, especially at a time of such economic doubt when funding for the arts is down. Past playwrights who have been featured include Horton Foote (“The Trip to Bountiful”); and August Wilson (“Two Trains Running”). The work of playwright-in-residence Tony Kushner, known for works like “Angels in America,” will kick off the 20th anniversary season in 2010-2011. Actors who have appeared in past Signature productions include Parker Posey, Edward Norton, Catherine Keener, and Anne Bancroft. The announcement was made this week at a ceremony featuring Mayor Mike Bloomberg, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, and Tony Kushner, as well as luminaries in the theater world like actor Bill Irwin and playwright John Guare. The theater is currently featuring the work of playwright Horton Foote.