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Vassar College and New York Stage and Film Present Powerhouse Theater


Fiddler on the Roof's Robert Petkoff Will Star in Big Wyoming, an Aging Philosopher's Reflections on Life, Love, and the Paris of His Youth, July 13-17 at the Powerhouse Theatre Season

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY – Robert Petkoff, who played the wide-eyed university student "Perchik" in the 2004 Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Fiddler on the Roof (and romanced away eldest daughter "Hodel"), will star in the new play Big Wyoming July 13-16 at the 21st Vassar and New York Stage and Film Powerhouse Theatre Season. In Robert Neipris's Big Wyoming, directed by Hal Brooks, Petkoff will play "E. M. Cioran," a Romanian writer and philosopher in the twilight of life, reliving memories of Paris, his one great love, and the painful consequences of youthful ideas. Powerhouse audiences first discovered Big Wyoming during a Readings Festival at the 2004 Season with Tony Award nominee Michael Stuhlbarg (The Pillowman.)

In London, Petkoff was seen with Dame Judi Dench in the West End production of The Royal Family. An accomplished Shakespearean actor, Petkoff has played in Hamlet and Troilus and Cressida with the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. Petkoff starred as "David" in the award-winning independent film Milk & Money, and his films also include Loverboy, Liberace, and Vice Versa.

Maria Thayer ("Irene Lervasse") is known for her performance as "Tammi Littlenut" on the television program Strangers With Candy (Comedy Central), and will continue in this role for the upcoming film of the same name. Her films also include Storytelling, Kimberly, Hitch (with Will Smith), and Scratch.

Ali Marsh ("Nurse Claudette" and "Emmanuelle") appeared in the 2002 made-for-TV movie Hysterical Blindness (with Uma Thurman). Marsh's other film credits include this summer's blockbuster Mr. and Mrs. Smith, as well as the 1998 Rear Window (with Christopher Reeve), Safe Men, The Deli, Stella Shorts 1998-2002, The Mirror Has Two Faces, and Hit and Runway. She has appeared on the television programs The Education of Max Bickford, Chicago Hope, Providence, Seinfeld, and Law and Order.

A playwright and actor, David Neipris first presented a reading of Big Wyoming at the 2004 Powerhouse Season, and his plays also include Strange Gods, Rosette's Little Wonder and The Stone Guest. He has written and co-authored (with Davey Holmes of Law and Order) scripts for film, television and radio, including Green (Belladonna Films, with producer Carsten Lorenz), Soho Pictures (Truth & Soul Productions), and Smile (National Public Radio). He also wrote and directed the short film Go To Sleep Suzanne. Neipris appeared in Lost In Yonkers on Broadway, The Mud Angel at the Soho Repertory, and in two plays directed by Moisés Kaufman at New York's Angel Orensanz Center (Endgame and The Idiot Works).

Hal Brooks directed Will Eno's Thom Pain (based on nothing) at the DR2 Theatre in New York, and its incarnations at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the Soho Theatre in London. As the Artistic Director of the Rude Mechanicals Theater Company of New York, he directed the Off-Broadway premieres of Don DeLillo's Valparaiso and Will Eno's The Flu Season (the 2004 George Oppenheimer Award winner). In addition to directing credits, Brooks is also a playwright: his works appeared at the New York Theater Workshop, Naked Angels, Cherry Lane, The Magic Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theater, INTAR, and the American Conservatory Theater, and he directed Beckett's Rough For Theatre #1 as part of DirectorFest 2003.

Five performances of Big Wyoming will be presented from Wednesday July 13 through Saturday July 16 at the Powerhouse Theatre, with shows each evening at 8:00 p.m. and an additional Saturday matinee at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $20 and may be purchased online at http://powerhouse.vassar.edu, by phone at (845) 437-5599 or (845) 437-7235, or by visiting the Powerhouse box office on Vassar's Poughkeepsie, New York campus.

Since 1985, Vassar and New York Stage and Film's Powerhouse Season has premiered numerous new works destined for on- and off-Broadway production, and made Poughkeepsie a theater destination for thousands of theatre lovers. Powerhouse has also trained an entire generation of young artists through its annual summer apprentice training program, which produces an outdoor repertory series on the Vassar campus. More than 200 professional playwrights, directors, actors, and designers, and more than 50 apprentices from high schools and colleges across the United States, live and work together each summer in a rich collaborative environment on the Vassar campus.

Further information on the Vassar and New York Stage and Film's Powerhouse Season can be found at http://powerhouse.vassar.edu.

Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Tuesday, July 5, 2005