Inclusive Dates: June 12 - August 10 1996
Roundabout Theatre Company staged Herb Gardner's A Thousand Clowns at the Criterion Center, Stage Right, with previews June 12, opening night July 14, and closing night August 10, 1996.
The production was to initally star Robert Klein and Jane Adams with direction by Gene Saks but artistic differences led all three to leave the production weeks before previews were to start. Scott Ellis was brought in to direct with Judd Hirsch and Marin Hinkle replacing Klein and Adams. Given its challenged beginning, critics mostly praised the revival, with Clive Barnes of the New York Post writing "it is an extraordinarily funny play with some brilliantly offbeat lines."
Set design by Henry Dunn and Ben Edwards, costume design by Jennifer von Mayrhauser, lighting designs by Rui Rita, sound design bsy Richard Dunning. Production stage manager, Jay Adler.
Dov Tiefenbach played the part of Nick Burns, Judd Hirsch played the part of Murray Burns, Jim Fyfe played the part of Albert Amundson, Marin Hinkle played the part of Sandra Markowitz, David Margulies played the part of Arnold Burns, John Procaccino played the part of Leo Herman. Understudies John Procaccino, Jackie Apodaca, Jason Huber, Peter Van Wagner and Tre Roy.
Written in 1962, A Thousand Clowns is play about an eccentric New York writer who is forced into convention in order to gain custody of his young nephew. Jason Robards played the original Murray on Broadway as well as the film adaptation of 1965.
The 1996 Broadway revival was riddled with artistic problems ultimately resulting in new actors and director being brought in shortly before previews began. Details regarding these issues are found in the reports provided by stage management.
Collection consists of two Hollinger boxes containing production documentation, script, extensive news clippings files, playbills, and administrative files. Collection lacks most documents detailing artistic vision for the play (director's notes, and set, lighting and sound notes). The set model designed by Dunn/Edwards was retained and used in the education department for many years. The model was deposited into the archives in 2010 in fairly good condition.
Photograph folder contains black and white 8 x10 prints, contact sheets, opening night contact sheets with select prints.
Digital file contains digitzed copy of B-Roll; scanned photographs, press clippings, playbill, and study guide; photos of set model, props lists (provided by stage manager Jay Adler) and show art used by the marketing department to promote the production.
Marketing mock up folder contains various versions of artwork and advertising drafts.
Access Restrictions: Open and available for research by appointment only.
Preferred Citation: A Thousand Clowns 1996, Roundabout Theatre Company Archives
Library of Congress Subject Heading Roundabout Theatre CompanyGardner, Herb, 1934-2003Fyfe, JimHinkle, MarinProcaccino, JohnMargulies, DavidEdwards, Ben, 1916-1999Rita, RuiEllis, ScottHaimes, ToddTheater--New York (State)Saks, Gene, 1921-Adams, Jane, 1965-Klein, Robert, 1942- Robert Klein, comedian
Hollinger box consists of management files.
One Hollinger Box containing stage documents, including costume and set, performance reports and education materials.