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Jun 19, 2014
Jun 19, 2014
Segal Theater
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Free + open to the public. First come, first served.

A Master Builder photo

6:30 pm: A Master Builder
Join us for a screening of an adaptation of Ibsen’s masterpiece. The artistic triumvirate of Jonathan Demme, André Gregory, and Wallace Shawn update Henrik Ibsen’s The Master Builder, a modern classic about a successful, egomaniacal architect who has spent a lifetime bullying his wife, employees and mistresses – who nonetheless wants to make peace with himself as his life approaches its final act. Wallace Shawn gives a tour-de-force performance as the cruel, yet guilt-ridden architect, working from his own translation of the Norwegian text. Jonathan Demme’s direction is based on the near-legendary production created for the stage by André Gregory, over a period of more than 10 years. Lisa Joyce plays a sensual, mysterious young visitor who turns the household upside down, much to the consternation of Julie Hagerty, perfectly cast as Shawn’s neurasthenic, long-suffering wife. Scandinavian angst — reinterpreted by New York’s finest. ( USA, 2014, 127 MINS., distributed by ABRAMORAMA, synopsis by Karen Cooper.)

A Master Builder is a continuation of Gregory and Shawn’s theatre work for film. In 1994, the two collaborated on Vanya on 42nd Street, filmed by Louis Malle and Andre Gregory, based on Vanya by Anton Chekhov, as adapted by David Mamet. Gregory and Shawn collaborated in the iconic 1981 independent film My Dinner With Andre. A Master Builder is distributed by Abramorama, Richard Abramowitz, New York.

Followed by a discussion with Wallace Shawn, Marvin Carlson (CUNY), and Jim Leverett (Yale), moderated by Frank Hentschker.

A Master Builder photo

4:00 pm: Before and After Dinner
Before and After Dinner is an exploration, at once deeply probing and expansively entertaining, of the life and work of the groundbreaking director, actor and artist André Gregory. Always witty and often hilarious, the raconteur Gregory looks back on a career which has spanned decades, shattered boundaries and established him as a cultural icon. He recalls the making of My Dinner With Andre, the classic film directed by Louis Malle, and written and starred in by him, along with Wallace Shawn. He takes us directly into his own rehearsal of Ibsen’s The Master Builder with Julianne Moore and, again, his essential actor, Wallace Shawn. On the way he reflects on his central role in American theatre and dishes about his brief sojourn in Hollywood. Ultimately, he reveals the discovery that led him to question his own identity and life’s work. Gradually we the viewers discover that Gregory’s odyssey begins even before he was born, ranges through the capitals of Europe just before World War II, and makes a salto mortale into this country just as the cataclysm is beginning. Gregory brings us back and forth in time, as he looks not only at his life but his world. On the way, he reflects deeply upon the nature of art, love and the creative process. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Cindy Kleine (who is also his wife), Andre Gregory: Before and After Dinner is a brilliant portrait of a modern renaissance man.

Before and After Dinner is distributed by The Cinema Guild.

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