Director: Mike Nichols
Cast: Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Christopher Walken, Marcia Gay Harden, John Goodman, Debra Monk, Larry Pine, Stephen Spinella.
Opening night: August 12, 2001 but the play opened for previews on July 24th 2001.
Performed: from July 24th until August 26th of 2001 at the Delacorte theater in Central Park.
Natalie’s Character: Nina Mikhailovna Zarechnaya.
Plot Summary: Somewhere in the Russian country, about 1900. People fall in love, people drink, people shoot birds and even themselves. Medvedenko, a schoolteacher, is in love with Masha, the daughter of Shamrayev who is the Manager of Sorin’s estate, where the play takes place. But Masha is in love with Konstantin, the son of Sorin’s sister Arkadina, a celebrated actress. He is in love with Nina, an aspiring actess who lives across the lake near the estate. He suffers from the humiliation of his mother who is more interested in the writer Trigorin than in him. Trigorin himself is in love with the landscape since it offers him distraction from his manic desire to write. Eventually Arkadina spoils a play that Konstantin has set up with Nina in the main role. His yearning for a new form of theater alienates him from Nina who falls for Trigorin. She leaves Konstantin and moves to Moscow with Trigorin to become an actress. And then things go to hell.
Notes: Tickets for the public were free. Due to the star-studded cast, people stood in line for 16 hours and longer to get the them. Since all performances took place at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, some nights (including the opening night) were rained out. All the actors were working for $646 a week. The seats in the theater were green.
Natalie wore a hair piece during the first three acts and she also got to sit on a horse in the first act.
The Seagull was a spectacular failure on its first appearance in 1896, Later it established Anton Chekhov as an important and revolutionary dramatist, though.
Running Time: approx. 160 mins.
- USA Today
- New York Blade News
- Show business weekly
- Curtain Up
- “Natalie Portman plays the part well with a believable naiveté and youthful abandon.”