Exploring Tennessee Williams in a Virtual Staged Reading

Clockwise from top left: Mercedes Ruehl, Harris Yulin, Tedra Millan and Ebon Moss-Bachrach star in "Portrait of Tennessee: The Words of Tennessee Williams."

On Saturday, May 16, four great actors — stars of Broadway, television and the cinema — reunite virtually for one night only in a very special live online Zoom theatrical event to benefit the John Drew Theater at Guild Hall, which has been closed since the start of the pandemic. “Portrait of Tennessee: The Words of Tennessee Williams” starring Mercedes Ruehl, Harris Yulin, Ebon Moss-Bachrach and Tedra Millan will be presented virtually from 8 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $0 to $25 or additional donation to support Guild Hall

Director and actor Harris Yulin returns to Guild Hall where he directed a 2009 production of Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie” starring Amy Irving and Ebon Moss-Bachrach. That production served to re-open the John Drew Theater after major renovations.

Yulin has also directed many readings at Guild Hall with stars such as Eli Wallach, Dianne Wiest, Edward Asner and F. Murray Abraham, including last season’s sold-out reading of Jules Feiffer’s “A Bad Friend” which celebrated the playwright’s 90th birthday.

For this production, Yulin is joined by longtime friend and collaborator Mercedes Ruehl. The legendary Academy, Golden Globe, Tony, Obie and Drama Desk-award winning Ruehl is herself no stranger to Guild Hall, having appeared in dozens of readings over the course of the last two decades, as well as starring in Jenny Lyn Bader’s comedy “Manhattan Casanova” in 2001.

Also joining this stellar ensemble are Ebon Moss-Bachrach (“Girls,” “John Adams,” “The Punisher,” “NOS4A2”) who in addition to starring in “The Glass Menagerie” appeared at Guild Hall alongside Ruehl, Richard Kind and James Earl Jones in a recent reading of the political thriller “Are You Now…”, also directed by Yulin.

The final cast member is rising Broadway star Tedra Millan (“Present Laughter,” and “The Wolves” at Lincoln Center) who returns to Guild Hall for this virtual reading, having made her actual debut there last summer as the lead in Feiffer’s “A Bad Friend.”

Yulin is a master interpreter of the work of Tennessee Williams, and he brings his prodigious knowledge, experience and passion to this project, which is artfully arranged and scripted entirely from Williams’ essays, letters, journals and plays. Arranged by Yulin and playwright Jack Canfora, the performance will shine a light on the brilliance of one of America’s most impactful playwrights and will offer an informal and intimate experience up close with four astonishing actors in a virtual event exclusive to Guild Hall. This event is produced by the Drew’s Artistic Director Josh Gladstone, who will introduce the evening, and is stage managed and assistant directed by Amanda Kate Joshi.

Visit guildhall.org for information on how to access the production.