Photos: Gerry Goodstein
American Buffalo - Regional revival of David Mamet’s American classic
August 24 – September 2, 2017
One of Pulitzer Prize-winner David Mamet’s defining works, instantly acclaimed when it opened on Broadway. Starring Treat Williams and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis, Dorset Theatre Festival now takes a fresh look at a trio of misguided misfits who are a little out of luck and way out of their league as they plot the theft of a rare coin collection. American Buffalo crackles with explosive humor, frenetic energy, and surprising tenderness.
Season Support provided by the Richard Rodgers Family Foundation
Peggie Telscher and Tom Snopek
Stephen Adly Guirgis* (Donny) is a member and former co-artistic directorof LAByrinth Theater Company. His plays have been produced on five continents and throughout the United States. His most recent play, Between Riverside and Crazy (dir: Austin Pendleton) premiered at Atlantic Theater Company, moved to Second Stage Theatre, and garnered numerous awards including the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Other plays include: The Motherf***er with the Hat (6 Tony nominations, including Best Play, dir: Anna D Shapiro), Den of Thieves (directed by Max Daniels), Dominica The Fat Ugly Ho (dir: Adam Rapp), as well as Our Lady of 121st Street, Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train, In Arabia, We’d All Be Kings, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Public Theater) and The Little Flower of East Orange (Public Theater) — all five directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman and world premiered at Labyrinth Theater Company. In London, his plays have premiered at The Donmar Warehouse, The Almeida (dir: Rupert Goold), The Hampstead (Robert Delamere), and at The Arts Theater in the West End (Dir: Philip Seymour Hoffman). As an actor, he has appeared in theater, film and television, including roles in Alejandro Inarritu’s Oscar-winning Birdman, Kenneth Lonergan’s Margaret, Todd Solondz’s Palindromes, and Brett C. Leonard’s Jailbait, opposite Michael Pitt. He co-created and executive produced Netflix’s The Get Down with Baz Luhrmann. Other awards include: the Yale Wyndham-Campbell Prize, The Harold & Mimi Steinberg Award, PEN/Laura Pels Award, Whiting Award, TCG fellowship, Fringe First Award, NY Drama Critics Circle, L.A. Drama Critics Prize, and a Lucille Lortel Award. A former violence prevention specialist and H.I.V. educator, he lives in New York City.
Oliver Palmer* (Bobby) is ecstatic to be making his regional debut at Dorset Theater Festival. Theater: Over There (Harold Clurman LAB Productions); The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Stella Adler Studio); Two Gentlemen of Verona, Titus Andronicus, Henry V, All’s Well that Ends Well, Much Ado About Nothing (Shakespeare in the Square); Coriolanus (Combative Theater Co.); As You Like It (No Stone Productions); Hamlet (Playwrights Horizons Theater School); Richard III, The Tempest (Smith Street Stage). Film: Dream On, Apt. 15G (Seven Wonders Cinema). Education: NYU Tisch School of the Arts (’17), the Stella Adler Studio and the Experimental Theater Wing. Oliver grew up on a farm in rural Kentucky and plays the drums in educational concerts for toddlers on the Upper East Side. Olivercpalmer.com.
Treat Williams* (Teach) has had a long and happy collaboration with David Mamet. He has performed in The Water Engine (Film), Speed The Plow (Williamstown), Bobby Gould in Hell (Lincoln Center) and Oleanna (Off-Broadway). He directed the short film Texan written by Mr. Mamet, which won best film at three film festivals. He is proud to reconnect with his friend Mr. Mamet in American Buffalo. He has been nominated for four Golden Globe Awards, an Emmy , two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and has won two Theater World Awards for his work in Broadway Musicals. Broadway: Grease, Over Here, Once In A Lifetime, Pirates Of Penzance, Love Letters, Captains Courageous The Musical, and Follies. Film: The Ritz, The Eagle Had Landed, Hair, Prince Of The City, Once Upon A Time In America, 1941, Smooth Talk, Things To Do In Denver When You’re Dead, The Phantom, Deep End Of The Ocean, The Devil’s Own, Hollywood Ending, Miss Congeniality 2, What Happens In Vegas, 127 Hours. TV: A Streetcar Named Desire, Dempsey, The Late Shift, Everwood, Law And Order SVU, The Simpsons (as himself), White Collar, Chicago Fire, Hawaii Five-O, CSI, and Blue Bloods, Confirmation. He currently stars as Mick Obrien in The Hallmark series, Chesapeake Shores. He is an avid reader, gardener, skier, pilot, husband, and father. He lives in Vermont with his wife Pam and children, Gill and Elinor.
David Mamet is the award-winning author of numerous plays, including Oleanna, Glengarry Glen Ross (1984 Pulitzer Prize for Drama; New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award), American Buffalo, Speed-the-Plow, Boston Marriage and November. Mr. Mamet has written the screenplays for The Verdict, The Untouchables, and Wag the Dog, and has twice been nominated for an Academy Award. He has written and directed 10 films, including Homicide, The Spanish Prisoner, State and Main, House of Games, Spartan and Redbelt. He has authored the novels The Village, The Old Religion and Wilson: A Consideration of the Sources, and was co-creator and executive producer of The Unit on CBS. Festival awards for original play, music and lyrics) and several choral works published by Final Score Music.
John Gould Rubin (Director) is the current Artistic Director of The Private Theater, noted for radical site-specific productions, and former Artistic/Executive Director of LAByrinth Theater Company, for whom he directed 7 plays. He’s directed throughout NYC at Rattlestick, Ma-Yi, and The Public among others, notably: Turn Me Loose at The Westside Theater, Peer Gynt at The International Ibsen Festival in Oslo, Norway, Playing With Fire (a deconstruction of Strindberg’s one-act about wife swapping, voyeurism and exhibitionism at The Box, the notorious sex cabaret,) Queen For A Day at St. Clements and The Cherry Orchard with Ellen Burstyn at The Actors Studio. Current projects: Rocco, Chelsea, etc. a devised project about the consciousness of conflict and the American Political Divide and an Afro-German, site-specific production of Hedda Gabler in Berlin, Germany.
Christopher Barreca (Scenic Designer) has worked on 200 productions. Broadway: Rocky (2014 Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle), Search and Destroy, Our Country’s Good, Marie Christine, The Violet Hour, Chronicle of a Death Foretold (American Theatre Wing Award). Off-Broadway: St. Joan Into the Fire, Turn Me Loose, Master Herold, Painted Rocks, The Train Driver, Blood Knot, Everett Beekin, Three Days of Rain (Drama Desk Nomination), Bernarda Alba, Roberto Zucco, Burning Patience, Neon Psalms (American Theater Wing nomination). Opera: Peach Blossom Fan, Scourge of Hyacinths (BMW Award Nomination), Matsukaze (Spoleto/Lincoln Center Festival). Regional: The Birds, Hedda Gabler, Twilight: Los Angeles. International: King Lear (Dijon Festival), Solo Macbeth (Almeida Theatre). Directing: Pitersburg, The Sinking of the Titanic, Dachniki (Золотой Софит Nomination, Russia). Christopher is the Head of Scenic Design at California Institute of the Arts. chrisbarreca.com
Kate Fry (Costume Designer) designs costumes for opera, theatre, film, and dance. Her work explores clothing as poetry and illustrates the complex nature of identity as both individual and contextual within society. Recently, Kate’s designs have shown at BAM Opera House (Brooklyn Youth Chorus’ Silent Voices) and at LA Opera’s Off Grand (Kamala Sankaram’s opera Thumbprint). Beyond the stage, Kate’s work ranges from fine art–teaming up with French artist Julien Previeux’s project What Shall We Do Next (winner of the Prix Marcel Duchamp)–to film and television, most recently designing costumes for an immersive film-noir ASICS sneaker commercial. Kate’s work has been shown at The Public Theater, NY City Center, Ars Nova, Spoletto Festival USA, Grand Palais Paris, 3LD, La Mama, HERE Arts Center, Walt Disney Concert Hall, REDCAT, Prototype Opera Festival, Honor Fraser gallery, Prague Quadrennial, and the Tribeca Film Festival. MFA: California Institute of the Arts. katefry.com
Stephen Strawbridge (Lighting Designer) has lighting designed over 200 productions On- and Off-Broadway and at most major regional theatre and opera companies across the US. Internationally, his work has been seen in Bergen, Copenhagen, The Hague, Hong Kong, Linz, Lisbon, Munich, Naples, Sao Paulo, Stratford-upon-Avon (RSC), Stockholm, Vienna, and Wroclaw. Recent: Richard II, Hamlet (The Old Globe); Happy Days (Theatre for a New Audience); Smart People (Long Wharf Theatre); Master Harold and the Boys(Signature Theatre, Drama Desk nomination); Scenes from Court Life (Yale Rep); Turn Me Loose (Westside Arts); Pericles (TFANA). Dance: Pilobolus Dance Theatre, Alison Chase performance and others. Nominations and awards: American Theatre Wing, Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle, Connecticut Critics Circle, Dallas-Fort Worth Theater Critics Forum, Drama Desk, Helen Hayes, Henry Hewes Design, and Lucille Lortel. Stephen is the Co-chair of the Design Department at Yale School of Drama and resident lighting designer at Yale Repertory Theatre.
Ryan Rumery (Sound Designer) is a musician, composer, and producer. His music is in the films Awake: A Dream from Standing Rock (Tribeca Fillm Festival 2017), How to Let Go of the World (And Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change) (Sundance 2016, HBO), and City of Gold (Sundance, SXSW 2015). Recent theatrical scores: End of Longing (MCC), The Emperor Jones (Irish Rep), Between Riverside and Crazy (Atlantic/Second Stage), and Fool For Love (Broadway). Ryan, Christian Frederickson, and the late Jason Noble recently released their album The Painted Bird – Amidst. Ryan was also the Sound Consultant for Sufjan Stevens’ Round Up at the Barbican and Edinburgh International Festival. He recently produced three albums for Jeremy Bass: The Greatest Fire, Winter Bare, and New York in Spring, the title track from which won the John Lennon Songwriting Prize. ryanrumery.com
Michael F. Toomey (Fight Choreographer) This is Michael’s first season with Dorset Theatre Festival. He lives in Brooklyn, NY, with his wife Sarah and son August, where he is the co-artistic director for The Humanist Project. He has been a Shakespeare & Company member since 1998 and is a founding member of Split Knuckle Theatre, which devises new works of theatre and currently tours the hit show Endurance throughout the world, performing in Bangkok, Athens and Paris. He directs, devises and choreographs shows throughout the country, including Titus, Julius Caesar and Alice In Wonderland. Theatre: An Iliad, Macbeth, Scapin, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare & Company); Francis Goes To War, Macbeth (The Humanist Project ); Endurance, The Pearl (Split Knuckle Theatre). He is a graduate from LISPA (London International School of Performing Arts) and holds an MFA in Lecoq-based theatre from Naropa University. michaelftoomey.com
Sarah Perlin* (Stage Manager) is thrilled to join Dorset Theatre Festival for their 40th anniversary season. Broadway: All The Way with Bryan Cranston, R+H Cinderella. NYC: Actors Studio Drama School Rep Seasons 2016 and 2017, Christmas Rose (Carnegie Hall), NYC Premier of Pippi Longstocking (Kota Productions), World Premieres of Sarazad and The Monster-King (Canal Park Playhouse), and Better Left Unsaid (Center Stage). Workshops: Warped, Spongebob Squarepants, Robin Hood – The Final Adventure, Secondhand Lions. Regional: Ain’t Misbehavin’ (The Gateway), The Turn of the Screw (Palm Beach Opera), Die Fledermaus (Opera Saratoga), Seussical Jr. (Boston Children’s Theater), Hairspray (Eldorado Casino, NV). International: Ivan Jacob’s Phantom of the Opera (Jakarta, Indonesia). TV/Film: “Gypsy” (Netflix, upcoming), “Madam Secretary,” “Nurse Jackie,” “How to be Single,” and “Royal Pains.” Love to her family, dedicated to MKH. Sarah is a proud member of AEA and IATSE 306. She resides in NYC.
Judy Bowman, CSA (Casting Director) for DTF: Way of the World, I Hate Hamlet, Outside Mullingar, The Whipping Man, The Whore and Mr. Moore, Merton and the Movies and The Hollow. Recent theater includes: Danai Gurira’s Familiar(Woolly Mammoth), Abigail/1702(Merrimack Rep/Tlaloc Rivas), Nibbler(Rattlestick/Amoralists). FILM/TV: Hurricane Bianca(Rattlestick/Amoralists), Lost Cat Corona, Gold Star and “The Big Dogs” TV series. Adjunct Asst. Professor at Columbia University Film School’s MFA program. judybowmancasting.com.
*Member of Actors Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States
See American Buffalo star Treat Williams as the subject of ARTManchester’s Al Hirschfeld pop-up gallery! Click here for more information about the display.
“Theater Review: American Buffalo, Dorset Theatre Festival” – Seven Days VT
“American Buffalo at Dorset” – Berkshire On Stage
“Mamet’s American Buffalo Rumbles Through Dorset” – Bennington Banner
“Humor, Humanity Revealed in American Buffalo” – Rutland Herald
“Treat Williams in American Buffalo at Dorset Theatre Festival” – WAMC’s The Roundtable
“Regional Revival of American Buffalo Comes to Dorset” – Berkshire Eagle
“American Buffalo” – Theatre Talk
“Oliver Palmer Runs With the Big Dogs in David Mamet’s American Buffalo in Dorset” – Berkshire On Stage
“Treat Williams in Dorset Production of American Buffalo” – The Daily Gazette
“Chekhov for Today: David Mamet’s American Buffalo” – Rutland Herald
“For Stephen Adly Guirgis, the Long Road Back to a First Love: Acting” – The New York Times
“Actor Treat Williams Returns to Theatre Roots on Vermont Stage” –WABC
“Dorset Theatre Festival 2017 Season” –More Theatre Talk
“Photo Coverage: Treat Williams and Company Prepare for Dorset Theatre Festival’s American Buffalo” – Broadway World
“Premiere, Stars Celebrate Dorset’s 40th” –Rutland Herald
“Stephen Adly Guirgis to Return to the Stage at Dorset Theatre Festival” – The New York Times
Dates & Times
Approximate Run Time: 2 hrs, plus a 10-minute intermission.
Please be advised this production includes strong language throughout, violence, and the use of a gun prop.
Thurs. 8/24 7:30 PM (Preview)
Fri. 8/25 7:30 PM (Opening with reception to follow)
Sat. 8/26 2 PM & 7:30 PM
Sun. 8/27 2 PM
Wed. 8/30 2 PM & 7:30 PM
Thurs. 8/31 7:30 PM
Fri. 9/1 7:30 PM
Sat. 9/2 2 PM & 7:30 PM
Onstage Seating FAQs
To select an onstage seat for a more immersive, unique American Buffalo experience, please call the box office at 802-867-2223 ext. 2
American Buffalo will be performed with a stage layout that accommodates audience seating onstage, as well as in the traditional house.
Q. If I buy an “Onstage” seat, will I be sitting on the stage facing the audience and only seeing the back of the action?
A. No! With this “theatre in the round” configuration, the stage will resemble a sports stadium: the action takes place in the middle of the crowd. Actors will play to all 4 sides, so no one is cut off from the action, and one section of seating won’t be obviously elevated above another.
Q. Are the “Onstage” seats more expensive?
A. No! Onstage seats are priced the same as a regular Center section seat.
Q. Are the “Onstage” chairs the same type of chairs as those in the Center/Side sections?
A. Yes! The “Onstage” chairs have simply been moved from select rows in the theatre: they are the same red plush seats as found elsewhere in the space.
Q. Are the “Onstage” seats ADA accessible?
A. Unfortunately, the “Onstage” seats are not ADA accessible. We recommend patrons who need wheelchair or other physical assistance call the box office at (802)-867-2223 ext. 2 for the best ADA seating options per performance.