Chip Zien and Noah Robbins will star in the Public Theater's world premiere of The Twenty-Seventh Man, a new play by Nathan Englander. Directed by Barry Edelstein, the off-Broadway show will begin previews November 7 and open on Sunday, November 18. The limited engagement runs through December 9.
In addition to Zien as Vasily Kornisky and Robbins as Pinchas Pelvotis, the cast includes Byron Jennings as The Agent in Charge, Happy Anderson as Guard, Daniel Oreskes as Moishe Bretzky and Ron Rifkin as Yevgeny Zunser.
Based on Englander’s short story of the same name, The Twenty-Seventh Man is set in a Soviet prison in 1952, where Stalin’s secret police have rounded up twenty-six prolific literary figures, as well as one unknown writer. The young writer's arrest baffles the rest of the incarcerated as they debate politics, culture, identity and their duties as writers during troubled times.
The play will feature scenic design by Michael McGarty, costume design by Katherine Roth, lighting design by Russell H. Champa and sound design by Darron L. West.
Zien originated the role of the Baker in the Broadway production of Into the Woods, recently appearing in the Public’s summer revival at the Delacorte Theater. Robbins has appeared on Broadway in Arcadia and Brighton Beach Memoirs.
Anderson appeared in the Public's Shakespeare in the Park production of The Merchant of Venice, later reprising his role on Broadway. Jennings also appeared in both productions of The Merchant of Venice, as well as Broadway stagings of Inherit the Wind, Noises Off and Is He Dead?. Oreskes appeared at the Public in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Henry V, Troilus and Cressida and others. His numerous Broadway credits include The Miracle Worker, Aida and Billy Elliot. Rifkin is a successful stage and screen star who appeared in the Public’s production of The Art of Dining, as well as on Broadway in The Goodbye People, Cabaret and A Month in the Country.