Bay Street: 'The Prompter' to Open Season

The theater's summer season is complete
“The Prompter,” a new comedy by Wade Dooley, above, will open on May 28 at Bay Street.

Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor is doubling down on its commitment to adventurous theatrical programming with the addition of a second world premiere to its 2019 summer lineup. It has just been announced that “The Prompter,” a new comedy written by Wade Dooley and directed by Scott Schwartz, the theater’s artistic director, will open the season on May 28.

Previously announced productions are Alan Fox’s drama “Safe Space,” which is also having its world premiere at Bay Street, and what Mr. Schwartz called “a very visionary revival of ‘Annie Get Your Gun.’ ”

A reading of “The Prompter” was a hit at last year’s New Works Festival at Bay Street. The comedy is about Irene Young, a veteran actress who is returning to the Broadway stage after a 40-year absence. Because she can’t do it alone, the production hires a young actor to be her prompter, and through his eyes the audience gets a funny behind-the-scenes look at Broadway.

An actor as well as a writer, Mr. Dooley has appeared onscreen in “The Last Five Years” and onstage in “La Cage Aux Folles,” “The Roar of the Greasepaint — The Smell of the Crowd,” and “Newsical The Musical,” among others. His writing credits include “Broadway Bares: Rock Hard,” “On Demand,” and “The Diary of a Dancer,” a solo show in which he also starred at the Capital Fringe Festival in Washington, D.C. 

Mr. Schwartz recently directed the world premiere of the new musical “The Prince of Egypt” at both TheatreWorks Silicon Valley in California and Fredericia Teater in Denmark. As a director he has worked on and off Broadway, in major regional theaters across the U.S., and in the U.K. and Japan.

“Safe Space,” which will open on June 25, explores political correctness and the reaction to triggers on campus in America today. When an eminent African-American professor at an elite university faces accusations of racism from a student, the head of the college must intervene, and an explosive chain of events ensues. Jack O’Brien, a winner of three Tony Awards and several Drama Desk awards and a member of the Theater Hall of Fame, will direct.

Sarna Lapine will bring a fresh directorial approach to Irving Berlin’s “Annie Get Your Gun,” the story of the sharpshooter Annie Oakley and her tempestuous romance with her fellow gunslinger, Frank Butler. A country-western bluegrass band will perform the memorable music, which includes “There’s No Business Like Show Business” and “Anything You Can Do.” The musical will run from July 30 through Aug. 25.