Roundabout has just announced a revival of William Inges' Pulitzer-winning Picnic, a 1953 tragedy which hasn't been seen on Broadway since 1994. Previews start December 14, and the play opens on January 13th. Playing Helen will be Ellen Burstyn, the revered stage and screen actress last seen exercising her foulmouthed side on USA's abominable Political Animals.
As bad as that show was, Burstyn is far from abominable. I interviewed her in London last year for Bullett Magazine—them folks for whoms I've been blogging—about her part in Lillian Hellman's The Children's Hour, which she appeared in alongside Keira Knightley and Elisabeth Moss. I happen to dislike Lillian Hellman's tedious melodrama almost as much as Political Animals, but that West End production was enlivened by strong performances, of which Burstyn's was the best.
Besides being a nifty actress, she is a nifty lady, and we discussed Darren Aronofsky, the wonderfulness that is New York City, and why it's important that actors play volleyball together.
Because Bullett has, foolishly, reworked their website so that the old article does not appear, I'll take the opportunity to reissue the interview. Truly, without the following 1,400 words, the Internet would be a cesspit.