Tony Kiser Theater: 305 West 43rd Street

Paint it red. So begins Lydia's wild idea to invigorate her Rust Belt town. But when a whip-smart entrepreneur co-opts her scheme, a precarious rivalry is born. A battle for the town's soul ensues, causing its obsessive mayor, its defiant matriarch, and the rest of its residents to question who they are and where they're headed.


Cardinal is the Benjamin Maurice Rosen Commission for Second Stage Theater.
This production is supported by a generous grant from the Laurents/Hatcher Foundation. 
Photos: Anna Chlumsky by John Lamparski / Adam Pally by Fred Hayes



GREG PIERCE (Playwright) grew up in Shelburne, Vermont. His play Slowgirl was the inaugural play of Lincoln Center's Claire Tow Theater (LCT3). It was subsequently produced by Steppenwolf Theatre and the Geffen Playhouse, among others. His play, Her Requiem, a Lincoln Center Theater commission, was also produced by LCT3. The Landing, a musical written with composer John Kander, premiered at the Vineyard Theatre in NYC. His second musical with Kander, Kid Victory, was co-produced by Signature Theatre in Virginia and the Vineyard Theatre.  The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, co-written with director Stephen Earnhart, based on the novel by Haruki Murakami, premiered at the Edinburgh International Festival, and went on to play the Singapore Arts Festival. The Quarry, with music by Greg's brother Randal Pierce was commissioned and produced by Vermont Stage Company. Fellow Travelers, an opera he wrote with composer Gregory Spears, based on the novel by Thomas Mallon, premiered at Cincinnati Opera. Greg has received fellowships from the Edward F. Albee Foundation, Yaddo, The Djerassi Institute, New York Public Library, and Baryshnikov Arts CenterCenter. He currently holds a commission from Manhattan Theatre Club/Sloan Foundation. His work has been developed with Naked Angels, The New Group, Atlantic Theatre Company, Asia Society, the Rattlestick Theater, and the Public Theater's Under the Radar festival. He has a BA from Oberlin College and an MFA in Creative Writing from Warren Wilson College. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild and the WGA.

KATE WHORISKEY (Director) most recently directed Pulitzer Prize-winning Sweat at Studio 54. Her work has been seen on Broadway, off-Broadway, and regionally. In New York, she has directed at Circle in the Square, the Public, Second Stage, Manhattan Theatre Club, Lincoln Center Theater, the Vineyard Theatre, Theatre for A New Audience, and Playwrights Horizons. She has directed the premieres of Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel, Fabulation, Ruined, and Sweat; Julia Cho’s Aubergine and The Piano Teacher; Greg Pierce’s Her Requiem, among others. She was nominated for a Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel for her work on Ruined. She has worked regionally at The Goodman Theatre, South Coast Rep, The Geffen, the American Repertory Theatre, the Shakespeare Theatre, the Huntington, Baltimore Center Stage, the Arena Stage, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Perseverance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Sundance Theatre Lab, The Fisher Center, and The Eugene O’Neill Center. Internationally, she directed Magdalena at the Chatelet Theatre in Paris and Teatro Municipal de Sao Paolo.



BECKY ANN BAKER (Nancy Prenchel) Becky received a 2017 Emmy Nomination for her work in the final season of “Girls” on HBO.  Other TV: “Freaks and Geeks,” “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” “Last Week Tonight,” “Gotham,” “The Good Wife,” and “Nurse Jackie.”  Broadway: Good People, All My Sons, Assassins, Titanic, A Streetcar Named Desire, Best Little Whorehouse. Off-Broadway: The Hairy Ape, Peer Gynt, Dear Elizabeth, Barbecue, and more.  Films include Starbright, The End of the Tour, 23 Blast, Hope Springs, Nights in Rodanthe, Men in Black and A Simple Plan.

ANNA CHLUMSKY (Lydia Lensky) is a Gracie Allen Award winner and an Emmy, Critics’ Choice and SAG Ensemble award nominee for her portrayal of Amy Brookheimer on HBO’s Emmy winning comedy “Veep.” She became a household name when she starred alongside Macaulay Culkin in the 1991 film My Girl. Other notable film credits include The End of the Tour, Bert and Arnie’s Guide to Friendship, In The Loop, The Good Guy, Blood Car, My Girl 2, Gold Diggers, The Glamour Reel Short, and Wait.  She made her Broadway debut in Scott Ellis’ 2015 revival of You Can’t Take It With You. Other theater credits include: Living on Love; 3C; Love, Loss, and What I Wore (Westside Theatre); So Help Me God (Mint Theatre Company); Unconditional (LAByrinth Theater Company); The Fabulous Life of a Size Zero (DR2); Darwin in Malibu (Bay Street Theatre); The Butcherhouse Chronicles (Summer Play Festival); Balm in Gilead (Barefoot Theater Company); Half Life (Flea Theater/Fringe Festival); Iphigenia at Aulis (TimeSpace Productions); Measure for Measure (Astoria Performing Arts Center); No Alarms: Headfullofradio (Vertias Productions); and The Trojan Women (Veritas Productions). Additional television credits include: “Halt and Catch Fire,” “Hannibal,” “White Collar,” “Covert Affairs,” “30 Rock,” and “Law & Order: SVU.” 

ALEX HURT (Nat Prenchel) Broadway: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Off-Broadway: The Whirligig (The New Group), Love, Love, Love (Roundabout), Placebo (Playwrights Horizons), Scenes from a Marriage (NYTW), The Caucasian Chalk Circle (CSC). Regional: Other Desert Cities (Alley); A Behanding in Spokane (SF Playhouse); No Man’s Land, Who Am I This Time (A.R.T.); The Lion in Winter, Othello (Hedgerow). Film: Frankie Keeps Talking, Cut Shoot Kill, The River Why. TV: “Bull,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Elementary.” 

ADAM PALLY (Jeff Torm) is widely known for starring as Max Blum in the ABC cult hit comedy series, “Happy Endings,” and is currently in production on LD Entertainment’s Dog Days, which will be directed by Ken Marino. Through his production company, Clone Wolf, Pally currently serves as an EP on Comedy Central’s “The President Show” and EP on “Los Feliz Daycare” which is in development for Hulu. Clone Wolf is also developing numerous projects for broadcast, cable and new media with ABC Studios. Other television credits include: “Making History” and “The Mindy Project.” He recently completed production on Lionsgate’s Most Likely To Murder. Other film credits include Band Aid, The Little Hours, Joshy, Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life, A.C.O.D. The To Do List, Monogamy, The Sophomore, Taking Woodstock, Solitary Man, and a cameo playing Gary the Cameraman in Iron Man 3. In addition to his acting credits, Pally and his writing partner, Gil Ozeri, recently sold an untitled comedy script to Disney. Pally has been a member of the Upright Citizens Brigade since 2003, and continues to both write and perform sketch comedy. 

STEPHEN PARK  (Li-Wei Chen) is excited to be making his Second Stage debut. Off-Broadway: Aubergine (Playwrights Horizons); The Dumb Waiter, Ivanov (NAATCO); The New Paradigm (Atlantic Theater Company); Aunt Dan and Lemon (The New Group); Paternity (Cherry Lane Theater). Regional: East of Eden (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); A Language of Their Own, Big Hunk o’ Burnin’ Love (East West Players). Film: Snowpiercer, A Serious Man, State of Play, Desperate Measures, Fargo, Falling Down, Toys, Kindergarten Cop, Do the Right Thing. TV: “Person of Interest,” “The Mindy Project,” “Believe,” “Elementary,” “White Collar,” “Law & Order,” “Mad About You,” “Friends,” “In Living Color.”

EUGENE YOUNG  (Jason Chen) NYC credits: Geek! and Alice in Slasherland (Vampire Cowboys), Twelfth Night (Arclight Theater/Leviathan Lab). Regional credits: Alice in Slasherland (Syracuse Red House), Tiger Style! (The O’Neill Theatre Center). Television credits: “Jane the Virgin” (CW), “Veep” (HBO), “Criminal Minds” (CBS), “Revenge” (ABC), “Unforgettable” (CBS). Eugene is also a part of Ma-Yi Theatre Company’s Writer’s Lab.