WTF presents “The Roommate” with S. Epatha Merkerson and Deirdre O’Connell at the Clark


Roommates: S. Epatha Merkerson (l) and Deirdre O’Connell (r).

Roommates: S. Epatha Merkerson (l) and Deirdre O’Connell (r).


WTF Artistic Director Mandy Greenfield Presents Season Sneak Peek at Clark Art Institute

The Williamstown Theatre Festival (WTF) and Artistic Director Mandy Greenfield present a free reading of The Roommate with S. Epatha Merkerson and Deirdre O’Connell  on Thursday, June 2 at 2:30 pm at the Clark Art Institute. The reading is followed by a conversation with Greenfield about the process of work on new plays as well as WTF’s exciting summer 2016 season. The event will be held in the Michael Conforti Pavilion of the Clark Center.

While the event is free, reservations are required. Visit or call 413 458 0524 to make a reservation. The reading begins promptly at 2:30 pm and runs for approximately two hours. Late arrivals will not be seated.

Jen Silverman

Jen Silverman

The Roommate, written by Jen Silverman and directed by Mike Donahue, tells the story of empty-nested and husbandless Sharon, who takes on a roommate in her Iowa City home. She gets a bit more than she bargained for when Robyn, a beat poet from the Bronx, moves in. As an unexpected friendship ignites between these two very different women, The Roommate asks us to consider the surprises—both troubling and thrilling—we face when we open ourselves up to new experiences late in life.

“I’m grateful to our colleagues at the Clark for inviting us to work in their stunning space as we gear up for a season of bold, new work on our stages,” Greenfield said. “I look forward to giving audiences a peek into our new play development process and our plans for the Festival this summer, as well as the reading of Jen’s play by two sensational American actresses.”

S. Epatha Merkerson, a native of Michigan, is best known for her role as the smart and shrewd Lieutenant Anita Van Buren on the long-running TV crime drama Law & Order. She currently stars in the NBC series Chicago Med. She received the Emmy, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild award for Outstanding Lead Actress ina Miniseries or a Movie for Lackawanna Blues.Merkerson has a long list of Broadway and off-Broadway credits and honors that include Drama Desk Award and Tony Award nominations for Best Actress for her portrayal of Lola in the 2008 Broadway revival of Williams Inge’s Come Back, Little Sheba and her performance in the August Wilson play The Piano Lesson (1995); a 1992 Obie Award for her performance in I’m Not Stupid; and a 1998 Helen Hayes Award for her starring role in the John Henry Redwood play The Old Settler.

Deirdre O’Connell was honored with a 2015 Lilly Award for contributions made to American theatre by women. Recent theatre credits include The Way West(Labyrinth – Steppenwolf), Judy (Page 73), Little Children Dream of God (Roundabout), By the Water (Manhattan Theatre Club, 2015 Lortel Nomination); Scarcity (Rattlestick); A Family For All Occasions (Labyrinth); The Vandal (The Flea Theater); Magic/Bird (Longacre Theatre); Circle Mirror Transformation (Obie and Drama Desk Awards; Playwrights Horizons); In the Wake (Los Angeles Ovation Award, Richard Seff Actor’s Equity Award, Lortel nomination; The Public Theater and Mark Taper Forum). Film credits include The Boy DownstairsGabrielSt. VincentIn the Radiant CitySynecdoche, NY, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. TV includes recurring roles on The PathNurse Jackie and The Affair. She received an Obie for Sustained Excellence of Performance.

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