June 5, 2006

Sarah Bernhardt Solo Show

Filed under: Listings,Press Releases — offoffbway @ 9:33 pm
Mindy Nirenstein Channels the Spirit of Sarah Bernhardt in the Solo Show
I, SARAH – For Three Performances Only This Month!
“Nirenstein creates a fascinating portrayal of the shrewd, eccentric and sublimely romantic Madame Bernhardt…I, Sarah provides a wealth of information about the life and career of Bernhardt, as well as revealing the political events of the era”. (The Register-Guard)

After a series of sold-out regional productions Mindy Nirenstein brings Robert W. Cabell’s acclaimed one-woman show I, SARAH, to New York for three performances only to launch a national tour. Portraying “The Divine Sarah Bernhardt,” (a title bestowed by Oscar Wilde), Nirenstein presents a warts-and-all look at the woman who was the greatest actress of her generation and, to many, the greatest of all time. Written by Robert W. Cabell and directed by Joe Zingo, the show will be performed at the Where Eagles Dare Theatre, located at 347 West 36th Street, from June 22nd – June 24th.

Mark Twain once said “there are five kinds of actresses: bad actresses, fair actresses, good actresses, great actresses and then there is Sarah Bernhardt.” And to many people, that was no lie. From her first major role at the age of 27, until her death more than half a century later, Sarah reigned supreme on stages throughout the world. Her personal life was just as famous, with her extravagant lifestyle, titillating love affairs consisting of the “who’s who” of Europe, and a son born out of wedlock by a Belgian prince. Her taste for the exotic and erotic ran the gamut of pet tigers and pythons to a penchant for sleeping in a coffin.

As the show begins in 1923 Sarah lies dying, covered in wildflowers, as half a million Parisians circle her home in a candlelight vigil. In the throes of a coma, Bernhardt’s spirit rises to look back on her life; one which often mirrored the great roles she portrayed. Interspersed with these recollections, Nirenstein brings to life some of the performances Bernhardt was famous for, including works by Victor Hugo (Ruy Blas), Racine (Phaedra), Alexander Dumas (La Dame aux Camilias), and Victorien Sardou (Fedora), among others. Most importantly, Nirenstein brings forth the fiery essence of this indomitable woman, who for over 50 years had the world at her feet.

Mindy Nirenstein, who began her acting career at the age of 8, counts among her favorite roles and shows Puck in “Midsummer Nights Dream,” Scapin in “Scapin,” as well as “As You Like It,” “The Tempest,” “The Three Cuckolds” and “Taming of the Shrew.” Other roles include Dorothy Brock in “42nd Street,” Mary Tyrone in “Long Days Journey into Night,” Harper in “Angels in America,” Corday in “Marat/Sade,” The Nurse in “Romeo & Juliet,” Ophelia in “Hamlet,” Helga in “Kindertransport,” Bea in “A View From The Bridge,” The Narrator in “Rocky Horror” and the West Coast Premiere of New York playwright Doug Stones “Sealed For Freshness.” She considers playing Sarah Bernhardt her most exciting and challenging role to date.

Robert W. Cabell’s (Author/Composer/Lyricist) previous Off-Broadway productions include the Sarah Bernhardt Trilogies in 2000 & 2001 at the Trilogy Theater, the 1994 musical “Two Hearts Over Easy” at the Actors Playhouse, and the 1990 critically acclaimed Off-Broadway production of” Pretty Faces,” directed by Gene Foote at The Actor’s Outlet Theater. In 2004, after a sold-out regional theater production, “Pretty Faces” was updated and revived for the very first New York Musical Theater Festival, NYMF 20004, with a cast CD released in 2006. In 2000, Cabell’s “Z – The Masked Musical of Zorro” received its world premiere production, based on his 1999 Celebrity Concept CD which featured an all-star cast that included Pop Icon Deborah Gibson, Menudo’s Ruben Gomez, EMI Solo Recording Star Roberto Blades, and a host of Broadway veterans that included Phyllis Newman, Kaye Ballard, Marc Kudisch, Christiane Noll, Rob Evan, Sean McDermott, Jeff McCarthy, and Lynn Halverson. In 1984, Mr. Cabell was chosen out of over 200 applicants to be one of the very first Librettist/Composers to participate in the Musical Theater Workshop for his musicals Dragon Myth and Saccharine, which both received concert presentations at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center.

Running from June 22nd to June 24th, I, SARAH will be performed at the Where Eagles Dare Theatre, located at 347 West 36th Street (between 8th & 9th Avenues) on the Ground Floor. Show times are Thursday-Saturday at 8pm. Tickets are $25.00, $20.00 for seniors and $18.00 for students. Reservations: 212-868-4444 or www.smarttix.com. Additional information on the show can be found at www.Sarah.BernhardtPlays.com.




Performed by Mindy Nirenstein

Author/Composer/Lyricist: Robert W. Cabell

Director: Joe Zingo

Executive Producer/Managing Director: Jim Roberts


On her deathbed in 1923, Sarah Bernhardt, the greatest actress of her generation, who captivated the world for over half a century, looks back on her fabulous career on the stage and her tempestuous love affairs with the Royalty of Europe. Through it all there is never a trace of regret from this woman who, through all her ups and downs, lived life to the fullest and on her own terms. Running for three nights only, the Divine Sarah (a title bestowed on her by Oscar Wilde) is portrayed by Mindy Nirenstein, who brings Robert W. Cabell’s show to New York audiences.


Where Eagles Dare Theatre

347 West 36th Street (between 8th & 9th Avenues)

Ground Floor


June 22nd- June 24th

Thursday-Saturday at 8pm


$25.00, Seniors: $20.00, Students: $18.00


212-868-4444 or www.smarttix.com




Take the A, C, E, 1, 2, 3 train to 34th Street

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