A Reading of Two Mailers
Paul Sorvino & Tanna Frederick
A new play by
Ronald K. Fried
Norman Mailer and John Buffalo Mailer’s
The Big Empty
Directed by Michelle Danner
March 15th at 8pm
Ticket price $15 dollars
“Two Mailers” is a new play by Ronald K. Fried inspired by “The Big Empty,” a book of conversations between legendary author Norman Mailer and his youngest son, the journalist and playwright John Buffalo Mailer. The father-son dialogue covers politics, sex, pot, and morality–and ranges from the personal to the political. The play moves back and forth in time between the 2002 father-son sessions and John Buffalo’s present-day encounter with a former girlfriend who’s interviewing him for an article about his father’s legacy. As John Buffalo is forced to defend his father’s controversial life and work, we flash back to intimate moments between John Buffalo and his aging father. We also see the most storied–and notorious–incidents in Norman Mailer’s life, including outrageous moments from his campaign for Mayor of New York City; his encounter with feminists in New York’s Town Hall; and his embattled press conference following his testimony in the murder trial of John Henry Abbott, a man Mailer helped to free from prison. Along the way, we hear excerpts from Mailer’s major works and personal letters. This is the first play by Ronald K. Fried, the author of two novels and one work of non-fiction. Fried, a 2010 Fellow the Norman Mailer Writers Colony, has written on Mailer for “The Daily Beast” and “The Norman Mailer Review.”
PAUL SORVINO – Has made a solid career of portraying authority figures. He originally had his heart set on a life as an opera singer. He was exposed to dramatic arts while studying at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York. He furthered his studies with Sanford Meisner and eventually made his film debut in Where’s Poppa? (1970).
Sorvino suffered from severe asthma, and worked hard at mastering various breathing techniques to manage the illness. He wrote a best-selling book entitled “How to Become a Former Asthmatic.” He also started the Sorvino Asthma Foundation based in New York City.
Sorvino has appeared in a variety of film, TV and theatrical productions over the the last four decades. He received critical praise for his role in the Broadway play “That Championship Season”, and played the role again in the 1981 film alongside Robert Mitchum and Martin Sheen. Other noteworthy performances during the 1980s and 1990s included a stressed-out police chief in Cruising (1980), Mike Hammer’s cop buddy in I, the Jury (1982), “Lips Manlis” in The Gambler (1974) with James Caan and in a standout performance as mob patriarch “Paul Cicero” in the powerhouse Goodfellas (1990).
Always keeping himself busy, Sorvino has performed in nearly 50 movies just in the past decade, including a dynamic and under-appreciated portrayal of Henry Kissinger in Nixon (1995), as “Fulgencio Capulet” in the updated Romeo + Juliet (1996) and in the Las Vegas thriller The Cooler (2003).
Sorvino is the proud father of Academy Award-winning actress Mira Sorvino.
TANNA FREDERICK – The “M” Word is Tanna Frederick’s fifth onscreen collaboration with independent film maverick Henry Jaglom. She also recently finished a year-long run in N. Richard Nash’s The Rainmaker at the Edgemar Center for the Arts, for which she won the LA Stage Award and the Eddon Award for Best Actress. Other upcoming film projects include Garner, Iowa – on which she pulls double duty as star and producer – and Jaglom’s Ovation, both of which are currently in post production.
An Iowa native who founded – and is still actively involved in – the Iowa Independent Film Festival and the performing and film arts initiative Project Cornlight, Frederick is also passionate about issues in her adopted state of California. In 2007, she founded Project Save Our Surf, a non-profit that’s latest projects include bringing lifesaving water filters to villages in developing nations and providing disadvantaged youth with outdoor experiences and environmental education.
MICHELLE DANNER – Is the founding and artistic director of The Edgemar Center for the Arts a cultural arts center in Santa Monica, CA.
She is a renowned actor, director and award-winning acting coach. Her studio encompasses the following acting techniques: Meisner, Strasberg, Adler, Hagen, Chekhov, & the Stanislavsky Technique.
Michelle Danner works with many A-List actors privately and on set including Chris Rock, Gerard Butler, Seth MacFarlane, Melanie Brown, Jamie Lynn Sigler, Penelope Cruz, Grant Bowler, Michael Pena, Isla Fisher, Common, Salma Hayek, Brian McKnight, James Franco, Marcia Cross, Christian Slater, Catherine Bell, Zooey Deschanel, Gabrielle Union, Justine Wadell, Rick Fox, Kellan Lutz and Michelle Rodriguez among many others.
She has trained personally with Stella Adler, Uta Hagen and managed the Larry Moss Studio for twenty years. She teaches classes at The Michelle Danner Acting Studio www.michelledanner.com and teaches internationally in Toronto, Vancouver, Dubai, Sydney, Paris, South Africa, and New York the Golden Box and auditioning for film and television. Michelle Danner was the acting coach expert on the WB show “The Starlet” and was voted favorite acting coach by Backstage readers. In 2009 she appeared on “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien” giving an acting lesson to Andy Richter. Danner is the founders of the Edgemar Center for the Arts www.edgemarcenter.org and The Edgemar Theatre Group. She raised $1.3 million in which went to the construction of two theatres and an art gallery.
Michelle Danners latest directorial film “Hello Herman” written by john Buffolo Mailler stars Norman Reedus from the “Walking Dead” & “Boondock Saints” & Marta Higareda. The movie premiered at the Hollywood Film Festival and international premiered at the Monaco Charity Film Festival winning the award for socially relevant film. The film opened on June 7, 2013 in nationwide with simultaneous availability on VOD in 100 million homes. The trailer for Hello Herman can be viewed at www.allinfilms.com. Her production company, All in Films, have several film projects in development: You’re on the Air, The Bandit Hound, and The Will To. She has two books coming out in 2014, The Daily Ritual and The Golden Box.
About the Edgemar Center for the Arts