Gay Identity, Race and Family Deepen The Mystery of Love and Sex, Opening Off-Broadway Tonight | Playbill

News Gay Identity, Race and Family Deepen The Mystery of Love and Sex, Opening Off-Broadway Tonight Academy Award nominee Diane Lane and Tony nominee Tony Shalhoub return to the New York Stage in Bathsheba Doran's The Mystery of Love & Sex, which officially opens Off-Broadway March 2 at Lincoln Center Theater's Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater.

Sam Gold (Fun Home, The Flick) directs the four-person drama that features Lane (The Cherry Orchard, Sweet Bird of Youth, "Unfaithful") and Shalhoub ("Monk," Act One, Golden Boy) as a couple whose relationship is threatened when a series of secrets about their past is revealed.

Diane Lane and Gayle Rankin Photo by T. Charles Erickson

They are joined by Gayle Rankin (Cabaret, Tribes) as their college-aged daughter and Mamoudou Athie (Generations) as the longtime family friend with whom she begins to explore a romantic relationship.

Previews began Feb. 5.

The play marks a rare return for Lane, who hasn't appeared on the New York stage since 1978's Runaways. "The stage is terrible for adrenaline junkies," she told Playbill recently. "I mean, you can jump out of a plane, but that still doesn't have the level of critique waiting for you." Read the full interview here.

Here's how The Mystery of Love & Sex is billed: "Deep in the American South, Charlotte and Jonny have been best friends since they were nine. She's Jewish, he's Christian, he's black, she's white. Their differences intensify their connection until sexual desire complicates everything in surprising, compulsive ways. An unexpected love story about where souls meet and the consequences of growing up."

The production has sets by Andrew Lieberman, costumes by Kaye Voyce, lighting by Jane Cox and original music and sound by Daniel Kluger.

Doran is the playwright of Kin. She also serves as a writer-producer of "Masters of Sex" and previously "Boardwalk Empire."


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