Academy Award® winner Christopher Plummer plays John Barrymore, a man of colossal talent and contradictions.
Christopher Plummer portrays Sir John Barrymore in "Barrymore," set for Dec. 16 at the Newport Performing Arts Center.

'Barrymore' shines December 16

Academy Award® Winner Christopher Plummer in his most astonishing performance... ever! "Barrymore" is an unforgettable portrayal of legendary actor John Barrymore, a man of colossal talent and contradictions and one of the greatest Shakespearean actors of all time, showing at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16 at the Newport Performing Arts Center. Ron and Sandi Williams are local hosts of this event.
 
Come early for a public talk by the play's author, William Luce, which starts at 1:30 p.m. 
 
Set in 1942, the final year of John Barrymore's life, "Barrymore" takes place on the stage of a Broadway theatre, where the actor is struggling to recreate his performance in the title role of Shakespeare's Richard III. It leads him to look back on the highs and lows of his stunning career and remarkable life. Directed and adapted for the screen by Érik Canuel ("Bon Cop, Bad Cop"), "Barrymore" stars Christopher Plummer in the tour de force film performance of his career. 

“A dazzler of a drunk, full of gab and grief. Fiendishly entertaining and blisteringly sad. Christopher Plummer gives an achingly funny, memorably strong and debonair performance. Be grateful to William Luce, a specialist in biographical dramas (including The Belle of Amherst); he has provided Plummer with the chance to create a portrait of riveting complexity and paradox that finds balletic elegance in a drunken stagger, poetry in a blue joke and churning guts in rarified verse. As fluid, stinging and warming as a Manhattan cocktail.” - The New York Times
 
A special screening of the documentary "Backstage with Barrymore," featuring commentary by Helen Mirren, Julie Andrews and Zoe Caldwell, will follow the performance.
 
"Barrymore" is presented by New York-based alternative content distributors BY Experience, in association with Image Entertainment, and executive producers Steve Kalafer and Peter LeDonne. "Barrymore" is produced by Garth H. Drabinsky. Local support is provided by hosts Ron and Sandi Williams, as well as the Jeannette B. Hofer Fund at the Oregon Community Foundation and the City of Newport. OCCA appreciates the support of its members.
Playwright William Luce will speak prior to the showing of "Barymore" at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16.

About William Luce

William Luce’s play "Barrymore" was originally produced at the Stratford Festival in Ontario, Canada. It opened on September 20, 1996, starring Christopher Plummer as Barrymore. The role of the prompter was played by Michael Mastro. Directing was three-time Tony Award winner Gene Saks. The production then toured several cities in the United States, opening on Broadway at the Music Box Theatre on March 25, 1997. Luce is also the author of "The Belle of Amherst," "Baptiste," "Bronte," and "Lucifer's Child," among other works. He lives and writes on the Oregon coast.
Christopher Plummer stars as the great Shakespearean actor John Barrymore.

More on 'Barrymore'

This play is about John Barrymore, the black sheep of America’s most illustrious acting family. Celebrated for his charisma and matinee idol looks, he was for awhile America’s most popular actor. Famous for his stage roles in Richard III and Hamlet, he also made more than fifty films. But alcoholism soon dissipated his talents, and he became known more for his Falstaffian behavior and outrageous high jinx than for his art. Christopher Plummer won three Best Actor in a Play awards for his portrayal: the Tony Award, the Drama Desk Award and the Outer Critics’ Circle Award.
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