Alan Rickman doesn’t appear on the New York stage very often, so when he does it’s a cause to pay attention. One of the few great English actors who hasn’t gotten a well-deserved “Sir” in front of his name yet, Rickman has returned to the New York stage in Seminar, which also features Jerry O’Connell.
Though British, Rickman has a deep affinity for the Broadway stage than London’s West End. He explains, “I love working in New York theater. … It is very demanding, but it’s good to be in a city where you feel that theater is actually part of the life of the city. You know, London is so sprawling, and you can sometimes forget that anybody else is on a stage anywhere else. But here, it’s, you know, your friends and neighbors.”
So what does Rickman, who has appeared in dozens of movies, enjoy so much about acting for the stage? It’s all about the interplay between the actors, he says.
“I’m very aware that when one is acting in the theater, you do become kind of animal about it. And you’re reliant on instincts rather than tact a lot of the time. So the rehearsal room does become a bit of a marketplace, and new plays risk everybody’s sensibilities. That’s the whole point about them. But, you know, hopefully, ultimately, [Seminar playwright Theresa Rebeck is] happy because she knows we’re all there because we respect her writing so much.” Read more
After playing lash-tongued misanthrope Severus Snape in the last installment of the Harry Potter franchise, Alan Rickman plans to return to Broadway to play a manipulative writing instructor in “Seminar,” a dark comedy by Theresa Rebeck.
Rickman is hardly a stranger to the stage. The British actor made his Broadway debut in 1987 portraying Valmont in “Les Liasions Dangereuses,” garnering a Tony Award nomination in the category of “Best Actor” for his performance.
Rebeck’s play will mark Rickman’s first return to a Broadway theater since 2002, when his lead performance in Noel Coward’s “Private Lives” revival earned him another Tony nomination. His work in theater includes eight Royal Shakespeare Company productions.
In “Seminar,” Rickman will play Leonard, a “brilliant but unpredictable” writer whose international reputation as a literary legend precedes him. The four young writers in the seminar of the title are thrilled to be in his class.