HOLLYWOOD acting legend Sam Shepard is due to make a surprise appearance at a theatre in Glasgow tomorrow tonight to watch a performance of a play he wrote and take part in a free post-show question and answer event with theatre goers.
Shepard will attend the final performance of “True West” at the Citizens Theatre before before a discussion about his play which is a black comedy about the sibling rivalry between two brothers pursuing the American dream.
Shepard is one of America’s most celebrated dramatists with a career spanning 40 years during which he has amassed numerous awards including the Pulitzer prize for Drama for his play Buried Child (1979) and a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in Philip Kaufman’s The Right Stuff (1983).
Shepard, who has been in Derry-Londonderry preparing for the world premiere of his new play A Particle of Dread (Oedipus Variations) which opens next month as part of the Derry Drama Festival 2013, was contacted by True West director Philip Breen and invited to Glasgow.
The actor confirmed he had accepted the invite a few days ago.
Dominic Hill, the theatre’s artistic director, said: “It’s wonderful that we’re able to welcome Sam Shepard to our theatre to see our production of his play True West.
“That he’s been kind enough to take to the stage following the performance to talk about his work is a real coup and I’m excited that Glasgow audiences will have the chance to hear from such a legendary figure whose work as a playwright, actor and director stands as a commentary of contemporary American culture.
“The Citizens Theatre has seen many famous faces tread the boards on our iconic stage, and I’m delighted that we’ll be able to add Sam to that list of stars who have visited our Gorbals home.”
Joyce McMillan, theatre critic and columnist for The Scotsman, described Shepard’s impending appearance tonight as “a major achievement” for the Citizens Theatre.
“For a major American playwright to come and do a question and answer is really a big deal, a major coup.
“Sam Shepard is not only a leading playright, he’s also a film star. He’s such an American hero in his own right who has led such a high-risk artistic life.
“It shows that where there are good productions of great play the authors will often be interested in seeing them.
“This is a very good production of the play. The two brothers between them represent the whole story of America. There is the bloodless “live by the rules” brother and the other one who steals and lives rough in the desert and between them they wreck their mother’s house.”