Blog Hollywood Star Returns to the Stage at ATC
Dec 29, 2022

Hollywood Star Returns to the Stage at ATC

Mimi Kennedy Will Lead Award-Winning Production Pru Payne

Arizona Theatre Company is excited to announce that Mimi Kennedy, best known for her roles on the television series Mom and Dharma & Greg, will be returning to the stage for the first time in over a decade as the title character in ATC’s world premiere of Pru Payne by Steven Drukman this spring. Audiences will follow the witty intellectual Prudence “Pru” Payne as her memory begins to fade and she questions preconceived notions about her identity and discovers unexpected love.

“I always want to participate in stories that affirm life in some way,” Kennedy said, “and I am thrilled to play an intellectual. This role is a perfect match for me after seven decades in the industry searching for her. It is a gift on every level.”

Kennedy has been a recognizable onscreen presence in both TV and Film since the 1970s. Her most notable film roles include Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris, the political satire In the Loop opposite James Gandolfini, and the cult comedy favorite The Five Year Engagement with Emily Blunt and Jason Segel. Television viewers will also recognize Kennedy from recent roles on The CW’s In The Dark, Netflix’s Grace & Frankie, and ABC’s The Goldbergs. Her professional acting career began on the stage opposite comedy legend Sid Caesar in Neil Simon’s Last of The Red Hot Lovers; followed soon after by her Broadway debut as a cast member of the original Broadway production of Grease.

“I have wanted to return to theater for more than a decade,” Kennedy said. “This layered role of a brilliant woman losing her memory and finding emotional connections is profoundly moving to me. I sobbed after reading this script and knew that I must do it. I am happy to be at Arizona Theatre Company, and especially in Phoenix and Tucson where I have good memories with old friends.”

Pru Payne is the second show under the leadership of ATC’s new Kasser Family Artistic Director Matt August. “We are thrilled that Mimi Kennedy is going to leave her indelible imprint on this character, which has been so brilliantly written by Steven Drukman. With new-play maestro Sean Daniels guiding the process, Pru is sure to be a celebrated addition to America’s rich tradition of iconic leading ladies.”

Pru Payne is the 2022 winner of the Edgerton Foundation New Play Award and was written by Pulitzer Prize nominee Steven Drukman. It is a remarkable, funny, and emotional journey about the evolution of love and identity in the face of memory loss that will be directed by Sean Daniels.