World Premiere of Camp David, Featuring Ron Rifkin and Hallie Foote, Opens April 3 at Arena Stage

By Carey Purcell
03 Apr 2014

Hallie Foote
Hallie Foote
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

The world premiere of Pulitzer Prize winner Lawrence Wright's historical drama Camp David officially opens April 3 after previews that began March 21 at Arena Stage.

Directed by artistic director Molly Smith, the production continues through May 4 in the Kreeger Theater.

The cast features Tony Award winner Ron Rifkin (Cabaret, Wrong Mountain) as Menachem Begin, Emmy Award winner Richard Thomas ("The Waltons," An Enemy of the People) as Jimmy Carter, Tony Award nominee Hallie Foote (Dividing the Estate, The Old Friends) as Rosalynn Carter and Egyptian actor and activist Khaled Nabawy ("Kingdom of Heaven," "Fair Game") as Anwar Sadat.

Here's how the production is billed: "Based on true events surrounding the 1978 Camp David Accords, the play follows the 13-day meeting between President Jimmy Carter, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat as they attempted to create the impossible: peace in the Middle East."



"To say this is one of the most important stories to put on our stage is a complete understatement," Smith said in a previous statement. "It’s important to be reminded of a moment — now 35 years ago — when people from very different cultures and perspectives risked their lives and careers and put themselves on the line personally, intellectually and spiritually by sitting down to forge an agreement. Through Lawrence’s brilliant script, this incredible cast and with the incomparable access and research provided through Gerald Rafshoon, audiences will viscerally experience the complex and deeply human process of these pivotal negotiations."

"Washington is the perfect place for Camp David to begin its life, and especially now, when the lessons of that historic moment are so resonant," Wright added. "Molly has been an ideal partner on this play. To begin with, she had the courage to commission what was a very ambitious project, and she brought her energy, judgment and insight into the process from the very beginning. It's been a very happy experience for me to be working with the team at Arena."

The creative team for Camp David includes set designer Walt Spangler, costume designer Paul Tazewell, lighting designer Pat Collins, sound designer David Van Tieghem, projection designer Jeff Sugg and dialect coach Anita Maynard-Losh. Susan R. White is stage manager, and Michael D. Ward is assistant stage manager.

Visit arenastage.org for more information.