CBS Sunday Morning correspondent Martha Teichner goes behind Straight Line Crazy, David Hare’s new play starring Ralph Fiennes as historic figure Robert Moses.
Fiennes said to Teichner, "What I like about the play is the provocation of it, is the provocation of a man who challenges you to like him. He does stuff for people, he's also done terrible stuff to people."
Moses was once one of the most powerful men in New York, the "master builder" of many new parks, bridges, and more than 600 miles of expressways. His career spanned from the 1920s to the mid-1950s, during which he manipulated many, including politicians, with a mix of charm and intimidation to build the world as he saw it. Oftentimes, his vision excluded and displaced African-American communities, Latiné communities, and others. His controversial career is captured in the play by two of its most decisive moments, and the questionable legacy that has followed.
Teichner also spoke with Robert Caro, who wrote a Pulitzer-winning biography about Moses titled The Power Broker. Caro, who interviewed Moses seven times, shared with Teichner, "When you were in his presence, one of the things you saw was genius. One of the other things you saw was 'don't get in my way.'"
"The city that we're living in today, for better and for worse, is still his city," Caro stated.
The show, which transferred from London's The Bridge, opens its Off-Broadway run at The Shed October 26. Previews began October 18 for the run through December 18. Fiennes is joined on stage by Aisha Bailey, David Bromley, Al Coppola, Andrew Lewis, Alana Maria, Guy Paul, Krysten Peck, Judith Roddy, Helen Schlesinger, Adam Silver, Mary Stillwaggon Stewart, and Danny Webb.
The production also has set and costume design by Bob Crowley, lighting design by Jessica Hung Han Yun, sound design by George Dennis, music composition by George Fenton, associate design by Jaimie Todd, and casting by Robert Sterne. The production stage manager is Cynthia Cahill.
Check out production photos of Straight Line Crazy below.