Sternhagen to headline New Works Festival

Frances Sternhagen

Veteran character actress Frances Sternhagen is returning to Florida Stage next month to headline the fifth annual 1st Stage New Works Festival.

Sternhagen is instantly recognizable from scores of roles on stage, in film and on television, most recently playing Kyra Sedgwick’s mother on The Closer. She starred in 2001 in Florida Stage’s The Exact Center of the Universe. She was nominated for a Tony Award seven times and won for The Good Doctor and The Heiress.

Sternhagen will participate in the staged reading of a work in progress by famed playwright Israel Horovitz at 8 p.m. Feb. 5. The play, Beverley, is a romantic comedy focusing on three septuagenarians: Beverley, who came to America from England as a war-bride; Zelly, her fisherman-husband, and Archie, the Brit she jilted 53 years earlier. The prolific Horovitz (The Indian Wants the Bronx) wrote last season’s Florida Stage drama Sins of the Mother.

Sternhagen will also be featured 7 p.m. Feb. 4 in an interview with Florida Stage Producing Director Louis Tyrrell on stage in the Persson Hall at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts.

The Feb. 3-6 festival encompasses readings of seven works being fine-tuned by their authors. In the past, the playwrights have made changes that resulted in the works being mounted at Florida Stage and other regional theaters across the nation.

1st Stage Festival passes are available as well as individual tickets for individual events by calling 561-585-3433 or going online at

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