Great Performances “Uncle Vanya”


New: Friday, May 7 at 8 p.m.

Marrying the intimacy of the screen with the electricity of live theater, Tony Award nominee Conor McPherson breathes new life into Anton Chekhov’s masterpiece. The drama, set at the turn of the 20th century, is filled with tumultuous frustration, dark humor and hidden passions.

“Uncle Vanya” begins as Sonya and her Uncle Vanya throw their lives into maintaining the crumbling family estate occasionally visited by the radical and inspiring local doctor Astrov. However, when Sonya’s father, Professor Serebryakov, suddenly returns with his restless, alluring new wife, Yelena, long-hidden truths begin to emerge.

Recorded in August 2020 from the Harold Pinter Theatre in London after the production’s sold-out run closed early due to the coronavirus pandemic, the play is directed by Ian Rickson and directed for screen by Ross MacGibbon. Starring Toby Jones in the title role and Richard Armitage as Astrov, the cast also features Rosalind Eleazar as Yelena, Aimee Lou Wood as Sonya, Anna Calder Marshall as Nana, Dearbhla Molloy as Mariya, Roger Allam as Serebryakov and Peter Wight as Telegin.

Throughout its more than 40-year history on PBS, Great Performances has provided an unparalleled showcase of the best in all genres of the performing arts, serving as America’s most prestigious and enduring broadcaster of cultural programming. The series is available for streaming simultaneously on all station-branded PBS platforms, including pbs.org/gperf and the PBS Video app, which is available on iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Chromecast. Great Performances is produced by THIRTEEN Productions LLC for WNET.

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