Monday, October 19, 2015

'As the World Turns' Alum Colleen Zenk Mesmerizes in "Other Desert Cities"

Brenda Withers, Colleen Zenk, Peggy J. Scott, Malachy Cleary and
Davy Raphaely star in "Other Desert Cities" at Hudson Stage Company.
Photo Credit: Sue Coflin/Max Photos
Three-time Emmy Award nominee Colleen Zenk is best known for her 32-year run as Barbara Ryan on As the World Turns. From 1978 to 2010, viewers saw Barbara go from young heroine to town bitch to mother-from-hell, and many places in between. Since the iconic daytime drama ended its run five years ago, Zenk has played a number of fascinating characters on stage and screen. Her turn as Tallulah Bankhead in "Looped" was absolutely fascinating, and her portrayal of a madame in the Old West in Thurston earned her two Indie Series Award nominations. She is currently starring as Polly Wyeth in "Other Desert Cities" at Hudson Stage Company in Armonk, New York, and her performance is, once again, mesmerizing audiences.

In "Other Desert Cities," it's Christmas Eve in Palm Springs, and novelist Brooke Wyeth (Brenda Withers) is back home from new York to celebrate the holidays with her well-heeled parents, brother and aunt. The long-awaited reunion is soon set alight by a bombshell: Brooke is about publish a tell-all memoir that exposes the most painful chapter of the Wyeths' buried past, one that has impacted the lives of the entire family.

Brenda Withers, Colleen Zenk and Davy Raphaely.
Photo Credit: Sue Coflin/Max Photos
As Brooke's mother, Polly, Zenk's portrayal is at times both hilarious and heart-breaking, and she brings Jon Robin Baitz's words to life in such a riveting way that you can't take your eyes off the stage.

Rounding out the stellar cast are Malachy Cleary as Lyman Wyeth, Davy Raphaely as Trip Wyeth, and Peggy J. Scott as Silda Grauman. This must-see production of "Other Desert Cities" is directed by Dan Foster, who recently directed Zenk and Raphaely in a Nantucket production of the show.

"Other Desert Cities" runs through October 31. For tickets and more information, visit