Around the Island

Collaboration between playwright and actor showcased

COURTESY PHOTO |Eli Wallach and Jeff Baron
COURTESY PHOTO |Eli Wallach and Jeff Baron

If you’re a frequent visitor to the Shelter Island Library, you may notice Jeff Baron typing on his computer. His inside-Hollywood young adult comic novels, “I Represent Sean Rosen” and “Sean Rosen Is Not for Sale,” may soon be joined by another in the series. Recently, he was a featured speaker at the National English Teachers convention in Washington, DC, discussing the Sean Rosen-inspired program he does as the artist-in-residence at Ardsley Middle School.

In addition to his YA novels, he’s also an award-winning playwright, screenwriter and novelist. His first play, “Visiting Mr. Green,” featured veteran actor Eli Wallach’s last starring role. Mr. Wallach, a longtime East End resident and a Tony, Emmy and Oscar-winning actor — “The Good, the Bad & the Ugly” and “The Magnificent Seven” among others — died last June.

“Visiting Mr. Green,” a comedy-drama about family conflict, was the longest-running play of the 1997-1998 New York theatre season and has gone on to be one of the world’s most performed plays, with professional productions in 45 countries, in 23 languages.

“Mischpoke,” the follow-up to “Visiting Mr. Green,” is currently playing its world premiere engagement in Munich; Mr. Wallach did the first reading. “Visiting Mr. Green” is now playing in France, Germany, Romania, the Czech Republic and Croatia, and will soon re-open in Brazil and the Netherlands.

On Saturday, January 10 at 1 p.m. at the East Hampton Library, Mr. Baron will tell the behind-the-scenes story of working with Mr. Wallach and the various producers, directors and co-stars involved prior to the play’s New York opening. He will also show a never-before-seen, high-quality video of Mr. Wallach portraying Mr. Green, opposite Noah Wyle of E.R. fame.

Of their relationship, Mr. Baron said, “Lucky me, to learn from Eli that you can be a great artist and still be a great person. It was an honor -— and a lot of fun — to be his friend.”

Admission is free; call 324-0222, extension 3, to reserve. The library is located at 159 Main Street.