The Gin Game

  • Written by D.L. Coburn
  • Directed by Jenny Sullivan
  • OBS Designer, Operator and Editor Jessie Vacchiano
  • The Gin Game is presented in arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French, Inc.


Laguna Playhouse is pleased to present a staged reading of this Pulitzer Prize winning drama.

Longtime nursing home resident Weller Martin (Joe Spano) has avoided the other patients, until newcomer Fonsia Dorsey (JoBeth Williams) engages him in a quiet game of gin rummy. The two strike up a friendship as they share stories about the lives they led in the outside world. But when Fonsia wins every hand, Weller becomes increasingly frustrated, until their gin games and conversations become a battleground, and as each game progresses, a most unexpected climax puts both at odds with each other, their pasts and themselves. 

*This performance is eligible for purchase with on-account funds*

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Joe Spano
Weller Martin
Biography »
Joe Spano

JOE SPANO is an Emmy Award-winning actor currently featured as Tobias Fornell on the series “NCIS.” Joe starred for 7 years as Lt. Henry Goldblume on “Hill Street Blues.” He also starred in the series “Mercy Point,” “Amazing Grace,” “Murder One” and “NYPD Blue.” Joe has starred in 20 films made for television and guest-starred on 38 television shows. He has appeared in 30 feature films, including “Hart’s War,” “Primal Fear,” “Apollo 13,” “American Graffiti,” “Hollywoodland,” “Fracture” and “Frost/Nixon.” New York stage credits include the Roundabout Theatre Company production of Arthur Miller’s The Price (Tony nominated for Best Revival). West Coast credits include multiple roles over ten seasons with Berkeley Rep, of which he is a founding member; American Buffalo, (L.A. Drama Critics’ Circle Award); School for Scandal, Speed the Plow and A Chorus of Disapprovalfor South Coast Rep; and Bill Cain’s Equivocation at the Geffen. At Rubicon, where he is a company member, Joe has appeared in Shaw’s The Devil’s Disciple, Sylvia, Waiting for Godot, R. Buckminster Fuller: The History…and MYSTERY of the Universe (Ovation Award), Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Cormac McCarthy’s Sunset Limited and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. He recently stared in Laguna Playhouse’s production of Heisenberg. Pandemic work includes two zoom plays with JoBeth Williams and directed by Jenny Sullivan for the Skylight Theater; A Song, a new play about race, directed by Chris Butler, for the Rubicon and a reading of Insulted, a play by Belarussian playwright, Andrei Kureichik, at the Rogue Machine as part of a world-wide reading to bring attention to the political and social repression in that country.

JoBeth Williams
Fonsia Dorsey
Biography »
JoBeth Williams

JOBETH WILLIAMS returns to the Southern California stage having stared in The Quality of Life (Geffen Playhouse), Other Desert Cities (Mark Taper Forum), The Night is a Child (Pasadena Playhouse) and The Fall to Earth (Odyssey Theatre Ensemble). In New York, she starred in Annie Baker’s Body Awareness(Atlantic Theater Company), Last Dance (Manhattan Theatre Club), Moonchildren, Lady House Blues, A Couple of White Chicks and Gardenia. Her regional credits include Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (McCarter Theatre Company), Idiot’s Delight (The Kennedy Center) and Antony and Cleopatra(The Old Globe). She rose to prominence appearing in such films as “Stir Crazy” (1980), “Poltergeist” (1982), “The Big Chill” (1983), “The Day After” (1983), “Teachers” (1984), and “Poltergeist II: The Other Side” (1986). A three-time Emmy Award nominee, she was nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for her work in the TV movie “Adam” (1983) and the TV miniseries “Baby M” (1988), and her guest role in the sitcom “Frasier”. Her directorial debut with the 1994 short film “On Hope” earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Live Action Short Film. In 2009 she began serving as president of the Screen Actors Guild Foundation; she is President Emeritus of the foundation.