Anna Ziegler

The Last Match

THE LAST MATCH at The Roundabout
Joan Marcus
THE LAST MATCH at The Roundabout
Joan Marcus
THE LAST MATCH at The Old Globe
Photo by Jim Cox
THE LAST MATCH at The Old Globe
Photo by Jim Cox
THE LAST MATCH at The Old Globe
Photo by Jim Cox
THE LAST MATCH at City Theatre Company
Photo by Kristi Jan Hoover
THE LAST MATCH at City Theatre Company
Photo by Kristi Jan Hoover
"The routine back-and-forth of a hard-fought match…approaches the ineffable radiance of one of those moments that tennis fans live for. Time seems to stop in such moments, even as it extends into eternity.”

— the new york times (ben brantley)

plot synopsis

Played out under the bright lights of the U.S. Open Semifinals, The Last Match pits rising Russian star Sergei Sergeyev against American great Tim Porter in an epic showdown that follows two tennis titans through pivotal moments in their lives both on-and-off the court. This gripping, fast-paced story captures the intense world of competitive sports, and human rivalry, and what it means to want something — and the lengths we will go to in order to feel relevant, important, and young.

select productions

— City Theatre, Pittsburgh, 2016 (Directed by Tracy Brigden)
— The Old Globe Theatre, San Diego, 2016 (Directed by GT Upchurch)
— Running now at The Roundabout Theatre Company, Fall 2017 (Directed by GT Upchurch)

more press

“A tennis match with no net, no balls, and no rackets proves gripping in Anna Ziegler’s new play.”  (Critic’s Pick) — Variety

“Ms. Ziegler, a fertile writer of admirably varied style and subject…is also fast becoming a master of swelling choral dialogue, in which urgent but lyrical phrases are intoned in a counterpoint that seems to echo down the halls of history.” — The New York Times (Ben Brantley)

“A play with plenty of underspin, Anna Ziegler’s gripping and contemplative drama unfolds during a close-fought US Open semifinals match….Under Gaye Taylor Upchurch’s direction, the match is a nail-biter, even as Ziegler pauses to eavesdrop on the men’s thoughts, memories and interactions with the women in the stands.” — The New Yorker

“A deft, luminous play. The Last Match swells with intensity and poetic undertones as it courses through 90 minutes…asking big questions about the human condition.” — Stage and Cinema

“This inexplicable tenderness reaffirms Ziegler’s status as one of the most vibrant playwrights in America. Her latest ‘The Last Match’ is no exception.”  — Talkin’ Broadway

“Anna Ziegler is one of the theater’s most productive and original young playwrights….Her The Last Match is a vivid and interestingly structured take on the tennis metaphor. Its terrific recreation of the sound and look of a real tennis match and smoothly interspersed monologues and duologues make us privy to an exciting contest between two talented and dedicated pros as well as to their off-the-courts lives.” — Curtain Up

“I know next to nothing about tennis…. And yet, there I found myself in the final, goose-bump inducing moments of Roundabout Theatre Company’s “The Last Match” completely transfixed and exhilarated, reminded of what I love about the visceral immediacy of live theatre as the lights faded on the final, furious bout of a tennis match…. Ms. Ziegler smartly explores the human reality of how coiled in any great performative moment is everything that has led up to it, the totality of one’s existence…The match is these men’s lives.  It’s not just a game…Ms. Ziegler captures this spirit while also honing in on the nature of ambivalence, how when something overcomes your life because you love it so much, it also becomes much easier to hate…That’s a bold insight from the playwright, deeply relatable, and difficult to observe for fear of where introspection might lead…. the simplicity of this play, and the pace with which it moves, masks a much more profound discourse about ambition, pressure, success, failure, and purpose—subjects we can all relate to.” — Stage Left

“[The Last Match] is a win-win…Clever and effective…with all the insight of the best Sports Illustrated articles.” — Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

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