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2002 SEASON

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THE 2002 LINEUP

2002 Season Plays

All the World's a Stage

By Donna Stearns

All The World's A Stage is an updated gay-friendly musical farce based on As You Like It. Except ... well ... this ain't Shakespeare anymore! It's a soap opera! Lust triangles! Lesbian Celia is hot for Rosalind who is pursuing a porn-fixated boy who is dating another boy, who, by the way, is actually Rosalind in disguise. Then there are two sets of brothers who can' t get along until porn-boy saves Oliver from a hungry lion and Frederick becomes a repentant minister. As each character makes a new home in the forest, they also find a way to be themselves, cross-dressers and all. Donna Stearns is a long-standing member of Women In Music (WIM), a dynamic group of music industry professionals working together to support, cultivate and recognize the talent of women in the field,  and has served as National Liaison, Vice President-Workshop Series, moderator of two publishing panels, and staff writer for WIM's newsletter. As a singer-songwriter, her WIM credits include CB's Gallery, Barnes and Noble, and Red Lion.

apple

By Canadian playwright Vern Thiessen (American Premiere)

A courageous piece of playwriting about betrayal, guilt, death, and love. Beautiful, spare, poetic, even erotic. Andy's marriage is broken, and when he gets downsized from his middle-management job, he starts to spend his days in the park. On one of these sojourns, he meets a mysterious young woman. What happens next shatters Andy's image of who he is and what he thinks he wants. Elegant yet emotionally complex, apple is a Garden of Eden parable exploring the nature of sex, secrets and second chances. apple won the Alberta Playwrights' Award for Best New Play in 2001. Starring: Margaret Reed, a DramaLogue Award winner is best known as Shannon O'Hara McKechnie on As The World Turns; Phoebe Jonas, from VH1's Sledgehammer and Rock of Ages; and Doug Barron (Law & Order, The Sopranos, Sex and the City, Mr. Destiny, Just Visiting), directed by Randy White (Underneath the Lintel).

Belles of the Mill, A Musical Drama

Book by Rachel Rubin Ladutke
Based on the stage play The Belles of the Mill by Rachel Rubin Ladutke
Music and lyrics by Jill Marshall-Work
Directed by Arlene Schulman
World premiere

Lawrence, Massachusetts. 1912. In the throes of a bitter New England winter, thousands of immigrant textile workers begin a bold strike, and the lives of two very different women are forever changed ... Bridget Gallagher, a young Irish-Catholic mill worker, is reluctantly drawn into the strike and finds her destiny through struggle; and Sarah Weissmann, a Jewish midwife, jeopardizes her livelihood and her family when she tries to help the strikers. Weaving a simple tale of courage and transformation with an evocative, dramatic, and delightfully playful score, Belles of the Mill will touch the soul of everyone who has ever had to fight to protect their families, their dignity, and their self-respect in the face of injustice and prejudice.

Beyond the Veil

By John Chatterton
Directed by Linda Burson

Beyond the Veil tells the story of a Victorian scientist who believes he is in touch with the spirit world through a comely young medium. As his contacts get increasingly intimate, he becomes ever more convinced that he is penetrating virgin territory. Even he has to wonder, though, when the medium gets pregnant.

Boulevard X

By Susan N. Horowitz
Directed by Rajedra Ramoon Maharaj
Music Director: Brian Allan Hobbs
Percussion Director: Kwaku Kwaakye Obeng

A spicy Afro-Carib-Latin-from-Manhattan musical that mixes street smarts, spiritualism, Shakespeare, and sex!

This is the story 'bout Mac and Beth
Lotsa romance, violent death
Sensual ladies, wicked kings
Guns 'n' knives, nasty things…
We can cast a spell or a hex
Boulevard X!

Buon Natale, Bruno

Written and performed by Terianne Falcone

REALITY THEATER: Buon Natale, Bruno is a solo show written by Terianne Falcone and directed by Gary Austin. The piece is composed of characters taken from local news headlines, making each as realistic as our neighbors we encounter daily. The play centers on Bruna, a brutally honest older Italian woman who lacks an iota of self-consciousness. Through Bruna's observations we meet her tenants, whose lives are as roller-coaster-like as her own. There is no voting off the stage, devouring of grotesque substances, or catty arguments -- just a peek behind the closed doors of everyday people ... as real as it gets.

Cirrius, Nebraska

By Nick Vigorito

Two worlds collide when a stranger from New York City visits Cirrius, Nebraska, the smallest town in America. The weary businessman who is used to all that New York can offer is now confronted with a place so small that there is only one cab, one room at the inn, and a mayor who is also the postmaster and town judge. Still, a guy could get used to the slower pace, small-town friendliness, and daily fresh baked goods for breakfast, if only he could figure out what is the town secret that everyone is hiding from him. Come find out for yourself in Cirrius, Nebraska, a tender comedy about understanding, loss, love, and cinnamon nut rolls.

City of Dreams

Music by Joseph Zellnik
Book and Lyrics by David Zellnik
Directed by Michael Alltop
Presented by Youngblood & The Ensemble Studio Theatre

Fin-de-siècle Vienna ... a glittering city of waltzes on the edge of an abyss, where a new century will be born one bright January morning in an act of savage violence.

Young Sigmund Freud watches as the Royal Hapsburgs are swept down an Oedipal whirlpool of love and rage. He and friend Gustav Klimt -- the artist whose shimmering gold canvases will soon seduce the world -- stare in disbelief as the fate of the Empire rests on an indecisive, melancholic Prince, a half-mad anorexic Empress, an iron-fisted reactionary Emperor -- and a 16-year-old social climber whose affair with the Crown Prince threatens to topple the entire Empire.

Dirty Laundry

By Deborah Louise Ortiz

Dirty Laundry follows the path of two women, Diane and Liz, sharing their experience of a life-changing encounter. The encounter forces each to reflect upon their personal lives and question the road ahead. Through introspection and conversation the two delve heavily into the topics of friendship, love, and most important, relationships and their effect on us as individuals. The bond these two women form teaches Liz the various dimensions of love and guides Diane to truly care about herself.

The Durang Project: Five Short Plays

By Christopher Durang

Featuring the plays: The Doctor Will See You Now, DMV Tyrant, Funeral Parlor, Kitty the Waitress, and Business Lunch in the Russian Tea Room.
Directed by Michael Klimzak

A writer struggles with creating true art in a commercial world....

A woman mourns the sudden death of her husband....

A man tries to get his driver's license....

These scenarios may not sound very humorous, but they are hilarious situations in the hands of Christopher Durang! The Durang Project is a collection of five short Christopher Durang pieces, each stocked full of the comic genius and absurdity that IS Christopher Durang.

Faustus

By Christopher Marlowe
Adaptation and Direction by Jay Michaels
Presented by Genesis Repertory

"The legend of the man who sells his soul to the devil in exchange for knowledge & power and who must finally pay for his brief triumph with the agonies of personal damnation was uncomfortably close to the shape of Orson Welles' own personal myth." John Houseman

Genesis Repertory transports Dr. Faustus -- Marlowe's dark tale of a man who sells his soul for knowledge and power -- to depression-era New York and turns him into a brilliant film director whose dreams of grandeur shall not be denied! This version examines the many interpretations of Hell and our obsession with the wages of sin. The opulent production scheme features macabre masques and music and juxtaposes the New York City of the time of The Federal Theatre with pagan icons, ancient mythology, and Judeo-Christian lore.

Flack

By Tina Posterli

Flack, a dark comedy, is an inside look into the world of pharmaceutical public relations. When leading asthma drug Nasoflo makes headline news for killing and incapacitating 50 people in a clinical trial, five young public-relations executives are put in charge of the fate of the product. Over the course of one afternoon, the team must spin a media strategy that will counteract the potentially fatal news and save their agency's largest account as well as their jobs.

Heavy Mettle

By Richard Hoehler

Heavy Mettle (Tough Tales of New York's Gentle Men), celebrates the lives of some of New York's anonymous denizens -- the guy handing out flyers on the street, the homeless man sleeping in a storefront, the lonely retiree out on a park bench looking for companionship. A human comedy steeled with tragedy, it is a play about hope and survival that takes a good hard look at the overlooked faces in the crowd. At times funny, touching, and biting, the characters in Heavy Mettle prove with unexpected wit and insight the simple truth that everyone, no matter what their station, counts.

Heroes

By Jonathan Brady
Directed by Mark Steven Robinson

Heroes is a comedy that poses the following questions: What if your life became a monotonous bore? What if your dreams of originality were fading fast? And what if you then discovered a way to do something that no one had done before, to turn your life into something so different, so extraordinary, that it would shock the world? It might be dangerous, or embarrassing, and failure would certainly be a possibility. But you can't argue with the idea itself. Not a cult. Not some weird pyramid scheme. Not a religion. Not a direct marketing thing. Not real estate. Not anything that you think it might be. A truly original idea. What would you do? Heroes. The questions are answered.

I Love Myself and Who are the People in Your Neighborhood?

Two one-man shows by John Tedeschi

Hell's Kitchen is made up of a diverse buffet. When walking in its confines one might experience - labels. These labels fall over the poor, the rich, the strong, the weak, the ethnic, the homosexual, the businessman, the civil worker, the successful, and the barely making it. Who are the People in Your Neighborhood? explores ten people, as portrayed by one actor, who make up a community, side by side, without knowing anyone around them. These characters define loneliness, alienation, ambition, tenacity, despair, and strength by the stereotypes they choose to walk in or the individuals they would rather be.

I Love Myself probes the crucial balance of taking one's false mask off to allow one's true self to emerge; as one removes the mask the true self is available to give and experience love. I Love Myself takes Narcissus by the hand, educates him, and allows him to discover unconditional and unobjectified love. Through songs by Queen, Journey, Blitzstein, Lloyd Webber, The Rolling Stones, Aretha Franklin, vintage ditties, and patter of life's adventures, the audience and the performer learn the invaluable platitude, "You can't love another without loving yourself."

I Love New York -- What's Your Excuse?

By David Kosh
Directed by Ann Bowen

I Love New York -- What's Your Excuse? is a full evening of gently satirical sketches and plays about some of the folks in our little town, NYC -- the people on the bus, at the office, in restaurants and delis ... the neurotic, the freakish, the lonely, the wonderful ... the people we tell our friends and family about. "Guess what I heard today?" we say. "You won't believe what I saw." I Love New York -- What's Your Excuse? celebrates this unique breed of the human animal -- humanus bigapplus, if you will -- running wild and free only on the isle of Manhattan.

Loola

Euphrasy Productions

Enter the world of LooLa, where girl meets boy in a funkified dance-theatre piece. Choreographed and staged by Tesha Buss, LooLa tells the tale of a young woman's exploration of sexuality, urban survival, and pop culture. A collage of contemporary and classic pop music combined with streamlined city sounds creates a backdrop by which we see our heroine pulse her way through survival in the "big city." Extracting movement from the classic elements of ballet, musical theatre, and jazz, this ensemble-driven dance story is turned upside down by pushing the limits of its own athleticism. These central themes are visualized through a swing-driven pas de deux, a hip-hop trio, and a fully realized cityscape montage.

More Bitch Than a Bitch

By John Paul

Following the brutally honest tradition of Neil LaBute and Caryl Churchill, More Bitch Than a Bitch strips sexual politics to the bone. This searing black comedy is the tale of Calvin Carney, male secretary. Be dazzled by the pathetic spectacle of his life. Be mystified by his complete lack of backbone. Be aroused by his dominatrix boss, Marisa. Be terrified by his nightmare memories of jailhouse assaults. Brought to you by the people behind last year's Scrape, voted by Show Business Weekly "most likely to gag Camille Paglia."

Mustard -- It's a Gas!

By Ben Murphy

A musical comedy based on the life of Fritz Haber, who almost single-handedly invented modern chemical warfare. Haber invented many of the earliest chemical weapons, including mustard gas. He was also instrumental in discovering how to use these weapons on the battlefield.

My Life in the Trenches

Written and performed by Jill Dalton
Creative Consultant: Joan Cappello

My Life in the Trenches is the story of a southern Army brat who tries to make peace with the paradox of her life: her mother was a Quaker, her father was a soldier, making her passive/aggressive. To which her therapist replies, "Hmmm. That'll be $95."

It's a 40-year siege from performing in her bedroom through her involvement in the antiwar movement of the early '70s in the south to supporting herself as an actress in New York City. But first she must battle her addictions to over-achieving, exercise, her father, her husband, and the spotlight. A real war story of a woman's courage to empower herself to trust her heart, follow her dreams, and live an authentic life. It's about Jill's survival and strength, transformation and growth, while always using humor to survive. One doesn't have to be a star to matter. There is grace and honor in a job well done.

Rubber

By Tom Sleigh
Directed by Dyana Kimball
Hudson Exploited Theater Company

Rubber is a swift-moving psychological thriller set in a post-colonial central-African country. It traces the relationship between the charismatic General Thorson, chief of security, and his white secretary, Maze, who is tormented by the legacy of his dead father, a brutal colonial enforcer. Caught between his loyalty to his country and his friendship with Maze, General Thorson joins a plot to enlist the spirit of Maze's father to fight against "the rebels" -- a plot that threatens to destroy them both. By showing how the world of the dead and the living are completely intertwined in the day-to-day life of contemporary central Africa, Rubber is both an accurate depiction of race and political power, as well as a metaphor for the complicating factors that engender cultural secrecy, shame, and even genocide.

Saints and Singing

By Gertrude Stein
deep ellum ensemble

Internationally acclaimed performance group deep ellum ensemble presents Gertrude Stein's 1928 play Saints and Singing, a freewheeling meditation on ritual, angels, and the saints.  At once quirky and hypnotic, deep ellum ensemble has been noted for their "fine a cappella singing and strong acting" (Village Voice), "vibrant blend of theatrical elements" (Berliner Morgenpost) and "astounding grace and power" (Dallas Morning News).  Under the direction of Matthew Earnest, the ensemble creates a charmingly erudite event using Stein's fascinated repetition, various religious iconography, dance, and an eclectic set of a cappella holy music by Gregorian monks, Handel, Prince, and others.

Star Crossed Lovers

By Charles Battersby
Splinter Theatre Co.

Star Crossed Lovers is the latest sketch comedy epic by The Splinter Group. Written by Charles Battersby, and directed by Valentina Cardninalli, Star Crossed Lovers illustrates the bitter rivalry between Star Wars fans and Star TREK fans ... and tells the tale of forbidden love at a sci-fi convention.

Time Machine 2.0

Book, Music & Lyrics by Mark Weiser
Directed by Daniella Topol

Time Machine 2.0 is the musical adventure of Simon, a young man in modern-day New York, who believes himself to be the long-lost descendant of the famed science-fiction author, H.G. Wells. Through an accidental event, Simon gets his hands on the actual time machine and decides to find out for himself. But, as any good science-fiction fan knows, time travel is never easy. Winding up back in 1892, Simon and George (H.G.) find themselves in the midst of a mystery of a different kind -- a new string of murders similar in pattern to those of the infamous Jack the Ripper. Can these two men catch the killer, rescue the women they love, and save both of their worlds from disaster? Only time will tell....

Will And The Ghost

By Aoise Stratford and Conal Condren
Directed by Christian Ely
Tobacco Bar Theatre Company Inc.
New York Premiere

This award-winning one-act play starts when a mysterious stranger rescues Will Shakespeare from a mugging. The stranger claims to be an out-of-work actor specializing in spirits. He wants Will to write parts for him. The problem is, Will doesn't believe in ghosts ... but maybe he should! This witty new play was the winner of the 2001 New Britain Repertory Theatre One Act Play Competition and a finalist for the 2001 Southwest Theatre Association new play award.

Woman vs. Superman

By Kelly Jean Fitzsimmons
Ciara Productions

it's a bird
it's a plane
it's ... not what you think

Woman vs. Superman is a dark comedy about desire and secret identity. Laura Kemp, after years of living with her husband's obsession with Superman, snaps, and plots to drive him insane by making him believe he is developing Superman's powers. But in a world where people aren't always what they appear, what is real? And what happens to Laura's husband?

"It's not murder if he jumps of his own free will, but it's not suicide either, if he believes he is going to fly."

In the end, is belief stronger than reality? Or are they one in the same?