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Reading Series 2008-2009
Banished Children of Eve
by Kelly Younger
directed by Ciaran O'Reilly
Set in New York City during the Civil War years, Banished Children of Eve echoes with Stephen Foster songs and the disparate voices of immigrants, minstrel actors, hucksters, and domestic servants whose lives all intersect. As tensions surrounding emigration, war, and racial strife reach a flashpoint and rush toward the fatal Draft Riots, the characters are drawn together in a net of violence and fear, longing and hope. Commissioned by The Irish Repertory Theatre, Banished Children of Eve is adapted from the novel by Peter Quinn.
Kelly Younger (playwright) is an award-winning playwright with work staged in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, throughout the Midwest and South, as well as in Canada, England, and Ireland. He is a member of the Ensemble Studio Theatre/LA Playwrights Unit, the Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights, and The Dramatists Guild of America. Currently, Younger is developing a full-length, time-bending, romantic-comedy called Rorschach that recently had a premiere reading in New York. Select works include: I Think You Think I Love You (Playscripts; Smith and Kraus anthology "Best Plays of 2005"); Forgive me, Father (JAC publishing); Lady Gregory’s Ingredients (JAC publishing), winner of the Ireland National Lady Gregory Playwriting Award; Off Compass, winner of the 2007 John Gassner New Play Award; Once a Marine; Epiphany Cake; and Why Wyoming, Critics’ Choice for its night in the Samuel French off-off-Broadway Festival. Several monologues from Younger’s plays appear in various anthologies from Smith and Kraus as well as Playscripts, and an excerpt of Younger’s translation of Trojan Women appears in Beth Henley’s play Revelers (Dramatists Play Service). Born and raised in Los Angeles, Younger earned an MA in Classics at Loyola University Chicago and PhD in Drama Studies from University College Dublin in Ireland. He is currently an Associate Professor of English at Loyola Marymount University where he leads workshops in Playwriting and teaches courses in Dramatic Literature. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children. www.KellyYounger.com
with Fred Applegate* (Happiness, Young Frankenstein), David Wilson Barnes* (Becky Shaw, The Lieutenant of Inishmore), Muiris Crowley (The Yeats Project), Mark Hartman* (Avenue Q, Finian's Rainbow), Michelle Hurst* ("SherryBaby," The Story), Nicola Murphy (The Yeats Project), Aaron Shaw ("In Treatment") and Tracie Thoms* (10 Things To Do Before I Die, Rent). *courtesy of AEA
Think Global, F**k Local
by Stella Feehily
directed by Max Stafford-Clark
Humanitarians. By day saving the world. At night they drink, party - move on. And then, some time, they have to go home. In Stella Feehily's Think Global, F**k Local a look behind the public face of UN and NGO workers.
Think Global, F**k Local will be read by Denis Butkus* (Othello, The Coast of Utopia), Chris Chalk *(Ruined, The Overwhelming), Maria Dizzia* (The Drunken City, Eurydice), Lisa Joyce*(That Pretty, Pretty; Or, the Rape Play, Red Light Winter), Heather Raffo* (9 Parts of Desire, Palace of the End), Matthew Rauch* (Prelude to a Kiss, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie) and Mickey Sumner* (Rumspringa, “Last Chance Harvey”). *courtesy of AEA.
Stella Feehily (playwright): Stella is an actress and writer. Her performing work includes A Christmas Carol (the Gate Theatre), Macbeth (the Tivoli Theatre), Ten (the Project Arts Centre), Letters to Felice (the Pavilion Theatre) and Iphigenia At Aulis (the Abbey Theatre). TV and film includes "The Ritual," "Ballykissangel" and "Fair City." Her short play Game was commissioned by Fishamble Theatre Company and premiered at the Project Arts Centre, Dublin 2003. Duck, Stella's first full length play premiered in an Out of Joint and Royal Court co-production at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds, July 2003, before playing at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, The Dublin Theatre Festival and the Royal Court Theatre, London. Stella's second full-length play O Go My Man was co-produced by Out of Joint and the Royal Court Theatre in January 2006 and was joint winner of the Susan Smith Blackburn Award, 2007 (prize awarded to four writers). Catch (written with four other female playwrights) opened at the Royal Court in December 2006. Radio plays include: Sweetbitter -Lyric FM and Julia Robert's Teeth -Radio 3. Stella is currently under commission to the Royal Court Theatre, The National Theatre, Soho Theatre and the Manhattan Theatre Club. Dreams of Violence, her new play, opens at Soho Theatre in July 09 and co-commissioners Manhattan Theatre Club are producing a public reading on the 30th March 09.
Max Stafford-Clark (director): Max Stafford–Clark lives and works in London where he runs his own theatre company Out Of Joint. He began his career at The Traverse Theatre Edinburgh where he was the artistic director from 1968-1972. He founded Joint Stock in 1982, which was to become one of the most innovative and exciting British theatre companies of the 80’s. From 1979 to 1993 he ran London’s Royal Court Theatre and during this time he initiated an exchange programme with Joseph Papp’s Public Theatre, which brought a number of his productions to New York including Top Girls, Tom and Viv, Rat In The Scull, Aunt Dan and Lemon, and Serious Money. Since then other productions of his work have been seen in the U.S., including: The Overwhelming at The Roundabout, Three Birds Alighting On a Field at Manhattan Theatre Club, Blue Heart and The Stewart Of Christendom both at BAM, Our Lady Of Sligo at The Irish Rep, Shopping And Fucking at New York Theatre Workshop and Macbeth, Guthrie Minneapolis and MIFA. His production of The Convicts Opera – a co-production with Sydney Theatre Company - is currently playing at The Rose Theatre, Kingston.
The reading of Think Global, F**k Local is being presented with the cooperation of Out of Joint and was presented last summer as part of the Royal Court's Rough Cut staged reading series.
by Jim O'Connor
Rosemary is the story of a girl who only wants to fit in, and to please her father. The girl is Rosemary Kennedy. Her father, Joseph P. Kennedy, faces tough decisions as his daughter's fragile and unpredictable temperament continually disrupts his vision for the future. Innocence and ambition clash in this elemental family struggle. Rosemary's mother, Rose, and her siblings, Joe, Jr., Jack, and Kathleen, are all drawn into the family's unease. When war comes, the young Kennedys enter service. But Rosemary disappears from the family, forever. Rosemary Kennedy was given a lobotomy in 1941, and she remained in seclusion until her death in 2005. Rosemary dramatizes the world of her imagination and memory, and her place in the family before and after her brother Jack's presidency. We see her in her youth, in her solitude, and in a final tragic pact her father never bargained for.
Rosemary will be read by John Behlmann* (Journey's End, Ghosts), Kristin Griffith* (The Master Builder, Stretch (a fantasia)), Lisa Joyce* (That Pretty Pretty or The Rape Play, Red Light Winter), Greg Keller (That Pretty Pretty or The Rape Play, The Seagull), Brian Kerwin* (August Osage County, "Big Love"), and Laura Odeh* (Aristocrats, A Body of Water). *courtesy of AEA.
An earlier draft of Rosemary won the 2002 Joseph Jefferson Citation for "Outstanding New Work" for the PROP Theatre production at Victory Gardens Theatre, Chicago.
Jim O'Connor (playwright) has seen his full-length work produced in small professional theatres in New York, Chicago, LA, and Philadelphia, and in NYC workshops and readings at the Chelsea, the Lion, Abingdon, Actors Studio, Working Man's Clothes, Capital Rep, and others. His One-Acts, The New Communications Policy, and The New Arts Policy, won awards at American Globe, NYC, and at Stageworks in Hudson, NY. Productions: Glomar, Dig Here for Money (Actors Playhouse, and Al's Theatre, LA), Deep to Center (Actor's Outlet, NYC), Rosemary (Victory Gardens, Chicago, and Interact, Philadelphia). Rosemary won Chicago's 2002 Joseph Jefferson Citation for "Outstanding New Work." Jim is a graduate of St. Ignatius High School and John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio. He also received degrees from Kent State and Hunter College, and is a member of the Dramatists Guild.
by Morna Regan
In Midden, after 15 years in the US, Ruth has finally built up a business successful enough to bring her back home to Ireland. But instead of the welcome she longs for, her arrival provokes instant strife, opening old scars and threatening to drown them all in a sea of resentment and anger. The homesick returning Yank no longer knows where home is. Midden is the story of five women from three generations. Told with humour and warmth it unpicks the tangled threads between past and present, mothers and daughters, exile and home.
With Rachel Botchan* (Twelfth Night, The Importance of Being Earnest), Elizabeth Canavan* (Little Flower of East Orange, Our Lady of 121st Street,) Terry Donnelly* (Sive, Bailegangaire), Nicole Lowrance* (Dividing the Estate, The Merchant of Venice), and Mary Beth Peil* (Sunday in the Park with George, Celebration/The Room). *Courtesy of AEA.
Morna Regan (playwright) is a Fulbright Scholar and an MFA graduate from USC, LA. She has worked as an actress for many years performing with such companies as the Abbey, Ireland's National Theatre, Rough Magic and the Gate, Dublin, London's West End, the Kennedy Centre, Washington D.C. and the Long Wharf, Connecticut. Morna's first piece of writing - The Case of Majella McGinty – a 30 minute film - was directed by Academy-Award-nominated Kirsten Sheridan and won twelve international awards including, in the US, a Silver Spire at the San Francisco Film Festival and the Gold Award at the Worldfest in Houston. It also won the Jury Prize at the Cologne Short Film Festival and Morna won Best Actress at the New York International Independent Film & Video Festival. Midden was produced by Rough Magic Theatre Company and directed by Lynne Parker and the play was awarded an Edinburgh Fringe First, The Stewart Parker Radio Drama Award, The Jayne Snow Award at the Dublin Theatre Festival, the Heidleburg European Author's Award and was nominated for an Irish Times/ESB Best New Play Award. The show went on to play many venues around Ireland, Traverse One in Edinburgh and the Hampstead Theatre, London. It has also been translated into several different languages and played in numerous venues across Europe to huge critical acclaim. Morna is co-founder of a London based screenwriters' group called CUT2 and is currently finishing her first full length screenplay and has been awarded Writers Only Initiative funding from the Irish Film Board. Recently Morna was very proud to partake in Origin Theatre Company's hugely successful 1rst Irish 2008 End of Lines Festival at the 59E59 Theatre with a one-act called The Housekeeper.
In Without You, all Simon ever really wanted was to have someone to love…but you should really be careful what you wish for. Without You is a darkly comic exploration into what happens when people from very different worlds collide. It looks at the wonder and chaos of love and asks what price we are willing to pay for the comfort of not being left alone.
Ursula Rani Sarma (playwright) is an award winning Writer and Director of Irish/Indian descent. She grew up in Co Clare has been writing predominantly for theatre since graduating from University College Cork in 1999. Ursula co-founded Djinn Productions later that year and has directed several award winning productions as Artistic Director of the company, the most recent being her production of The Magic Tree in June-September 2008 (Cork/Edinburgh/Limerick/Dublin). Ursula has been Writer in Residence for The National Theatre London, Paines Plough Theatre Company London, Galway Local Authorities and the Cross Border Centre project which united artists from the North and South of Ireland. In that time, Ursula has written many plays for stage including Blue, …touched…, Gift, Orpheus Road, The Spider Men, When the War Came, The Exchange, The Dark Things, The Magic Tree and for radio; Car Four (BBC), A Tiny Light in the Darkness (BBC) and The Fishermen (RTE). In September 2008, Ursula’s work received it’s US premiere when Origin Theatre Company staged her short play The Parting Glass at New York’s E59E theatre as part of their End of Lines Project. Her plays been published, translated and produced at home and abroad. Ursula also translated Italian Playwright Luca De Bei’s play The Dogs that Face the Hare for the National Theatre Studio in 2003 and selection of her poetry was published in 2005 by Arlen Press in Divas: A Sense of Place anthology of Irish writing.
Ursula has received many awards for her plays including an Irish Times/ESB Theatre Award, an Edinburgh Fringe Award and the Heidelberg Audience Award for Best Play. She was selected to take part in the 2006 and 2008 New Playwriting Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center where her plays, The Exchange and Without You were developed. Ursula is currently developing stage work for companies such as The National Theatre London, The Stephen Joseph Theatre Scarborough, The Traverse Theatre Edinburgh and A.C.T San Fransisco. In 2006 Ursula wrote and directed her first short film entitled The Present and she is currently developing several original feature length screenplays for Irish and international companies.
With Xanthe Elbrick* (Beebo Brinker Chronicles, Coram Boy), Maggie Lacey* (Dividing the Estate, Inherit the Wind), Kevin O'Donnell* (Geometry of Fire, The Hairy Ape) and Michael Stuhlbarg* (The Voysey Inheritance, The Pillowman). *courtesy of AEA
Rank is a terse, darkly comic thriller exploring the boundaries of loyalty, trust and friendship in a cynical world of avarice and betrayal. The action of the play unfolds when one desperate taxi-man takes on a job he should have the sense the refuse. Rank examines the lure of addiction in all its forms as two gamblers struggle to resist one last throw of the dice.
Robert Massey (playwright) was born and raised in Dublin. He graduated Commerce in UCD and completed his postgraduate in Marketing at the Smurfit School of Business, Blackrock. His first play Deadline was developed as part of the Playtalk programme at the Abbey Theatre and produced by Lane Productions at Andrews Lane Studio in February 2006, transferring to Andrews Lane Theatre in April of that year. His second play Over and Out was again produced by Lane Productions, opening at the Civic Theatre Tallaght in May 2008 before embarking on a nation-wide tour of nine venues including Draoicht in Blanchardstown and the Cork Opera House. He lives in Clane, Co Kildare with his wife Kathleen and their daughters Ella and Robyn. The Fishamble Theatre Company produced Rank at the Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre Festival in October and the production will travel to the Civic Theatre in Tallaght later this month before premiering in London at the Tricycle Theatre this November.
With Gregory Derelian* (Antony and Cleopatra, The Hairy Ape), Greg Keller* (Steve & Idi, Uncle Vanya), David Lansbury* (Defender of the Faith, "Michael Clayton"), Michael McCarty* (To Be or Not To Be, Mary Poppins), and Daniel Stewart Sherman* (Cyrano de Bergerac, A Touch of the Poet). *courtesy of AEA
Kingdom of the Shore
by Terence Lamude
The four Moloney sisters have a problem. What to do with the house in Southampton, Long Island that has been the family’s summer retreat for over fifty years? A symbol of their ascendancy to the American upper middle class from Irish immigrant roots, it has become a battlefield for clashing memories and poignant disillusionment. In this new comedy-drama, an eventful June weekend leads the sisters draw back the lace curtain on the disenchantment of Irish-Americans at the end of the rainbow ... once that pot of gold has tarnished.
Kingdom of the Shore will be read by Fred Applegate* (Young Frankenstein, The Producers), Delphi Harrington* (Les Liaisons Dangereuses, The Hairy Ape), Jayne Houdyshell* (Wicked, The New Century), Lisa Kron* (Spain, Well), David Margulies* (The Accomplices, Wonderful Town) and Judith Roberts* (Close Ties, The Voysey Inheritance). *courtesy of AEA.
Terence Lamude (playwright) In his native New York City, Mr. Lamude directed Remembrance (Outer Critics Circle nomination) with Milo O’Shea and Frances Sternhagen at the John Houseman Theatre and previously at the Irish Arts Center for a combined run of fourteen months. Also at the IAC, he directed the premiere of Away Alone and the American premieres of Poor Beast in the Rain, Famine, and I Do Not Like Thee Doctor Fell. Also in NYC: Music From Down the Hill at the WPA Theatre, Arms and the Man at the Pearl Theatre and Much Ado About Nothing at the Riverside Shakespeare Theatre. He directed The Tempest at the Traverse Theatre for the Edinburgh Festival, subsequently transferring to the Cockpit Theatre in London. For Vienna’s English Theatre, he directed Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me and the European premiere of the Pulitzer Prize winner, Proof and for the English Theatre of Berlin and the English Theatre of Frankfurt, the Continental European premiere of Lobby Hero. He has directed five American premieres and nine premieres, including Sockdology by Jeffrey Hatcher at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival and Tom Dudzick’s phenomenally successful Over the Tavern Trilogy at Buffalo’s Studio Arena and numerous subsequent productions across the country all the way to Los Angeles. He has directed extensively at other regional theatres including the Alliance Theatre, American Stage Company, Asolo Theatre, Capital Repertory Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse, Delaware Theatre Company, Florida Studio Theatre, George Street Playhouse, GeVa Theatre, Merrimack Repertory, Milwaukee Repertory, Nebraska Repertory, NY State Theatre Institute, Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis and Sacramento Theatre Company. He has been a guest director/visiting professor at Ohio State University, Rice University, Queens College and the North Carolina School of the Arts. Thanks to his two Irish grandmothers (Counties Clare and Kildare), Mr. Lamude is a proud citizen of the Republic of Ireland. Kingdom of the Shore marks his playwriting debut.
The 2008-09 New Works Reading Series is underwritten in part by Patricia Smith and the members of our Patron's Circle.