{Los Angeles} Anna LaMadrid & Sheila Carrasco to Premiere Upcoming Comedic Solo Plays Presented by IAMA Theatre Company (March 21- April 18, 2021)

Anna LaMadrid and Sheila Carrasco, two fiercely funny Latinx-American women are poised to perform, film and premiere their respective solo comedic plays about female identity in production with IAMA Theatre Company in Los Angeles. Anyone But Me, written and performed by Sheila Carrasco, directed by Margaux Susi, and The Oxy Complex, written and  performed by Anna LaMadrid, directed by Michelle Bossy, will be filmed live at L.A.’s Pico Playhouse and premiere virtually on March 21 at IAMA Theatre Company online, where each will continue their online run through April 18.  

Anyone But Me by Sheila Carrasco 

In Anyone But Me, Sheila Carrasco dissects the psyches of women who struggle with self-identity, exploring the personas we create in order to get by. From the local grocery clerk, to your neighbor’s teenage daughter, to that lady from the cult — this play is about women who want to be someone they are not. Someone better, easier, stronger… anyone but them. 

“There’s a little of me in each of the characters,” Carrasco says. “I think most women, at some point in our lives, tend to wrap our identities around a single aspect — a relationship, our job or work ethic, our racial or maybe immigrant background, our perceptions of ourselves as artists. This play is an exploration of all my different alter egos and the insecurities I’ve had in my life, and about accepting the nuance of everything that makes me who I am. We don’t have to be just one thing.”  

Originally from the South Side of Chicago and an alumna of NYU and Harvard, Carrasco’s most recent credits include IAMA’s Found: A New Musical (“Carrasco stand[s] out especially” — Stage Raw) and the CBS pilot Ghosts, as Flower, a hippy ghost from the ’60s. On TV, she’s been seen in I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson, The Good Place,Jane the Virgin, Outmatched, The Odd Couple, Life in Pieces, AmericanHousewife and #VanLife for NBC/Universal. She was selected to perform as one of the JFL New Faces of Comedy. Other credits include CBS Showcase (as both a performer and head writer), the Groundlings, UCB, American Repertory Theatre, Moscow Art Theatre, Steppenwolf Garage and Chicago’s Court Theatre. Half Chilean/Mapuche, Carrasco is a creator for Más Mejor, Broadway Video’s premium comedy studio for Latinx voices. This is Sheila Carrasco‘s first solo theater show, and her first time doing one sans wigs and costumes… so basically naked.

The Oxy Complex by Anna LaMadrid 

Set during the 500th day of quarantine, Anna LaMadrid’s The Oxy Complex is a dark comedy exploring love, sex, loneliness, trauma, and the hormone that affects it all — Oxytocin, also known as “the cuddle” or “love” hormone.   

“I initially set out to examine the ways that technology interrupts our biology,” explains LaMadrid. “But now that quarantine has taken away all our distractions and we have all this time on our hands, how do we reckon with ourselves? Viviana is a fictional character and her story is heightened, but the show is rooted in truth, drawn from personal experience and from other women I know.”   

A Venezuelan born, East Coast-bred actor living in Los Angeles, LaMadrid starred as sardonic, gum snapping “Jamie” in the critically acclaimed IAMA production of Bess Wohl’s American Hero (“boundlessly funny” — Los Angeles Times). She won a Stage Raw Award for Female Comedy Performance for her take on Betty 3 in Collective Rage: A Play in 5 Boops at Boston Court. Her TV credits include Vida on Starz (recurring); Love, Victor on Hulu; Bless This Mess and Grey’s Anatomy on ABC; and she was selected to participate in the ABC Discovers Showcase. In 2016, she launched Put Me On Self-Tape, a self-tape and audition coaching studio in L.A.  

More About the Productions and IAMA Theatre Company

“Strong female voices have always been at the center of IAMA,” state co-artistic directors Stefanie Black and Katie Lowes. “We knew that supporting Sheila and Anna, two undeniably powerful storytellers who are both ensemble members, was a no-brainer from the jump. Each brings her own unique theatrical expression to our virtual stage, begging the audience to stay present and look within.”   

Anyone But Me and The Oxy Complex are the third and fourth in IAMA Theatre Company’s 2020-21 season of new solo work exploring identity, isolation, race and connection. The season opened with Making Friends written and performed by Tom DeTrinis, also shot live at the Pico Playhouse. Hi, Are You Single?, written and performed by IAMA’s 2020 Rhimes Unsung Voices Playwriting commission recipient Ryan J. Haddad, is currently streaming through Feb. 28, presented by Washington D.C.’s  Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company in association with IAMA. Hi, Are You Single? was shot live at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre. 

The creative team for Anyone But Me and The Oxy Complex includes scenic and props designer Justin Huen, lighting designer R.S. Buck, sound designer John Nobori and dialect coach Lauren Lovett-Cohen. Filming and post-production are by TAKE Creative. The stage manager is Camella Cooper and assistant stage manager is Rose Swaddling Krol. Tanny Jiraprapasuke is the COVID compliance officer. Lexi Sloan produces and Terry Li associate produces for IAMA Theatre Company.  

 Tickets are $15 per household for a single play, and $20 for both shows when purchased at the same time. Patrons who purchase a viewing to a single play will receive a $5 discount when purchasing the second play in a separate transaction.   

For tickets and more information visit http://www.iamatheatre.com

For Anna LaMadrid photos and info visit: https://www.sharkpartymedia.com/annalamadrid

For Sheila Carrasco photos and info visit: https://www.sharkpartymedia.com/sheilacarrasco

Meet Anoush Froundjian & One Woman, Under Brow

Name: Anoush Froundjian

Tell us about you. 

Anoush is a live storyteller and cartoonist living in NYC, who knows her way around a Sharpie. When she isn’t telling stories, she draws her online comic, “Anoush Talks To Stuff,” a webcomic about a girl who talks to objects. Find her on Instagram at @AnoushTalksToStuff and @MeAndABorrowedDress! https://anoushtalkstostuff.wordpress.com

Tell us about your current project? 

ONE WOMAN, UNDER BROW features candid stories written and performed by Anoush Froundjian about her Armenian family; her Armenian day school; and her pursuit to redefine, “Home.” This 30-minute performance piece is told through a web of sometimes comedic and sometimes sharp and poignant storytelling. The piece addresses the cultural differences between Anoush’s background and that of day-to-day, society, revealing how it has both torn down and reshaped the life of a child and now (semi) adjusted adult.

Where are you performing your show and why is it a good fit for your production? 

ONE WOMAN UNDER BROW will be performing as part of Solocom 2019, a 4-day festival of completely new solo works, where all shows presented are 75%-100% new material and created specifically for the fest. Solocom’s goal is to push artists to create a show that is meaningful, personal and to follow the fear. What better a place to talk about growing up on the North Shore with a unibrow and a name like this?

What’s next for you? 

A show about moving to LA and the four, eventful months that lead to me moving back home. (The Armenian theme gallops through this as well, if not more incessantly.)

What is the name of the last show you saw? 

The Armory Improv House Teams at The Tank!

Any advice for your peers?

There’s life beyond high school, and even your own first name.

Show Info:

When: November 23rd @ 8PM at the 2019 Solocom Festival

Where: The Peoples Improv Theater

123 E 24th St. New York, NY 10010.

Ticket Information: Single tickets, $12 and 3-day passes, $30.To purchase tickets and view full festival schedule, please visit https://thepit-nyc.com/solocom-2019 or call: 212-563-7488.

In the Penal Colony Opens 7/18 at Fourth Street Theatre

The Hodgepodge Group and producer Lucy Powis will present Miranda Haymon’s In the Penal Colony at NYTW’s Fourth Street Theatre (79 East 4th Street between Bowery and 2nd Avenue, New York, NY 10003), July 11-28. Performances will be on Thursday, July 11 at 7:30pm, Friday, July 12 at 7:30pm, Saturday, July 13 at 2pm, Saturday, July 13 at 7:30pm, Sunday, July 14 at 2pm, Sunday, July 14 at 7:30pm, Tuesday, July 16 at 7:30pm, Wednesday, July 17 at 7:30pm, Thursday, July 18 at 7:30pm, Friday, July 19 at 7:30pm, Saturday, July 20 at 2pm, Saturday, July 20 at 7:30pm, Sunday, July 21 at 2pm, Sunday, July 21 at 7:30pm, Tuesday, July 23 at 7:30pm, Wednesday, July 24 at 7:30pm, Thursday, July 25 at 7:30pm, Friday, July 26 at 7:30pm, Saturday, July 27 at 2pm, Saturday, July 27 at 7:30pm, and Sunday, July 28 at 2pm. Tickets ($35 General; $45 Premium) are available for advance purchase at www.nytw.org or by calling 212-460-5475. The performance will run approximately 70 minutes, with no intermission. 
Adapted from Franz Kafka’s short story of the same name, In the Penal Colony investigates the performance of power, patriarchy and punishment. Three black men convene in an unnamed penal colony, asking what it means for them to exist in the media, when observed, when consumed, when punished.
The cast will feature Jamar Brathwaite (Much Ado About Nothing at The Public Theater; The Three Musketeers with Classical Theater of Harlem), David Glover (The Fever at La MaMa; Vandals at The Tank), and Dhari Noel (Telegraph Bois at Ars Nova; Floater, Ride with Cherry Picking) with Set Design by Emmie Finckel (Athena at JACK;Riot Antigone at La MaMa), Lighting Design by Cha See (Cute Activist at Bushwick Starr; The Triumphant with Target Margin Theatre), and Sound Design by Valentine Monfeuga (Let’s Get Ready Together at The Tank; Assistant on The Rape of the Sabine Women, By Grace B. Matthias with The Playwrights Realm). 
In the Penal Colony is part of Next Door at NYTW which provides a home for companies and artists who are producing their own work. This initiative provides each project with subsidized resources and space for development and performance in the Fourth Street Theatre. As part of an ongoing effort to expand support for artists at every stage of their careers, this series served over 300 artists in the first two years alone.
Miranda Haymon (Playwright/Director)  is a Princess Grace Award/Honoraria-winning writer, director and deviser of performance originally from Boston. Her recent projects include Mondo Tragic at The National Black Theatre, Erotophobia at Fordham University, and Eclipsed at Dartmouth College where she co-taught Contemporary Theater. She is an Artist-in-Residence at Roundabout Theatre Company; previously as the 2017/18 Directing Fellow, currently the Artistic Development Associate. Miranda is Resident Director at The Tank, a New Georges Affiliate Artist and 2019 Audrey Resident, a Space on Ryder Farm 2019 Creative Resident, member of the Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab, the Wingspace Mentorship Program, a 2019/20 New York Theatre Workshop 2050 Directing Fellow, a Manhattan Theatre Club Directing Fellow, and a former Allen Lee Hughes Directing Fellow at Arena Stage. Miranda is a graduate of Wesleyan University where she double majored in German Studies and Theater and was awarded the Rachel Henderson Theater Prize in Directing. Upcoming: We Are Proud To Present… (Sarah Lawrence College), Exception to the Rule(Roundabout Underground).  www.mirandahaymon.com 
Lucy Powis (Producer) is a dramaturg, producer, and arts administrator who hails from Toronto. She is a Literary Assistant at Abrams Artists Agency, and previously held seasonal positions in the Artistic departments of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and Roundabout Theatre Company. She has developed work with Fresh Ground Pepper and NYTW’s 2050 Fellowship. Recent credits include producing [wave emoji] (Ars Nova’s ANT Fest), associate producing Between the Threads: Jewish Women Project (HERE), producing PROSPERITY!, and dramaturging How to Mourn an American (LPAC’s Rough Draft Festival). She is a recent graduate of Columbia’s MFA Dramaturgy program and a proud member of LMDA. www.lucypowis.com 
The Hodgepodge Group (Producer) is a producing entity and community of artists, organizers, and scholars led by Miranda Haymon and Rose Beth Johnson-Brown that has created live performance and moving images alongside direct political action initiatives since 2017. By requiring all associated productions to integrate direct action into their work, they support art that makes change artistically and practically. Their work has been seen at Capital Fringe, Panorama Philly and The Tank. www.thehodgepodgegroup.com 

Theater 2020 presents THE CRADLE WILL ROCK!

Theater 2020 presents Marc Blitstein’s musical masterwork:

BROOKLYN, NY May 8, 2019 – THEATER 2020, Brooklyn Heights’ NY award winning professional theater company is pleased to announce its June 2019 run of the masterwork “THE CRADLE WILL ROCK,” in a limited run of 16 performances (indoors & out) Friday, June 7th – Sunday, June 30th, 2019.

Press is invited beginning Saturday, June 8th at 2:30pm.

Marc Blitzstein’s riveting musical The Cradle will Rock was born in 1937 during the Great Depression. Cradle sings a tale of the downtrodden, the 99%, who ultimately rise together. In Cradle we see artists selling out to the wealthy, healthcare influenced by big money, the press owned by big business, the church controlled by its donors and war encouraged for corporate greed. Sound familiar? Cradle’s genesis, and the events surrounding its opening night, represents a seminal moment in American Musical Theater history. A video of the original producer, John Houseman, describing that amazing opening can be found here:  https://youtu.be/_LDb0fn4Uek

Creative team: Director David Fuller, Music Director/Pianist Brian Fitzsousa, Costume Designer Sarah Constable, Choreographer Judith Jarosz, Production Stage Manager Nat DiMario, Assistant Stage Manager Kristina Voznick .  

Cast:  Desiree Baxter*, Debra Thais Evans*, David Fuller*, Fred Frabotta, Scott Harrison*, Kate Holland*, Zoe Kanter, Ellen Martin, Alex Shafer*, Jeneen Terrana*, Kristofer Thornton*, Hannah Viederman. (*Appearing courtesy of Actors Equity Association)

Venues: The Great Room at ART NY studios at 138 South Oxford Streetin Brooklyn. Convenient to all trains: B, C, D, G, N, R, Q, 2, 3, 4, 5, and the LIRR.

Cadman Plaza Park War Memorial lawn area atFulton and Tillary Streets in Brooklyn Heights. Subways: 2, 3, 4, 5 to Borough Hall, N, R to Court Street, A, F to Jay Street, C to High Street.

Dates and Times: Please note the varied dates & times.

Great Room ART NY: Fri. 6/7 8pm, Sat. 6/8@2:30pm, Sun. 6/9@2:30pm, Wed. 6/12 @8pm, Thur. 6/13@8pm, Fri. 6/14@8pm, Wed. 6/19@8pm, Thur. 6/20@8pm, Fri. @6/218pm, (NO PERF SAT & SUN, JUNE 22 & 23!) Wed. 6/26@8pm, Thur. 6/27 @8pm, Fri. 6/28@8pm Sat. 6/29@8pm, Sun. 6/30@8pm. 

Cadman Plaza Park, War Memorial lawn. Sat. & Sun. June 15 & 16, both at 6PM. (note early curtain in park) Running time: 120 min.

Tickets and Reservations:

Tickets: $40.00 general, $30.00 senior & students

Credit card purchases through Brown Paper Tickets at th2020cradle.bpt.me

Cash only at the door tickets may be reserved at theater2020@gmail.com 

Cadman Plaza Park, all tickets FREE, no reservations required.

Theater 2020 “Visions for a New Millennium”

“Theater 2020 has once again proven that you can easily delight an audience when you have 1,000 times more imagination than funding!”  – The Huffington Post

Director’s Note: “THE CRADLE WILL ROCK”

THE CRADLE WILL ROCK, A Musical Of, By and For the People!

Book, Music & Lyrics by Marc Blitzstein, Directed by David Fuller

Musical Director/Pianist Brian Fitzsousa, Choreographer Judith Jarosz

Marc Blitzstein’s The Cradle will Rock was born in 1937 during the Great Depression. Cradle sings a tale of the downtrodden, the 99%, who ultimately rise together. In Cradle we see artists selling out to the wealthy, healthcare influenced by big money, the press owned by big business, the church controlled by its donors and war encouraged for corporate greed. Sound familiar? We laugh at the lampooned stereotypes, all the while discovering what our hero Larry Foreman knows: when we work together the “Cradle Will Rock!”

Upon hearing a rendition of the song, A Nickel Under Your Foot, Brecht encouraged Blitzstein:  “Why don’t you write a piece about all kinds of prostitution – the press, the church, the courts, the arts, the whole system?” He did and dedicated it to his friend, “to Bert Brecht.”

Blitzstein called Cradle a labor opera, composed in a style falling somewhere between realism, romance, Vaudeville, comic strip, Gilbert & Sullivan, Brecht and Agit Prop. He wrote, “The characters in The Cradle Will Rock are two-dimensional; types, rather than individuals. In a sense they are cartoon characters, larger than life, sometimes even larger than theatre life. The Cradle is thus a kind of modern morality play.”

Cradle’s genesis, and the events surrounding its opening night, represents a seminal moment in American Musical Theater history. A video of the original producer, John Houseman, describing that amazing opening can be found here:  https://youtu.be/_LDb0fn4Uek The Cradle Will Rock, with its sharp, witty and sometimes poignant call to arms against oppression, is as timely today as when it was first performed in 1937.

Multi Award winning & nominated (OOBR, NYIT, GLADD awards) producing team of David Fuller & Judith Jarosz

Theater 2020, Inc., Visions for a New Millennium, Brooklyn Heights’ first professional theater company, was founded in 2010 and represents the natural culmination of many years in the performing arts by its Producing Artistic Directors, Judith Jarosz and David Fuller, and its board members. Jarosz has performed, directed, choreographed or produced on Broadway and off, at major regional houses, and the New York City Opera. In her years at the helm of Theater Ten Ten Jarosz produced 49 main stage productions, together with countless cabarets, workshops, readings and special events. Fuller has acted nationwide, directed regionally and in NYC, and his 25-plus years in theater includes six years at the helm of Off Broadway’s Jean Cocteau Repertory, as well as seasons in partnership with Jarosz at Theater Ten Ten. All told, Fuller has produced 64 Off Broadway and NYC Indie Theatre productions, in addition to staged reading and music series, workshops and educational outreach programs. They have together or singularly produced tours of 21 plays and musicals and have been recognized with multiple awards and nominations from many institutions including, The National GLADD awards, OOBR Awards, Nytheatre.com People of the Year, and New York Innovative Theater Awards. Hundreds of thousands of people have seen their work, children, students, adults and seniors.

Our Mission

Theater 2020, Inc., Visions for a New Millennium is dedicated to producing classic and contemporary plays and musicals for a 21st Century audience and to providing a nurturing atmosphere for both emerging artists and seasoned professionals. We are dedicated to reaching out to the community and to producing quality theater at affordable prices, utilizing established professionals and fostering young artists as they emerge into the theatrical mainstream, with a particular emphasis on providing more opportunities for women in theater.

The only professional union theater company based in Brooklyn Heights, Theater 2020 produces everything from classic theater to contemporary satire, with forays into musicals and light opera, making them immediate to modern audiences using both innovative and traditional approaches. We believe live performance is a vital part of a healthy culture and that it is through theater that audiences are engaged dynamically in today’s issues and in perpetual questions of the human condition.

Through our many audience outreach programs, we offer free and deeply discounted tickets because we believe theater must be for everyone, and no one should be deprived of the experience due to economic status. Through our educational initiatives we are firmly committed to the idea that today’s youth is tomorrow’s audience, and we work with educators to provide opportunities for students as interns and assistants.

Theater 2020, Inc. produces in Brooklyn, Manhattan and elsewhere, including the under-served Greene County in New York’s Catskill Mountains.                          

Meet Sabina England & Allah Earth: The Cycle of Life

Sabina EnglandName: Sabina England

Tell us about you. 

I am a filmmaker, playwright and performance artist. I am profoundly deaf and cannot hear but I work with musicians a lot in my projects. I just won a Jury Award at Lady Filmmakers Film Festival in Beverly Hills, California last month for my short sign language poetry film, “Deaf Brown Gurl,” which I wrote, filmed, directed, produced and edited.

Tell us about your current project? 

I wrote and created “Allah Earth: The Cycle of Life” which is a solo multimedia performance show with sign language, mime, music, video and movement. I incorporated elements from traditional South Asian dances and Sufi poetry into my show, creating an unique deaf theatrical experience for both deaf and hearing audiences.

Where are you performing your show and why is it a good fit for your production? 

I am performing “Allah Earth: The Cycle of Life” at New York International Fringe Festival here in New York City. I believe New York City is a great fit because of the rich diversity of so many cultures and communities. My show appeals to everyone, not just for Deaf or brown people, but for anybody who has wondered about the meaning of life and why we are here on Earth.

What’s next for you? 

After I am done with New York International Fringe Festival, I will write, direct and produce a short silent narrative film about an undocumented man and deaf woman who fall in love together.

What is the name of the last show you saw? 

No Exit, by Jean-Paul Sartre, produced by SATE Theatre in St. Louis, Missouri

Any advice for your peers?

Don’t worry what everyone thinks of you. Just focus on doing what makes you happy and keep going with your dreams. You are here on Earth for yourself, not to please anybody or make others happy.

Show Information: 

WHEN: October 21 (7:00pm), October 23 (4:45pm), October 27 (1:15pm)

WHERE: 685 Washington St, New York, NY 10014

TICKETS: https://www.sabinaengland.com/allahearth.html

Follow on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/Sabina_England/

Meet Fengar Gael & Sycorax, Cyber Queen of Qamara

SycoraxPostcardFrontName: Fengar Gael

Tell us about you. 

I don’t sleep well; I keep dreaming that I’m a resident alien in a plutocracy led by a miserly, mean souled, tinpot dictator who has tricked us into allowing the ethics of business to infest every aspect of life. My mother said I was born wanting to re-stage the world, but since I’ve failed miserably, I drink too much, eat too much, read too much appalling news, and because I’m a playwright, I’m also subject to bipolar-manic-depression with delusions of grandeur and multiple personality disorder. I can trace the origin of these afflictions to a childhood of constant traveling in and out of the country which may explain why I write plays that take me to unfamiliar worlds and feature characters of diverse races and ethnicities from the past and future. For the past ten years New York has become my heart’s home, a great melting pot city where going to the theatre is a way of life. I have new friends and am part of the League of Professional Theatre Women whose members have enriched my hermit’s life beyond imagining.

Tell us about your current project? 

The play, Sycorax: Cyber Queen of Qamara, is a comic drama originally intended as a prequel to The Tempest. Shakespeare only mentioned that Sycorax was a witch from Algiers who was exiled to an island where she gave birth to a deformed boy named Caliban. In my play, Sycorax has waited 500 years to tell her side of the story to the widest possible audience: the World Wide Web of the Internet. She does so through her avatars, but I won’t give away the plot except to say that Sycorax feels moral outrage at the continuing gender imbalance of power in a world controlled by men who value their arsenals more than their artists. I’m thrilled that the fearless Ego Actus Theatre Company has taken on the challenge of bringing the play to vivid life by their inspired Artistic Director, Joan Kane, whose vision of the play happily resembles my own. We are blessed with a fantastic cast of actors and theater artists contributing to this production: the scenery, the costumes, the lights and projections are going to be beyond anything I had dared to imagine.

Where are you performing your show and why is it a good fit for your production? 

The play is being performed at HERE which has already garnered a following of brave souls who are passionate about innovative (even subversive) theatre. Both HERE and the Ego Actus Theatre Company believe in theatre as a fusion of art forms: with dialog that aspires to poetry, with music, dance and artful costumes, scenery and multi-media projections.

What’s next for you? 

The Detroit Repertory Theatre is producing my play, The House on Poe Street, in January of 2019. Another play, Smile Like a Knife, is a current finalist at two theatres sponsoring contests, and I’m currently writing Passing Parades that’s turning into a louche tale of the supernatural about an idealistic woman who undergoes a radical transformation after a bomb shatters the lives of marchers gathered to celebrate the centennial of women’s suffrage. The play leaps backwards to the 1850s when the suffrage and abolitionists movements were aligned, but faced radical opposition. The play will be given a concert reading at the League of Professional Theatre Women’s Julia’s Reading Room series at the Jefferson Market Library on December 11th.

What is the name of the last show you saw? 

The Winning Side by James Wallert, a post-modern collage of a play produced by the Epic Theatre about Wernher von Braun, a former Nazi rocket engineer who interacts with his French lover and the Americans who steal him away to help claim the moon and conquer the world.

Any advice for your peers?

Drink wine, read poetry, and try not to commodify yourselves in a world where everything seems quantifiable — even plays are given numerical scores. If playwriting is the literary form that best expresses your passions, then don’t wait for commissions or guaranteed productions. To quote Emily Dickinson, “Be a fire that lights itself.” Also in this age of constant surveillance and identity politics, it’s best to resist definition. If the great evolutionary triumph of our species is the imagination and capacity to reason, then to define ourselves in terms of race, age, gender or ethnicity is to be forever stranded on a smaller planet. When we allow anyone to police our imaginations, to condemn us to writing plays only about people like ourselves, then we’re doomed. The best thing about our capacity for abstract thinking is that it allows us to imagine what it’s like to be someone else (saint or sinner), so we might become more empathetic. I should add that I truly believe there’s a great future for theatre. Perhaps it’s naive, but I think people will attend plays more than ever before, if only to heal their damaged attention spans, and to focus on the perpetual wide screen of the stage where no bullying cameras are telling them precisely where to look, no soundtracks assaulting their ears, where they’re no longer isolated but in the company of other human beings, and where their presence actually matters because going to the theatre is a creative act.

Show Information: 
DATES: November 1-18th
VENUE: HERE  145 6th Avenue one block south of Spring Street
TICKET URL: http://www.HERE.org or (212) 352-3101

More info is available at www.egoactus.com/sycorax.html

Meet WalkUpArts and odysseus tied to the masT

Screen Shot 2018-07-09 at 9.19.47 AM.png
Tell us about you. 
WalkUpArts is a theatre company founded in 2014. We are dedicated to exploring the audience-artist relationship through multi-disciplinary, intimate, and communal experiences and creating a space for people to make eye contact in. The core WalkUpArts team is Audrey Frischman, Matt Engle, Stefanie Harris, and myself, Philip Santos Schaffer. For odysseus tied to the masT, we are working with Sarah Stites (director) and Andres Santiago Pina (performer). We also have a team that has been working on all five shows, including Taylor Riccio (set), Jorge Olivo (sound), Christopher Cancel-Pomales (light), Maureen Freedman (costume), and Anna Woodruff (dramaturg). Our stage manager is Dan Kelly. I’m a theatre artist, and the writer of the five plays in this series. I am interested in creating theatrical events in which the audience’s participation is a vital part of the success of the production. I recently graduated with my MFA in Dramaturgy from Columbia University, and outside of WalkUpArts, I am the incoming Literary and Community Manager of Pipeline Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate, Associate Archivist, and Ensemble Member with The Living Theatre.
Tell us about your current project? 
odysseus tied to the masT is the fifth play in SMALL PLAYS FOR GIANTS – a five play series of highly interactive solo performances for intimate audiences, which we have been producing between February and July of this year. Odysseus is determined to hear the sirens’ song. But first, he needs the audience’s help to ensure he won’t jump to his death. odysseus tied to the masT is a play about the drive for immortality and the desire to control our own legacies. Can the blood-soaked Odysseus survive the experience of absolute beauty, and if he does, will he finally feel clean enough to return home? In the words of the director, “It’s like an Instagram Live story about what Odysseus is thinking before he listens to the sirens! It’s also like the “Blow winds!” monologue from Lear! It’s also like a Drake video (well, things to aspire to…)!”
Where are you performing your show and why is it a good fit for your production? 
3 of the 5 plays in SMALL PLAYS FOR GIANTS, including odysseus, have been or will be performed at The Tank (the other two tour to audience members’ bathtubs and closets). The Tank has been an ideal space for us to work in for this series. The folks at The Tank have always been incredibly welcoming, and have worked with us to make sure we are able to bring our plays to life in all the ways we envision. It’s exciting to be in the building, there’s a constant buzz and energy, and it’s thrilling to be a part of it all. I also have to mention that the design team for this series is absolutely doing an amazing job in transforming the theatre and world of the play with each performance we do. For this one, they’ve completely upended the “normal” layout and set-up of the theatre, and created a vivid and wonderful world for the audience to step in to. I’m really excited for enter into what they have created.
What’s next for you? 
This is the last play in SMALL PLAYS FOR GIANTS, and closes out our season. Our next step is to talk about the past five months, figure out what worked, and make our next plans. We’ve always got projects in the works, and at any time any one of them may spring up and become the next big thing, but we haven’t committed to anything just yet. Personally, I’m excited to have time to focus on some writing projects that I’ve had to put on hold as I focused on editing and producing the past few months. I’ve had a nice research and gestation period (which is to say, I read books that may be influential on the train and before I fall asleep), and I feel ready to begin putting that into action.
What is the name of the last show you saw? 
Outside of WalkUpArts, I’m also a part of Pipeline Theatre Company, and I saw five play readings that came out of the PlayLab, at the Jefferson Market Library. These plays came out of a year of development with Pipeline, and it was really exciting to see completed drafts of plays I’ve been seeing bits and pieces of all year!
Any advice for your peers?
My peers have taught me a whole lot of what I “know,” so I’m not sure what I have to teach them back. I will say this – a lot of my best projects have started off as my worst ideas. The WalkUpArts tagline is “Follow your what-ifs,” and I think this mentality has brought us far. We try to jump on the dream, and sometimes it works in ways that none of us can initially imagine. Certainly doing five plays over the course of six months seemed to be an impossible task when we first started talking about it. But here we are, about to open the last play in the series. And it’s definitely been exhausting, but also one of the best experiences of my life.

Show Information:

Dates: July 14, 2018, 9:30 p.m. July 17, 2018, 7 p.m. July 19, 2018, 9:30 p.m. July 23, 2018, 7 p.m.
Venue: The Tank 312 West 36th Street / First Floor / New York, NY 10018

Meet Lauren Maul & Apologies From Men

CaptureName: Lauren Maul

What is your current project? Apologies From Men– it’s a concert and an audio and visual album.

Where are you performing your show and why is it a good fit for your production?

I’ll be performing the concert at the Peoples Improv Theater on their lovely Striker Mainstage. The energy there is always positive and I’ve had fun producing other shows in that space. Also, there’s a piano, a projector, and lots of room for me and my friends to make music and dance around- just what I need for this concert.

What’s next for you?

I like to take little creative breaks and let the ideas come to me- but in the meantime, I’ll be getting back to my regular seasonal shows “Dudes Being Dudes Being Dudes” (a stand-up showcase where ladies and LGBTQ folks dress up as straight dudes and perform comedy) and “Bitchcraft” which is a variety show at Sid Gold’s Request room that I co-produce with the amazing Selena Coppock.

What is the name of the last show you saw?

Technically, it’s not the most recent show I saw but it’s the first one that popped in my mind because it was super memorable: “90210! The Musical!” I laughed the entire time- and still laugh about it when I think about it.

Any advice for your peers?

People told me many times to “focus on one thing”, like “just music” or “just filmmaking”- but that’s silly. My advice is, have lots of passions and follow the ones that call to you.

Want More?

Website: http://www.laurenmaul.org/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/maulface/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheConnieHowe

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/laurenmaul/

Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/user6362368

Lauren Maul is a Creator/Producer/Writer/Composer/Artist/Filmmaker/Teacher/​Good Witch living in Brooklyn with a husband, a dog, and a gang of cats.

Show Information:

When: March 9th at 9:30pm
Where: The Peoples Improv Theater (The Striker Mainstage)
Tickets: https://thepit-nyc.com/event/2018-03-09-apologies-from-men-the-concert

And Another One:Midtown International Theatre Festival Ends After 18 Seasons

Of course, I am flooded with emotions. Of course, I understand. To my indie artists, dig deep, find a way, continue to create.

Midtown International Theatre Festival Ends After 18 Season

NY, NY – Broadway World News Desk – Creator and executive producer of the Midtown International Theatre Festival, John Chatterton, announced today that he will be retiring the MITF until further notice. In a statement to the press, Chatterton said:

“On looking back over 18 seasons of the MITF, I have many memories, most of them good, some not so much, and some hilarious. But I’ve had some reverses in recent years that have forced me to hang up the gloves. Hence, this retirement memo.

When you get to be 71, you accumulate a few dings on your person — with some people, more dings than others, some dings going deeper than others. When you start to feel like my first car, a ’65 Dodge Dart (this was in ’79), you know it’s time to re-evaluate your priorities.

The financial situation has also grown more parlous. When I started the MITF (in 2000), I was making $65 an hour as a tech writer on Wall Street. Now I’m on Social Security. I can no longer underwrite the Festival budget out of my own pocket.

(A few years ago I moved back to Massachusetts, for personal reasons, and the strains of commuting to NYC also take their toll.)

The last straw was recent lawsuit. It was one of those cases where you’re damned if you win and damned if you lose, because either way you have to pay legal costs.

I have lots of energy and ideas left. Also an increasing urge to travel the world, starting with a farewell tour (in a much better car) down the East Coast to Florida. So, as the Governator said, ‘I’ll be b-a-a-a-c-k!’

Thank you, New York, for giving my life meaning for 24 years. Thank you for the opportunity to serve that occasionally fickle muse, the Theatre, in all the roles I’ve experienced. Good luck and God bless. We’ll be in touch!”

In the summer of 2000, in midtown Manhattan, the Midtown International Theatre Festival (MITF) began celebrating the diversity of theatre.

MITF emphasizes imaginative, low-tech staging. In addition to offering a safe environment to develop innovative theatre, the MITF is devoted to keeping costs for participants down. This means there are now no participation fees for any of our festivals!

The MITF welcomes submission of any kind of stage play, musical or otherwise, new or revived, mainstream or focused on an ethnic or cultural niche.

The Festival is the brainchild of John Chatterton, creator of OOBR (“the off-off-broadway review”), which for many years was the only publication exclusively devoted to covering the Off-Off-Broadway scene. Mr. Chatterton started the MITF as a way to present the finest Off-Off-Broadway talent in convenience, comfort, and safety. He also produces the Short Play Lab and the Midwinter Madness Short Play Festival.

Meet Eric Michael Parker & Whiskey Pants: The Mayor of Williamsburg

Name: Eric Michael Parker

What is your current project? Whiskey Pants: The Mayor of Williamsburg

Where are you performing your show and why is it a good fit for your production?

HERE Arts Center. It’s an appropriately intimate, immersive space for our new work.

What’s next for you?

World domination!

What is the name of the last show you saw?

1984. What a mind-blowing production.

Any advice for your peers?

I got an incredible piece of advice a couple years ago. Your ego has nothing to do with your work. So both compliments and criticism you might get are not for you, but for that little artistic muse in your brain 🙂

Want More?

Website: ericmichaelparker.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EricMichaelParkerTenorActor/

Twitter: I don’t tweet but I support your right to do so. Tweet away.

Instagram: @ericpahkah

You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/user/shoutoutloud8

Eric is a recent SoCal transplant grateful to be making his NYC debut here at Whiskey Pants.  Top winner of Weill Foundation’s International Lotte Lenya Competition, recognizing performers with dramatic and musical versatility. Eric’s career has brought him to places across the globe,  from the Tokyo Disney Resort to Operafestival di Roma in Rome’s Piazza Navona.  Select credits: Freddy: My Fair Lady (MTW, Prather), Harold Bride: Titanic (Moonlight Prod.), Melchior: Spring Awakening(Riverside Rep), Robert: The Drowsy Chaperone (Norris PAC), Henry: Next to Normal (SDMT). B.M. from Chapman U. ericmichaelparker.com

Show Information:

DATES: September 28 – October 28; Wednesday – Saturday at 8:30PM/Saturdays & Sundays at 4:00PM

VENUE: HERE, 145 6th Ave. (Enter on Dominick, 1 Block South of Spring); For Tickets & Information: visit here.org or call 212-352-3101

TICKETS: $35/$50; http://here.org/shows/detail/1938/