LAByrinth Theater Company Announces 2005-06 Season

LAByrinth Theater Company (Co-Artistic Directors Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Ortiz and Executive Director Steve Asher) have announced the 2005-06 season, which will include two plays by José Rivera (The Motorcycle Diaries).  Their 14th season, which will once again be in residence at The Public Theater, will also include the LAB's annual free play reading festival, The Barn Series.

Celebrity Charades, LAByrinth's popular annual benefit featuring film, television, and stage stars playing a fearsome and hilarious speed charades competition, will kick off the season on Monday, September 26.  

The season will commence with a developmental production of
Rivera's MASSACRE (Sing to Your Children), directed by Kate Whoriskey and written especially for LAByrinth's company of actors.  For six years, Granville, New Hampshire has lived in psychological and physical terror of one of its citizens, a mysterious, nearly omniscient man named Joe. Seven ordinary people stage a revolt and murder the man who has murdered their town .... or do they?  MASSACRE (Sing to Your Children) will play a limited engagement of only 15 performances, October 5 - 23.    

The second developmental production of the season will be Cusi Cram's ALL THE BAD THINGS, which will play a limited 15-performance engagement, beginning performances in late January, 2006.  Fernanda is having a bad day -- a very bad day.  She lives with her ailing mother in a tiny apartment in the West Village, her husband has braces and is unemployed, her brother-in-law has suddenly converted to Mormonism, the creditors wont stop calling AND she finds out her rent stabilized apartment is about to be de-stabilized. Where can the fragile, the artistic, the underemployed find refuge in a city that is no longer kind to its eccentrics and Bohemians? Is Manhattan over? Are there sane Mormons? ALL THE BAD THINGS asks these questions and a few others, while searching for hope in unexpected places.

LAByrinth will co-produce the world premiere of Mr. Rivera's SCHOOL OF THE AMERICAS with The Public Theater this spring.  Inspired by playwright José Rivera's experiences while he was researching and filming his screen adaptation of The Motorcycle Diaries, SCHOOL OF THE AMERICAS takes place in the Bolivian jungle where Che Guevara is captured and held in a one-room school house.  For two days no one – not the Bolivian President nor the U.S. State Department- is able to decide Che's fate. The young school teacher of the village insists that she be given permission to speak to the famous revolutionary. Her conversation with Che – based on historical fact – comprises the heart of School of the Americas, the latest play from the Academy Award-nominated author of The Motorcycle Diaries, starring LAByrinth Co-Artistic Director and OBIE Award-winner John Ortiz as Che Guevara.

See the plays of tomorrow today.  LAByrinth Theatre Company will host its annual collection of staged readings from exciting up-and-coming playwrights as well as established writers this fall. The Barn Series begins November 28, 2005.  All readings are free and open to the public.  Reservations are required.  

The plays chosen for this year's Barn Series are:

Intríngulis by Carlo Alban
A Small Melodramatic Story
by Stephen Belber
1 + 1
by Eric Bogosian
City of Palms
by Raul Castillo
Pretty Chin Up
by Andrea Ciannavei
All the Bad Things
by Cusi Cram
Untitled by Brett C. Leonard
Going After Alice
by Megan Mostyn-Brown
The Little Flower of East Orange
by Stephen Adly Guirgis
She Talks To Rainbows
by Michael Puzzo 

LAByrinth Theater has produced 38 new American plays including The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Our Lady of 121st Street, Jesus Hopped The 'A' Train, and In Arabia, We'd All Be Kings by Stephen Adly Guirgis; Guinea Pig Solo by Brett C. Leonard; Dutch Heart of Man by Robert Glaudini; The Trail of Her Inner Thigh by Erin Cressida Wilson; Stopless by David Deblinger; Dreaming in Tongues by the LAByrinth Ensemble; Cutting Open Wings by Lidia Ramirez; Queen Latina and Her Power Posse Versus The Evils of Society (a musical comic book for the stage) by David Anzuelo; and Sailor's Song, Where's My Money, A Winter Party, and Dirty Story by John Patrick Shanley.

LAByrinth was founded in 1992 when thirteen actors joined forces to form a place to work.  The idea was to create a home where the group, for three hours each week, could engage in a variety of theatrical exercises designed to push each others' limits and bind together into a tightly knit, uninhibited and impassioned ensemble - one in which each member is given the opportunity and support not only to act, but to write, direct, produce, sweep, paint, hang lights, etcetera.

The fact that the company now consists of 92 members from a wide array of cultural perspectives (including Puerto Rican, Japanese, Israeli, Dominican, Egyptian, Jewish, Irish, Korean, Cuban, Italian, Mexican and African-American) did not occur through some political design.  It grew out of a shared artistic sensibility and a desire to create personal work that reflects the community in which the company lives: New York City.  

LAByrinth is dedicated to developing new plays through a unique creative process.  Each play LAByrinth produces is first presented at the Company's annual Summer Intensive – a concentrated two-week retreat where Company Members and invited guest artists create brand new material and develop current works in progress. By surrounding the playwright with talented and passionate artists, this supportive environment allows freedom of expression and nurtures creativity.

After the Intensive, selected works move to the next stage in the creative process and are presented in one of two public forums in New York City.  These public readings give the playwright and his/her creative team further opportunity to rehearse and explore the text in front of an audience. 

In the Kitchen is a semi-annual, informal reading series where plays in progress are performed in a casual setting, with minimal staging, in front of an invited audience.  The Barn Series is a more formal reading series of plays in progress which are more fully staged and rehearsed. The Barn Series is open free of charge to the general public and considered part of LAByrinth's annual season.

Works presented at The Barn Series and In the Kitchen are considered each year to become a part of future LAByrinth seasons as fully-staged productions.

For information on how to purchase tickets or get a LABPASS, LAByrinth's annual membership, please call LAByrinth at (212) 513-1080 or visit their website at

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