The Dirty Blondes to Make FringeNYC Debut with THE TUNNEL PLAY, 8/9-21
The Dirty Blondes, a feminist theater company with a taste for provocation, present this brand new play -- THE TUNNEL PLAY -- by playwright and Artistic Director Ashley Jacobson, directed by Courtney Laine Self, in their first ever production in the New York International Fringe Festival.
This is the fourth original production by the The Dirty Blondes, who also produce three play-in-a-day festivals per year, as well as numerous presentations and collaborations. In its third year of producing, The Dirty Blondes have presented more than twelve theatrical events to more than 1,200 audience members and featured more than 100 artists. Known for their dark and chilling presentation of The American Play, an examination of the cult of fandom for Brett Easton Ellis's American Psycho, The Tunnel Play is poised to be the founders' greatest endeavor yet - an event exposing their brand of theater as an intensely subversive art form, dedicated to creating smart, feminist and striking work.
As the storm of the century threatens New York City, the stories of two women who live in a subway tunnel collide with Colin, a disgruntled everyman at the end of his rope. This new urban myth explores what it means to make dollars, have things, and live a valuable life.
In recent years, we have all seen that natural disasters are true levelers of circumstance -- where no amount of money, power, or influence in this world will save you from an impending flood. Rich or poor, black or white, we all share the same earth space, and are ultimately vulnerable to its whimsy.
The play revolves around two worlds: one of the women in the tunnel, who we will see have created their own family unit and have done what they can to survive; and one of Colin, a man whose survival seems less precarious but is ultimately lost. Colin, who has the all the trimmings of a successful life in New York City: a job, an apartment, a comfortable salary but is unable to ask for what he wants; unable to identify what he wants. His obedience to a system that offers him little fulfillment is infuriating and the luxuries of conformity only bring about his own existential crisis.
Meanwhile, Birdy and Priddy lead their lives on the fringe of society - bereft of any really any comforts. Homeless and taking shelter in the subway stations - the only comforts they have are the ones they find in each other, the scraps left on the street. However, we see them fill their time with purpose and love for each other, chasing childlike dreams and finding beauty in garbage. We learn whether they chose to reject society or were driven to its shadows. We see how they both manage to survive as invisible - living in an alter-reality with nicknames and no histories.
ASHLEY JACOBSON, Playwright/Artistic Director of The Dirty Blondes Ashley is a Brooklyn-based playwright from New Jersey. Plays include Hers, His Beauty, The American Play, The Howling Play, Sin in the City: Interludes, The Miracle Play, and have been presented at The Robert Moss Theater, The Gene Frankel Theater, The Brick Theater, Galapagos Art Space, and The Bleecker Street Theater. She studied Creative Writing at The New School, as well as playwriting at the Einhorn School of Performing Arts. She is a founding member and resident playwright of The Dirty Blondes. She strives to create theater that is smart, feminist, and surprising.
COURTNEY LAINE SELF, DirectorCourtney has worked as director and/or choreographer in NYC for Medium Face Productions, Rebel Theatre Company, and Concrete Temple Theatre. Courtney has her MFA in Directing and was previously the Head of Dance and an Acting/Movement professor at Southern Illinois University. She was the SDC Observer for the workshop of Big Fish with Susan Stroman and has presented at numerous national conferences on topics hovering around the need for evolution of the practice and perception of theater as a genre. www.courtneylaineself.com
ELIZABETH SARKADY, Executive Director of The Dirty BlondesElizabeth is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of The Dirty Blondes. Under her leadership, The Dirty Blondes have presented sold-out works at Galapagos Art Space, The Collapsable Hole, The Bleecker Street Theater, and The Brick Theater. Most recently, she produced a festival titled DETROIT, NY consisting of new works by Detroit-based playwrights brought to the NYC stage. Additionally, Elizabeth serves as the Manager of Business Development at BAM, having previously worked with the Signature Theatre Company, the New York Musical Theatre Festival, and Paper Mill Playhouse. Elizabeth is a proud Michigander and graduated with a BA in Arts Management from Western Michigan University.
CAST includes LAURA BOGDANSKI, DONDRIE BURNHAM, BRETT EPSTEIN, RYAN GUESS AND CHELSEA WOLOCKO.
DESIGN TEAM includes MICHAEL O'CONNOR (LIGHTS), JACOB SUBOTNICK (SOUND), HOLLY CAIN (COSTUMES), AND STEPHEN CYR (SET/PROPS).
THE DIRTY BLONDES (www.thedirtyblondes.org)The Dirty Blondes' mission is to develop beautiful and subversive new works of theater by fostering a community of diverse artists dedicated to creativity and collaboration. Founded in Brooklyn, The Dirty Blondes, founded and managed by Elizabeth Sarkady and Ashley Jacobson, have presented sold-out works at The Collapsable Hole, The Bleecker Street Theater, The Secret Theater, and The Brick Theater. In total, The Dirty Blondes have produced more than 12 shows, featuring the work of more than 100 artists. Winners of Outstanding Lighting, Outstanding Direction, and Outstanding Production of a New Play for THE AMERICAN PLAY at The Planet Connections Theater Festivity (2012).