Theater for the New City's LOVE ‘N' COURAGE Gala to Honor Charles Busch, 2/25

Theater for the New City's LOVE ‘N' COURAGE Gala to Honor Charles Busch, 2/25

The Pulitzer Prize and OBIE Award-winning Theatre for the New City (TNC) will hold its 10th Annual LOVE 'N' COURAGE benefit gala on Monday, February 25, 2013 at the National Arts Club (15 Gramercy Park South in Manhattan), this year honoring award-winning actor and playwright Charles Busch, it has been announced by Crystal Field, co-founder and artistic director of Theater for the New City. The LOVE 'N' COURAGE celebration will begin with cocktails at 6:30pm, with dinner following at 7:00pm, and performances at 8:00pm. Proceeds benefit the Emerging Playwrights' Program at Theater for the New City, located at 155 First Avenue in the East Village, where it remains one of the few remaining outposts for experimental and political theater in 21st century New York.

Hosts for LOVE 'N' COURAGE are composer and singer Phoebe Legere and playwright/filmmaker Matt Morillo ("Maid of Honor"). The performers at this year's show will include Mr. Busch, The Love Show, dancer/choreographer Kitty Lunn and Infinity Dance, juggler supreme John Grimaldi, Carol Freeman, Luba Mason, KT Sullivan, Tammy Grimes, Drew Pulver, Mark Marcante and Crystal Field.

Now celebrating its 40th anniversary season, Theater for the New City will formally announce at the Feb. 25th event that it has paid off its 25-year mortgage for it permanent home, the theater complex on First Ave. and 10th St.

Numerous plays by Charles Busch have been presented at TNC through the years, starting with his very first play, BEFORE OUR MOTHER'S EYES. Subsequent Busch plays produced there include DIVINE SISTER, SHANGHAI MOON, JUDITH OF BETHULIA and the annual holiday treat, TIMES SQUARE ANGEL. Mr. Bush is the author and star of such plays as The Divine Sister, The Lady in Question, Red Scare on Sunset and Vampire Lesbians of Sodom, which ran five years and is one of the longest-running plays in Off-Broadway history. His play The Tale of the Allergist's Wife ran for 777 performances on Broadway and won Mr. Busch the Outer Circle Critics John Gassner Award and received a Tony nomination for Best Play. He wrote and starred in the film versions of his plays, Psycho Beach Party and Die Mommie Die, the latter of which won him the Best Performance Award at the Sundance Film Festival. In 2003, Mr. Busch received a special Drama Desk Award for career achievement as both performer and playwright. Mr. Busch made his directorial debut with the film A Very Serious Person, which premiered at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival, where it won an honorable mention. He is also the subject of the documentary film The Lady in Question is Charles Busch.

Theatre for the New City is a long-running bastion for new theatrical works. While talented emerging playwrights often find themselves competing for funding with more established writers; Theater for the New City's mission is to offer "love and encouragement" to these struggling artists with its Emerging Playwrights Program. Theater for the New City is a Pulitzer Prize winning community cultural center known for its high artistic standards and community service. One of New York's most prolific theatrical organizations, TNC produces 30-40 premieres of new American plays per year, at least 10 of which are by emerging and young playwrights. Many influential theater artists of the last quarter century have found TNC's Resident Theater Program instrumental to their careers, among them Sam Shepard, Moises Kaufman, Richard Foreman, Charles Busch, Maria Irene Fornes, Miguel Piñero and Academy Award Winners Tim Robbins and Adrien Brody.

"Emerging playwrights are writers of great promise who have yet to fulfill their artistic goals, but whose visions are high," explains Crystal Field, whose Emerging Playwrights Program takes in fledgling and untried writers, offering a nurturing environment where new authors can flourish, and often realize their first fully produced work at Theater for the New City. Ms. Field notes that "love and courage are what a playwright needs to thrive in this field, and 'love and encourage' is what Theater for the New City does!"

Through the Emerging Playwrights Program, up-and-coming writers meet and have access to experienced designers, directors and performers. The emerging playwright is surrounded by dedicated professionals in an atmosphere of supportive collaboration. Theater for the New City has an open-door policy towards new work -- considering plays of any style, genre and political thrust -- and reading every script submitted. The company also produces and commissions plays by some of the better-known American Playwrights such as Maria Irene Fornes, Matt Morillo, Sam Shepard, Eduardo Machado, Ronald Tavel, Amlin Gray and Harry Kondoleon.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning Theater for the New City is committed to developing and nurturing creative talent in the New York City area. Other programs sponsored by the Theater include the Resident Theater Program, Arts-in-Education Program, Summer Street Theater Tour, the Lower East Side Festival of the Arts and, most recently, the Village Halloween Costume Ball. The Emerging Playwrights Program was founded in 1984 as part of the Resident Theater Program, and seeks to create a space where theater artists have room to develop new visions, free of commercial restraint and pressure. Past productions have included works that include song, dance, music, puppetry, poetry, and epic styles of drama, and have garnered 43 OBIE Awards

Tickets to LOVE 'N' COURAGE on Monday, February 25 at the National Arts Club (15 Gramercy Park South, between Irving Place/Park Avenue), are $150. For reservations and additional information, please call 212-254-1109 or visit www.theaterforthenewcity.net

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