The Hornets' Nest Series to Continue 2/3 with THE ENVELOPE by Alex Lewin


Few experiences can ignite a great conversation like a thrilling night in the theatre. The Hornets' Nest series has theatre-goers itching for that conversation.

The Hornets' Nest series of script-in-hand readings with professional actors and directors returns with three plays investigating the most difficult and controversial questions of today. Following each reading, audience members will have the opportunity to engage in open discussion with key figures from the Rochester community. Since its inception in 2007, the Hornets' Nest series of readings has become nationally recognized and lauded as one of the most innovative theatrical initiatives in the country.

The 2013-2014 series continues on February 3 with The Envelope, by Alex Lewin. In this political thriller, a student posts an article on his blog which catches the attention of the NSA, and when he discovers a mysterious piece of writing by his late father which might reveal wrongdoing by the U.S. Marines in Lebanon in the early 80's, he has a big decision to make. Should "what happens in the field stay in the field"? Or, when U.S. citizens find what they consider to be evidence of wrongdoing by the government, do they have a responsibility to share that evidence? What are the ethics of whistleblowing?

Alex Lewin's plays have been presented and developed at the O'Neill Playwrights Conference, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Chautauqua Theatre Company, Geva Theatre Center, MCC, The New Group, Ensemble Studio Theatre, the ALLIANCE THEATRE, Arena Stage, the New Harmony Project, P73, The Playwrights Realm, the Absolut Gay Theatre Festival (Dublin), New York Theatre Workshop, where he is an Artistic Associate, and The Playwrights' Center, where he was a 2012-13 Jerome Fellow. He has received commissions from La Jolla Playhouse, Ensemble Studio Theatre/Sloan Foundation, and KBEM/Jazz 88 (St. Paul, MN). Alex holds an M.F.A. in Playwriting from the University of California at San Diego.

The reading is directed by Sean Daniels. Following the reading of The Envelope, audience members will have the opportunity to discuss the questions that the play poses with a panel of members of the community brought together specifically for this event. The panel for February 3 includes Gary W. Craig, investigative reporter for the Democrat & Chronicle.

Play readings are at 7:00pm in the Fielding Nextstage. Tickets are free and, due to the popularity of this series, are limited to two per person. Reservations are recommended. Due to anticipated demand, all unclaimed tickets will be released at 6:45pm on the day of performance. Patron discretion is advised: plays deal with adult subject matter. To reserve tickets phone the Box Office: (585) 232-Geva (4382) or reserve online at

Leadership support for the Hornet's Nest is provided by Jack and Barbara Kraushaar, The Mary S. Mulligan Charitable Trust, New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and The New York State Council for the Humanities.

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