Modern Love Story LUNGS Up Next at the Kitchen Theatre, 3/26-4/13

Modern Love Story LUNGS Up Next at the Kitchen Theatre, 3/26-4/13

How is it that British playwright Duncan Macmillan has written such a perfect play for Ithaca? The young couple in LUNGS care deeply about the earth and their responsibility to protect it, and this awareness of the big picture affects all their decisions, large and small. LUNGS is a modern love story, filled with concern and hope for the future in equal measure. Previews are March 26 - 28, the press opening is on March 29, and the play runs through April 13 at the Kitchen Theatre Company.

Macmillan is among Britain's new generation of playwrights who are stripping the theatrical event down to just the essentials - text, movement and actors. This sparseness allows us to zero in on the ideas, emotions and moment-to-moment shifts between the characters. Macmillan's writing mixes the ironic, the comic and the dramatic with wonderfully surprising wit.

In LUNGS, we meet a thirty-something couple with difficult choices ahead. Having a baby seems like the right "next step," but what are a thinking, caring man and woman to do when they consider the future of their child against the backdrop of the polar vortex freezing the northern hemisphere, ice caps melting, and carbon footprints growing? Bring a child into this environmental mayhem? How is our biological imperative to be satisfied? And, should it?

We travel a lifetime with "M" and "W" as they negotiate everything from giving birth, to staying together, to keeping the planet alive. The dialogue is alternately contemporary and poetic, and the conversation is engaging and provocative - as current as today's weather and tomorrow's forecast.

Joining the Kitchen Theatre Company as director is Michele Minnick, who directed the KTC's production of The Gene Pool many seasons ago. Ms. Minnick is a writer, director and performer. She says of LUNGS, "What I love about the play is that Macmillan tells the story of these two complicated people in a layered and complex relationship, and juxtaposes that with the bigger picture of a world in decline. But the playwright does it without diminishing the pain, the joy, the hilarity of the personal stuff, or the seriousness of the big picture."

Minnick leads an all-Equity cast of two: long-time Kitchen veteran Jesse Bush (The Mystery of Irma Vep, Opus, Red Light Winter at the Kitchen, among many others) and new to the Kitchen, Anne Troup (Ivanov at Classic Stage Company; films Savages, Bright Morning and television, Beverlywood). Tyler M. Perry (Venus in Fur and Heroes this season) designs the set and lights, Anthony Mattana creates the sound design (Heroes, Black Pearl Sings! in the current season) and Lisa Boquist (Heroes, Black Pearl Sings!, Cock this season) designs the costumes. The Stage Manager is AEA member Jennifer Schilansky.

In conjunction with the Ithaca premiere of LUNGS, the Kitchen Theatre Company will present a number of ancillary events: free pre-show discussions with local experts on issues related to the play and post-show talk backs with the cast and artistic director. Pre-show talks are scheduled for Thursday, April 3 and Thursday, April 10 at 6:30pm. Talkbacks are scheduled for Friday, April 4 and Friday, April 11. Please check our website for more events: www.kitchentheatre.org.

Performances:

Wednesday, March 26 at 7:30pm - Preview

Thursday, March 27 at 7:30pm - Preview

Friday, March 28 at 8:00pm - Preview

Saturday, March 29 at 8:00pm - Opening Night

Sunday, March 30 at 4:00pm

Wednesday, April 2 at 7:30pm

Thursday, April 3 at 2:00pm

Thursday, April 3 at 7:30pm (Pre-show talk at 6:30pm)

Friday, April 4 at 8:00pm (Followed by a talkback with actors and artistic director)

Saturday, April 5 at 8:00pm

Sunday, April 6 at 4:00pm

Wednesday, April 9 at 7:30pm (Pay What You Can night)

Thursday, April 10 at 7:30pm (Pre-show talk at 6:30pm)

Friday, April 11 at 8:00pm (Followed by a talkback with actors and director)

Saturday, April 12 at 8:00pm

Sunday, April 13 at 4:00pm - closing performance

The Kitchen Theatre Company is located at 417 W. Martin Luther King, Jr. / State Street, Ithaca, NY 14850. Call the Kitchen Theatre Box Office at 607-272-0570 (Monday - Friday 12-6pm, Saturday 4-6:30pm, Sunday 12-2:30pm) or buy online at www.kitchentheatre.org. Tickets: Previews: $27; Regular performances: $34 adult, $31 senior; Opening Night: $37 adult, $34 senior; Thursday Matinee: $24; Students (with ID): $28; Student Rush (available 30 minutes before the performance): $15.

Bold, intimate, engaging... Kitchen Theatre Company (KTC), now in its 23rd season, is downtown Ithaca's critically acclaimed and nationally recognized year-round professional theater company, specializing in regional and world premiere plays and musicals. KTC's intimate 99-seat theater is in its newly renovated, LEED-certified building in the West End neighborhood of downtown Ithaca, New York. KTC is the first not-for-profit recipient of the David R. Strong Memorial "Small Business of the Year" Award from the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce and receives public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency, and the Tompkins County Tourism Program. The Kitchen Theatre Company also receives general operating support from the Shubert Foundation.

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