Curious Theatre to Open RANCHO MIRAGE on Halloween

Curious Theatre to Open RANCHO MIRAGE on Halloween

Curious Theatre Company, in association with the National New Play Network (NNPN), presents Steven Dietz's Rancho Mirage, directed by Artistic Company Member Christopher Leo. The production runs October 31 - December 7, 2013 at 1080 Acoma Street, Denver. The opening night is November 2, 2013, at 8 p.m.

From the playwright of Yankee Tavern comes a World Premiere of hilarious proportions. When six longtime friends gather for one final dinner party, the evening unfolds with sidesplitting surprises, alarming secrets and shocking bombshells that none of them will soon forget. Dietz's dark comedy asks what connects us when our youth, our dreams and our last bottle of wine are gone?

The National New Play Network created the Continued Life of New Plays Fund (CLNPF), to develop an alternative-producing model, and change the way theaters and audiences understand the term "world premiere." A flagship program, CLNPF supports three or more theaters that choose to mount the same new play within a twelve-month period. The result is a "Rolling World Premiere" through which the playwright develops a new work with at least three different creative teams, for three different communities of patrons, ensuring the resulting play is of the highest possible quality. And, with a minimum of three productions in a single year, the play attains the momentum it needs to join the repertoire of frequently-produced new American works.

"It's always an exciting venture to participate in a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere, and to play our own role in launching an exciting new play into the American Theatre. And it's doubly exciting to collaborate again with playwright and Denver native Steven Dietz, who with this show now ranks as the most-produced playwright in the history of Curious," says Producing Artistic Director Chip Walton. "At once both hilarious and thoughtful, Rancho Mirage is a great showcase for our artistic company members, as well as a theatre experience for our audiences that you won't find anywhere else in Colorado."

The cast includes Curious Artistic Company Members Bill Hahn*, C. Kelly Leo*, David Russell, Erik Sandvold*, and Karen Slack along with Emily Paton Davies and Devon James.

The creative team includes Curious Artistic Company Members Christopher Leo*, Kevin Brainerd** and Richard Devin as well as Ann Piano, Brian Freeland and Kristin Hamer.

Christopher Leo* (Director) has been a Curious Artistic Company Member since 2003 and has directed Circle Mirror Transformation (Best Theater Production, Westword's Best of Denver, The Denver Post's Best Production of a Comedy Ovation Awards nomination, The Denver Post Best Director Ovation Awards nomination ) End Days (The Denver Post Best Production of a Drama Ovation Awards nomination),the first five seasons of Denver Stories, Arcadia, Red Herring, A Folded Flag, The Ride Down Mt. Morgan, Four Dogs and a Bone, Pig (Back Stage West Garland citation for Direction, Westword's Best of Denver), Betrayal, The Common Pursuit, Leonardo's Last Supper and Noonday Demons. As an actor at Curious he has appeared in Paris on the Platte (The Denver Post Ovation Award nomination), Inventing Van Gogh (Westword's Best of Denver Best Supporting Actor in a Drama award), as The Man in Nickel and Dimed (Out Front Colorado's Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy award) and as Limping Man in Fuddy Meers. He has also appeared in Cyrano de Bergerac (Denver Center Theatre Company), In the Heart of America (Denver Drama Critics' Circle Best Supporting Actor), American Buffalo (Westword's Best of Denver Best Actor award, DDCC Best Actor Nomination), The Elephant Man (DDCC Best Actor nomination), Buried Child, Tartuffe, Marat/Sade, The Homecoming, Hurlyburly and Major Barbara. He attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and has a BA in English Literature from CU-Denver. He is a proud member of the Actors' Equity Association.

Steven Dietz (Playwright) has written thirty-plus plays that have been produced at regional theaters across the United States, as well as Off-Broadway. International productions of his work have been seen in England, Japan, Germany, France, Australia, Sweden, Russia, Slovenia, Argentina, Peru, Greece, Singapore and South Africa. Recent plays include the widely-produced thriller, Yankee Tavern; the Steinberg Award finalist, Becky's New Car; the Pulitzer-nominated Last of the Boys (produced by Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago); and the Edgar Award-winning Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure (from William Gillette and Arthur Conan Doyle). Other plays include Fiction (produced Off-Broadway by Roundabout Theatre Company), Shooting Star, Inventing Van Gogh, The Nina Variations, Private Eyes, Halcyon Days, God's Country and Lonely Planet (PEN-USA Award for Drama). Mr. Dietz's work as a director has been seen at many of America's leading regional theaters. He divides his time between Seattle and Austin, where he is a professor at the University of Texas.

Emily Paton Davies (Pam Caldwell) returns to Curious after appearing in Dead Man's Cell Phone. Emily has performed with theatre companies throughout Colorado for more than a decade. She has received critical acclaim from The Denver Post, Westword, Rocky Mountain News, Out Front Colorado and other publications. Emily received her second Henry Award nomination in 2012 from the Colorado Theatre Guild for Outstanding Actress in a Play for her portrayal of Beth in A Lie of the Mind (Paragon Theatre), she won the 2007 Henry Award in the same category for her work in Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (Paragon Theatre).

Bill Hahn* (Nick Dahner) is an Artistic Company Member at Curious Theatre Company where he appeared as Max in Becky Shaw, Everett K. Olsen in The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity, Gordon in Dead Man's Cell Phone, Dorian in Opus and Ralph in Frozen. Other local roles include James Nagamanee in Escanaba: 1922 (The Aurora Fox Art Center), the doomed physicist Harold in K2 (The Aurora Fox Art Center), Boo Radley in To Kill a Mockingbird (Denver Center Theatre Company) and Mike in A Lie of the Mind (Paragon Theatre). His feature film credits include Looking for Sunday, Skills like This and the title character, Will, in A Test of Wills. Over the past few years he has been the recipient of a Colorado Theatre Guild Henry Award, The Denver Post Ovation Award and Westword's Best of Denver.

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