Labyrinth Theater Company Announces 2014-2015 Season
Labyrinth Theater Company (Artistic Director Mimi O'Donnell, Managing Director Danny Feldman), the award-winning, downtown ensemble, today announced its 2014-2015 season, including A Sucker Emcee, written and performed by Craig muMs Grant, The Insurgents, a new play by Lucy Thurber, and Nice Girl, written by Melissa Ross. All work will be presented at the Bank Street Theater (155 Bank Street), Labyrinth Theater Company's home in New York City's West Village.
Opening the 2014-15 season in September is A Sucker Emcee, written and performed by Craig muMs Grant, and directed by Jenny Koons. Infused with hip-hop, slam poetry and personal recollections, this one-man show charts the ups and downs of muMs' incredible journey, from growing up in the Bronx to starring on one of HBO's biggest shows. A life set against the backdrop of the birth of hip-hop, this is the story of man looking for his spotlight and finding it in the most unlikely of places.
An explosive new play by Obie Award-winning playwright Lucy Thurber, and directed by Lear deBessonet, The Insurgents, will kick-off in early 2015. The play follows Sally Wright, an American wanderer, who has traveled across the country searching for something to believe in, only to find herself home again. Inspired by the lives of some of the most dynamic and controversial figures in American history, The Insurgents examines the lies and injustice that history has handed down to us and the actions people take when they finally decide that enough is enough.
Nice Girl, written by Melissa Ross (Thinner Than Water) and directed by Labyrinth Theater Company's Artistic Director Mimi O'Donnell, will play in the spring. In suburban Massachusetts in 1984, thirty seven year old Josephine Rosen has a dead end job, still lives with her mother, and has settled into the uncomfortable comfort of an unintended spinsterhood. But when a chance flirtation with an old classmate and a new friendship at work give her hope for the possibility of change, she dusts off the Jane Fonda tapes, and begins to take tentative steps towards a new life. A play about the tragedy and joy of figuring out who you are and letting go of who you were supposed to be.
Labyrinth will also continue their Annual Barn Series, a reading festival of new plays. More details will be available soon.
CRAIG muMs GRANT (Playwright) is an American Poet, Actor and Playwright. He has performed on New York City stages for more than 20 years. muMs is best known for playing Arnold Jackson aka Poet on the HBO hit show "OZ." At the same time, muMs is an internationally known poet performing at over 200 cafes, colleges and universities across the U.S., Europe, and Africa. muMs is a proud member of the Labyrinth Theater Company, debuting in such productions as the critically acclaimed Last Days Of Judas Iscariot and A View From 151st. Both performed Off-Broadway at the NYC's Public Theater. With Labyrinth, muMs has also workshopped his own plays, Paradox of The Urban Cliche and Loveness: I will only love you once, and A Sucker Emcee. Some of muMs' acting credits include: Side Effects, "Law and Order SVU," "Law and Order," "Cold Case," "Chappelle's Show," "Boston Legal," "Law and Order Criminal Intent," "The Sopranos," "Dark Water," "Everyday People," Bamboozled, amongst others.
JENNY KOONS (Director). Her work has been seen in diverse venues, including the Diamond Horseshoe Nightclub, Labyrinth Theater Company, Dixon Place, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York, Verkstedhallen (Trondheim, Norway), Dramatikkens Hus (Oslo, Norway), and The Invisible Dog Art Center. Most recently, she was the associate and resident director of Queen Of The Night at the Diamond Horseshoe (named by New York Magazine as the city's "hottest nightclub event"). In 2012, her twelve-part site-specific piece, The Odyssey Project received residency at The Invisible Dog Art Center and explored spaces across five boroughs, from Brighton Beach to secret Chinatown tunnels, from the Staten Island Ferry to Marcus Garvey Park.
LUCY THURBER (Playwright) is the author of ten plays: Where We're Born, Ashville, Scarcity, Killers and Other Family, Stay, Bottom of The World, Monstrosity, Dillingham City, The Locus and The Insurgents. Her five play cycle The Hill Town Plays was produced Off-Broadway by Rattlestick Playwright's Theater in-conjunction with The Cherry Lane Theater, The Axis Theater, and The New Ohio Theatre. The Insurgents was produced at the 2011 Contemporary American Theatre Festival. Produced at The Atlantic Theater Company, Bottom of The World and Scarcity. Rattlestick Playwrights Theater has produced three of her plays, Where We're Born, Killers and Other Family, and Stay. Lucy wrote the text for Quixote, conceived and directed by Lear deBessonet, a site-specific performance with the Psalters made for and with The Broad Street Community, also with Lear deBessonet and produced by 13P, Monstrosity. She was a guest artist at Alaska's Perseverance Theatre twice, where she helped to adapt both Desire Under The Elms and Moby Dick. She has had reading and workshops at Steam Boat Springs, Manhattan Theatre Club, The New Group, Primary Stages, MCC Theater, Encore Theatre Company, PlayPenn, Williamstown Theatre Festival, The O'Neill with WET, New River Dramatists, Soho Rep and The Orchard Project. Scarcity was published in the December 2007 issue of American Theatre. She is published by Dramatists Play Service. Thurber is an alumni of New Dramatists, A member of 13P, Labyrinth Theater Company and Rising Phoenix Rep. She has been commissioned by Playwrights Horizons, The Contemporary American Theatre Festival, House on The Moon and Yale Rep. She is the recipient of Manhattan Theatre Club Playwriting Fellowship, the 1st Gary Bonasorte Memorial Prize for Playwrighting, a proud recipient of a Lilly Award and a 2014 OBIE Award for The Hill Town Plays.
LEAR deBESSONET (Director) is the Director of Public Works at the Public Theater. She directed Good Person of Szechwan for The Foundry Theatre and the Public Theater (Obie Award, Lilly Award, Lortel 'Best Revival', Drama Desk nomination), and directed Public Works' inaugural production of The Tempest at the Delacorte (featuring over two hundred New Yorkers from all five boroughs). She has directed shows for Lincoln Center Theatre, the Old Globe, the Intiman, the Guthrie, Joe's Pub, Women's Project, Ten Thousand Things, Performance Space 122, 13p, and Clubbed Thumb.
MELISSA ROSS (Playwright). Plays include Thinner Than Water, You Are Here, Do Something Pretty, The Allies, and Nice Girl. Thinner Than Water was originally produced by Labyrinth Theater Company and is included in the anthology "New Playwrights: Best Plays of 2011" by Smith and Kraus. It received its Chicago premiere spring 2014 at The Gift Theatre. Melissa has had readings and workshops with The Amoralists, The Cherry Lane Theater, Dorset Theater Festival, The Juilliard School, Labyrinth Theater Company, LCT3, Manhattan Theater Club, Montana Rep, New York Stage and Film, The New Group, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, and The Pacific Playwrights Festival. Her play, Of Good Stock, will receive its world premiere at South Coast Repertory in 2015. Melissa is a graduate of Bennington College, was a Lila Acheson Wallace Playwriting Fellow at The Juilliard School, and is a two-time recipient of the Le Comte Du Nouy Award. She is a proud member of the Dorothy Strelsin New American Writers Group at Primary Stages and Labyrinth Theater Company.
MIMI O'DONNELL is the Artistic Director at Labyrinth Theater Company, where she directed the World Premiere of Thinner Than Water, as well as a number of workshops and readings. As a producer with the Company, she was nominated for a Tony Award for the Broadway production of The Motherf**ker with the Hat and curated the annual Barn Series of new plays in development. Her acclaimed career as a Costume Designer includes many Labyrinth productions, including The Motherf**ker With The Hat, Jack Goes Boating, The Little Flower of East Orange, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, and the Off-Broadway, West End, and Donmar Warehouse productions of Jesus Hopped The A Train. Other notable productions include Modern Terrorism (Second Stage), Rapture, Blister, Burn (Playwrights Horizons), and The Blue Deep (Williamstown Theater Festival). Her film and TV credits include Jack Goes Boating, Jonathan Demme pilot "A Gifted Man," (directed by Jonathan Demme), and four seasons as an assistant designer on Saturday Night Live.
LABYRINTH THEATER COMPANY (Mimi O'Donnell, Artistic Director; Danny Feldman, Managing Director) is a diverse, award-winning ensemble of artists who have changed the face of American theater through groundbreaking productions of provocative new plays. Founded in 1992 by a group of actors who wanted to push their artistic limits and tell new, more inclusive stories that expanded the boundaries of mainstream theater, Labyrinth has grown into a nationally renowned company of actors, directors, playwrights and designers from a wide array of cultural perspectives. Over the past 20 years, Labyrinth has developed hundreds of original works and premiered over 60 new American plays here in New York including Guinea Pig Solo, Jack Goes Boating, Jesus Hopped The A Train, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Our Lady of 121st Street, Sailor's Song, Sistah Supreme, and the Company's multi-Tony nominated Broadway debut, The Motherf**ker With The Hat.