Photo Flash: First Look at Penguin Rep & Morton Wolkowitz' MIRACLE ON SOUTH DIVISION STREET
Penguin Rep Theatre (Joe Brancato, Artistic Director, and Andrew M. Horn, Executive Director) and Morton Wolkowitz (Stomp, The Unexpected Man) will present the Off-Broadway premiere of Miracle On South Division Street, by Tom Dudzick, directed by Joe Brancato. Opening Night is Sunday May 13th at St. Luke's Theatre (308 West 46th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues). See photos from the production below!
Miracle On South Division Street will feature Peggy Cosgrave (Long Day's Journey Into Night with Helen Hayes), Andrea Maulella (Tryst at Irish Rep, One Shot, One Kill at Primary Stages), Rusty Ross (original Broadway cast of Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, Robert Wilson's Alice at BAM), and Liz Zazzi (Tony N' Tina's Wedding, Bad Attitudes), and have set and lighting design by Josh Iacovelli, costume design by Gail Cooper-Hecht, and sound design by Chris Rummel.
Miracle On South Division Street is a new comedy about family, faith and adjusting to life's surprises. The Nowaks of Buffalo always thought they were special, ever since Clara's father, an immigrant from war-torn Poland, had a miraculous vision in his barbershop. But 65 years later, Clara's youngest daughter has stopped going to mass, her son is dating a Jewish girl, and a deathbed confession causes the family legend to unravel with unexpectedly hilarious results.
Tom Dudzick's first play, Greetings! was produced off-Broadway at the John Houseman Theatre by legendary producer Arthur Cantor. It has since become a holiday favorite at theatres nationwide. His next play, a semi-autobiographical comedy entitled Over the Tavern spawned the OTT Trilogy and has had over 200 productions, breaking box office records across the country. The Irish adaptation, Over the Pub, also broke the box office record at Cork Arts Theatre in Ireland. Tom has written eight plays to date, most published by Playscripts, Inc. He was recently honored with a memorial plaque embedded in front of his boyhood home in Buffalo. An even greater honor - he was once a question on Jeopardy!
Joe Brancato's Off-Broadway credits include The Devil's Music: The Life & Blues of Bessie Smith (2012 Lortel nomination, Outstanding Solo Show); Fall to Earth and Freed at 59E59; Tryst (Outer Critics nomination for Best Play) starring Maxwell Caulfield; Cobb (Drama Desk winner) produced by Kevin Spacey in NYC and LA; From Door To Door at The Westside Theatre; One Shot, One Kill at Primary Stages; Two and a Half Jews; My Italy Story; Ricky Ian Gordon's The Matter of Minutes; Escape from Happiness (starring Marsha Mason), The Big Swing (starring Madeline Kahn, Sarah Jessica Parker, Matthew Broderick, Marisa Tomei) and Dr. Valentine's Waltz (starring John Turturro, Laura Linney, Gina Gershon, Jane Alexander) at Naked Angels; Hold the Wedding, produced by Joseph Papp. Regional credits: Seven Angels Theatre (Miracle on South Division Street), George Street Playhouse, Seattle Rep, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Houston's Alley Theatre (Sylvia, Stones in His Pockets, Mere Mortals, Tryst) The Hartford Stage Company, Westport Playhouse, Capital Rep, Boston's New Rep, Hartford Theatreworks, The Cape Playhouse and Florida Stage. As founding artistic director of Penguin Rep he has directed well over 100 productions there including Joel Drake Johnson's The Fall To Earth starring Michele Pawk. He commissioned and originally directed the play The Man Who Was Peter Pan, which is the basis for the Oscar-nominated film Finding Neverland starring Johnny Depp. As playwright, he has written the comedy Drop Dead Perfect and the book for the musical Mae West at the Club El Fey. Joe recently received a second Rockland County Executive Award for artistic excellence.
In 1977, an empty century-old barn in Stony Point, New York, became a repository of dreams as the home of Rockland County's first year-round non-profit professional theatre - Penguin Rep Theatre. In the more than three decades that have followed, Penguin Rep founder and Artistic Director Joe Brancato and Executive Director Andrew M. Horn have produced nearly 150 acclaimed productions and brought outstanding professional actors and playwrights together, including such acclaimed artists as Celeste Holm, Andrew McCarthy, Joy Behar, Robert Klein, Beth Fowler, Gregg Edelman, Karen Ziemba, Richard Kline, Tovah Feldshuh, and David Canary, and such accomplished writers as Warren Leight, Arthur Laurents, Elizabeth Swados, Lanie Robertson, William Mastrosimone, Tom Dudzick and Angelo Parra. Over the years, Penguin Rep, dubbed "the gutsiest little theatre" by The New York Times, has not only introduced new work but has seen them move to New York City, across the country, and around the world. The Man Who Was Peter Pan by Allan Knee, a play commissioned and originally produced by Penguin Rep, was the basis for Finding Neverland, the film starring Johnny Depp. James Sherman's From Door to Door ran Off-Broadway at The Westside Theatre. Lee Blessing's Cobb was produced by actor Kevin Spacey Off-Broadway and by Mr. Spacey and producer/director Garry Marshall in LA. Richard Vetere's One Shot, One Kill played at Primary Stages. And Tony Award winner Warren Leight's Glimmer, Glimmer and Shine was seen at the Manhattan Theatre Club and at the Mark Taper Forum (LA).
The playing schedule for Miracle On South Division Street is Tuesday evening at 7pm, Wednesday at 2pm & 8pm, and Sunday matinees at 2pm. St. Luke's Theatre is located at 308 West 46th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues. Tickets from $36.50 are available at Telecharge.com or by calling 212/239-6200.
Photo credit: Aaron Pepis