THE CORRESPONDENT, With Thomas Jay Ryan, Begins Performances Tonight at Rattlestick

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THE CORRESPONDENT, With Thomas Jay Ryan, Begins Performances Tonight at Rattlestick

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater's Artistic Director David Van Asselt and Managing Director Brian Long have announced that Ken Urban's The Correspondent, directed by Stephen Brackett will begin previews tonight, January 29, 2014, at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, 224 Waverly Place, west of Seventh Avenue South, between West 11th and Perry Streets. The official opening night is set for Thursday, February 13, 2014. The Correspondent is scheduled to run through Sunday, March 16.

In The Correspondent a grieving husband hires a dying woman to deliver a message to his recently deceased wife in the afterlife. When he receives letters describing events that only his wife could know, he must determine if the correspondence is from a con artist or actually from the beyond.

The cast of The Correspondent is Jordan Geiger, Thomas Jay Ryan, and Heather Alicia Simms.

Ken Urban has been produced and developed at Summer Play Festival at The Public, Donmar Warehouse (London), TimeLine Theatre Company, Epic Theatre Ensemble, Studio 42, Theatre @ Boston Court, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Playwrights Horizons, Irish Rep, Primary Stages, kef productions, Stable Cable, and The Huntington. The Awake opened at 59E59 Theatres this past August, starring Maulik Pancholy from "Weeds" and "30 Rock". The New York Times named the show a Critic's Pick and it played for a sold out run. Awards include the Weissberger Playwriting Award, Huntington Theater Playwriting Fellowship, Djerassi Artist Residency, Dramatist Guild Fellowship, and MacDowell Colony Fellowships, and he is a company member of Rising Phoenix Rep. The feature film adaptation of his play The Happy Sad, with a screenplay by the author, directed by Rodney Evans, premiered at Frameline and OutFest last summer. The film screened at fifteen film festivals both in the US and internationally, with theatrical releases in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Ann Arbor. In early 2014, the film will be available on iTunes and DVD. He also wrote a short film I Am A Big Ball of Sadness (And I Want to Throw Myself from Your Roof), which screened as part of the Manhattan Short Film Festival in over 200 venues across six continents, and was awarded the Bronze Award by the audience. His plays are published by Dramatists Play Service. He plays in the band Occurrence and their new album DECKS was released this year. Their releases are available from Insound and Bandcamp.

Stephen Brackett's New York credits include Jonathan Tolins' Buyer & Cellar (Barrow Street and Rattlestick Theaters), Dan Fishback's The Material World (Dixon Place), Micheline Auger's American River (Lesser America), Bekah Brunstetter's Nothing is the End of the World (Except for the End of the World) (Waterfall), Chad Beckim's After (Partial Comfort), Brunstetter's Be a Good Little Widow (Ars Nova), The Tenant (Woodshed Collective), David Mixner's From the Front Porch (Dixon Place), Nick Jones and Rachel Shukert's The Sporting Life (Studio 42), and Bixby Elliot's PN1923.45 LS01 Volume 2 (Culture Project). Regional credits include The Trouble With Doug (TheatreWorks) and Kilroy Was Here; A Styx Rock Opera (Williamstown). Stephen is a company member of Lesser America and Partial Comfort, and an alumnus of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab.

The set design for The Correspondent is by Andrew Boyce; costume design is by Jessica Pabst; lighting design is by Eric Southern; sound design is by Daniel Kluger. The production manager is Eugenia Furneaux; the production stage manager is John Crotty.

Thomas Jay Ryan (Philip Graves) received a Drama Desk Award for Jon Maran?s The Temperamentals, and appeared on Broadway in Sarah Ruhl?s In the Next Room or The Vibrator Play. He is perhaps most known for the title role in Hal Hartley?s Henry Fool, a role which he reprised in that film?s sequel Fay Grim and in the upcoming finale to the series Ned Rifle (to be released in 2014). Other New York theater credits include Ivo van Hove?s productions of The Litte Foxes and The Misanthrope at the New York Theater Workshop, Edward Albee?s revival of The Lady From Dubuque at the Signature, the American premiere of Harold Pinter?s Celebration

at the Atlantic, Juno and The Paycock at the Roundabout, Suzan-Lori Parks? Venus at the Public, and the title role in In the Matter of J. Robert Oppenheimmer with Keen Company. He has been seen at many of America?s leading regional theaters, most recently in Lucas Hnath?s new play Red Speedo at the Studio Theater in Washington. Other films include Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Legend of Bagger Vance, The Book of Life, Sabbatical, Teknolust

and Strange Culture. Television credits include "Nurse Jackie", "Elementary", "Wonderland", "An American Impressionist" and the role of Edgar Degas in H.B.O.?s "Degas and the Dancer" (for which he was nominated for a Gemini Award).

Heather Alicia Simms's (Mirabel) past credits include Broadway: Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, A Raisin In The Sun, and Gem of the Ocean. Off-Broadway: born bad (Soho Rep), The Brother/Sister Plays (The Public), The Exonerated (National Tour), Insurrection: Holding History (The Public), and Breath, Boom (Playwright's Horizons). Her regional credits include productions at Berkeley Rep, The McCarter, The Kennedy Center, The O'Neill, The Denver Center, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Missouri Repertory Theatre, Stamford TheatreWorks, and NY Stage and Film. Her television credits include: "The Good Wife", "Life Support", "Law and Order", "Law and Order: CI", "Whoopi", "Third Watch", and "Homicide: Life on the Street". Her film credits include Spike Lee's Red Hook Summer, Jim Jarmusch's Broken Flowers, The Nanny Diaries, You Belong to Me, Head of State, and Stream with Whoopi Goldberg. Heather is also an accomplished voice-over artist and winner of an Audie Award for the audiobook Upstate. Heather received her BA from Tufts University in History and English, as well as her MFA from Columbia University. Heather is the recipient of a Fox Foundation Resident Actor Fellowship through Theater Communications Group.

Jordan Geiger (Young Man) Off-Broadway includes Peter and The Starcatcher (New World Stages) and The Best of Everything (Here Arts). A Denver native, Jordan studied at Juilliard.

The Correspondent plays Monday and Wednesday at 7pm, Thursday and Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 3pm and 8pm, and Sunday at 3pm at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, 224 Waverly Place, west of Seventh Avenue South, between West 11 and Perry Streets. Tickets may be purchased at www.rattlestick.org or by phoning OvationTix at 866.811.4111. Individual tickets are $55; student tickets are $10; under-30 tickets are $15. For more information about The Correspondent and Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, visit www.rattlestick.org.

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