Pioneer Theatre Company Announces New PLAY-BY-PLAY Reading Series
Pioneer Theatre Company Artistic Director Karen Azenberg and Managing Director Chris Lino announce a new play reading series for the University of Utah-based professional theatre company in Salt Lake City. Titled "Play-by-Play," the series will provide developmental rehearsal periods for three new plays in early 2014, with the playwright working alongside a professional director and cast for a week-long residency, culminating in three public readings of each play available to theatregoers at a very modest cost.
The three plays announced for the 2014 readings are:
"True Art" by Jessica Provenz, which will have its public readings on Friday, February 28 at 8:00 and Saturday, March 1 at 2:00 and 8:00 pm in the Babcock Theatre in the lower level of Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre.
"A Public Education" by Jeff Talbott, which will have its public readings on Friday, March 14 at 8:00 pm and Saturday, March 15 at 2:00 and 8:00 pm in the Babcock Theatre.
"Alabama Story" by Kenneth Jones, which will have its public readings on Friday, April 4 at 8:00 pm and Saturday, April 5 at 2:00 and 8:00 pm in the Dumke Auditorium of the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.
"Nothing is more important to the long-term vitality of American theatre as an art form than the nurturing of new voices and new work," said PTC Artistic Director Karen Azenberg. "I couldn't be more pleased to announce Pioneer Theatre Company's commitment to developing three new plays this coming year. In each case, we will fly the playwright to Salt Lake City to work with a director of his/her choice and a cast of actors drawing from our resident pool of talent and beyond. The week-long residency will allow the playwrights to experience their plays in rehearsal, to refine and improve their writing in the room, and to hear an audience's response - prompting the writers to further assess the intentions and impact of their work. I think it's also vitally important to experience these plays in an intimate setting - rather than on our expansive mainstage - where the actors and audience are very close to each other, allowing a focus on, as Hamlet said, the 'words, words, words.'
"In order to further focus on the script and keep costs down, the readings will be performed without a set or costumes." Azenberg explained, "These are bare-bones developmental presentations allowing the PTC audience a 'first look' at new works in progress. Theatre-going should always prompt conversation, and we're certain that this inaugural season of Play-by-Play readings and talkbacks will help lead to better plays that will find a wider stage in American theatre and more engaged playgoers here in Salt Lake City."
Adds PTC Managing Director Chris Lino, "Some of the most wonderful experiences in the theatre come when you walk into a theatre and see a new play you know nothing about, and it just takes your breath away. The excitement of that experience can be absolutely electrifying, but there is also an element of risk, because you know so little about the play you're going to see. Everyone knows what they're getting when they buy a ticket to 'LES MISERABLES,' but a new play is, by its nature, a complete unknown.
"We want to make it easy for people who love theatre to take that leap of faith to see new work by making these new play readings very affordable. By doing them as readings, with no sets or costumes, we can invite our audience to take a risk with us at a very modest cost-roughly the cost of a movie ticket," Lino said.
Current PTC season ticket holders may purchase tickets to the readings for $5.00 per ticket. Non-season ticket holders may purchase tickets to individual readings for $10.00 or may purchase all three readings in advance at the same time for $25.00. All tickets are general admission.
A pass for all three readings may also be purchased; that pass must be purchased by calling the PTC Box Office at 801-581-6961.