BOOK OF LIZ Returns to Custom Made Theatre, Now thru 8/2
Custom Made is thrilled to bring back The Book of Liz for a fourth hysterical run, after setting box office records in 2009, 2011, and 2013. This year, James Nelson brings his directorial eye to the popular "LizFest."
Elizabeth Donderstock makes delicious cheeseballs. Both original and smoky, mind you. Everyone loves the cheeseballs - in fact, they are all that the religious community of Clusterhaven has left. But when Liz isn't appreciated any more, she decides to try the outside world. There she'll meet Ukrainians with cockney accents, restaurants run by recovering alcoholics, a certain peanut, and her own self-worth.
But will the cheeseballs ever taste the same again?
This hilarious comedy could only emerge from the twisted minds of David (Me Talk Pretty One Day) and Amy (Strangers with Candy) Sedaris!
Directed by the equally twisted James Nelson.
The Book of Liz stars a host of Custom Made regulars, including Stefin Collins, AJ Davenport, Justin Gillman, and Teri Whipple.
Design by Maxx Kurzunski and Scarlett Kellun
LIZ is a CMTC special event (not part of the 2013-14 season) so Current Subscribers get $5 off each ticket.
Buy single tickets for LIZ at http://www.custommade.org/tickets
James Nelson (Director) is an actor, director, and playwright originally from Kansas City, MO. He graduated from the University of Missouri, Kansas City, with a degree in theater and now resides in Berkeley.
In 2009, James moved to Tübingen, Germany, where he assumed the role of artistic director for the Anglo-Irish Theater Group, a group with a rich 30-year history in the town. Under the group, James produced and directed six full-length plays, ranging from a beautifully stylistic rendition of Brian Friel's Translations, to an action-packed and over-the-top Romeo and Juliet, to a minimal but intense Equus, all of which played to sold-out houses.
Since arriving in the Bay Area, James has primarily pursued directing work, and has worked with the California Shakespeare Theatre, Ross Valley Players, Dragon Productions, San Francisco Theatre Pub, The San Francisco Olympians Festival, Subterranean Shakespeare, and Masquers Playhouse. He works at Theatre Bay Area as a field services associate.
Bay Area directing stints include Stephen Dietzs's Becky's New Car at Dragon Productions and Neil Simon's Chapter Two at Ross Valley Players. He will be directing Sarah Ruhl's Dead Man's Cell Phone later this year at Masquers Playhouse.
Amy Sedaris (Co-Playwright, with her brother David Sedaris, who needs no introduction, but we added one anyway. It's below.) Amy's book, Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People! (2010), includes a cover which can be easily made into a hat, as demonstrated, and worn, by David Letterman during her appearance on his Late Showin October 2010. Along with her brother David, Amy has co-authored several plays under the name "The Talent Family": Stump the Host (1993), Stitches (1994), One Woman Shoe (1995), Incident at Cobblers Knob (1997) and The Little Frieda Mysteries. She also co-authored the play The Book of Liz with him. Her theater work includes a role as the stage manager in Paul Rudnick's play The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told. In support of PETA's anti-fur campaign, Sedaris appeared as her "Strangers with Candy" character in an ad that read, "When you wear fur, people laugh at you, not with you." In addition to acting and writing, she runs a cupcake and cheese ball business, Dusty Food Cupcakes, out of her home kitchen.
David Sedaris (Co-Playwright). Sedaris first gained prominence in 1994 with his book of stories and essays titled Barrel Fever. Sedaris became a frequent contributor when Ira Glass began a weekly hour-long PRI/Chicago Public Radio show, This American Life, in 1995. Sedaris began writing essays for Esquire and The New Yorker. In 1997, he published another collection of essays, Naked, which won the Randy Shilts Award for Gay Non-Fiction from Publishing Triangle in 1998.
His next book, Me Talk Pretty One Day, was written mostly in France over seven months and was published in 2000 to "practically unanimous rave reviews". In 2004, Sedaris published Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, which reached number 1 on The New York Times nonfiction best seller list. Sedaris released Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary, a collection of fables "detailing animals in strange adult situations, in 2008. In 2013, Sedaris' ninth book Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls was released.
Sedaris is also a playwright, having written with his sister, actress Amy Sedaris, several plays under the name "The Talent Family". All were produced at La MaMa, E.T.C. The Book of Liz was first produced in 2002. The Sedarises' Incident at Cobbler's Knob was presented and produced at the Lincoln Center Festival. Sets for those performances were designed by Sedaris's longtime partner, Hugh Hamrick, who also directed two of them, The Book of Liz and Incident at Cobbler's Knob. Sedaris and his sister Amy shared "The Talent Family" credit on the latter's sketch comedy show Exit 57 while David was a contributing writer.