Washington Ensemble Theatre's 2017/18 Season is "No Surprise"

Washington Ensemble Theatre's 2017/18 Season is “No Surprise”

Washington Ensemble Theatre has announced a striking three-play lineup for its 2017/18 season, which includes an irreverent tale about the hacktivist group Anonymous, a rolicking family drama about the demographic you love to hate, and a dark and stormy examination of the science fiction future of intimacy. The season, which marks The Ensemble's 14th year as a producing theatre company in Seattle, is themed "No Surprise" and will look at toxic masculinity under a microscope.

"This season we will acknowledge and dismantle the pervasive power of the patriarchy and the dark and uncertain future we have created for ourselves" said Artistic Director Samie Spring Detzer. "I am tired, as many of us are, of not acknowledging the evil men do. I feel a strong need to place myself, our company, and the artists we work with squarely in the middle of this conversation. We know we are not the first, last, or the only ones to feel this way. It is no surprise, because there are no surprises left."

The Ensemble will open its season with the dark and captivating Teh Internet is Serious Business. Forward slash forward slash, angle bracket, quotation, command, dialogue, angle bracket, semicolon: it's 2004, the year hacktivist group Anonymous emerged as a can't-be-tamed digital authority with unexpected influence online and in the "real world." This mercurial and irreverent tale by British playwright Tim Price follows the network's pointed take down of the Church of Scientology and ponders the revolution of online global power. Celebrated Seattle director Wayne Rawley will direct the West Coast premiere of Teh Internet is Serious Business, which was called "liberating" and "enlightening" by The Guardian. Can you feel the lulz?

In January 2018, The Ensemble will stage the Northwest premiere of Straight White Men. In her critically acclaimed family drama, Young Jean Lee tackles the demographic you love to hate. When three brothers gather at their father's home for Christmas, it becomes clear that they have more on their minds than the holidays. With hypocrisy, humor, and enlightened progressivism, this story explores what to do with privilege and who is to blame for it. The New York Times called Straight White Men "a compassionate and stimulating exploration of one man's existential crisis." Sara Porkalob, the 2017 Intiman Theatre Festival co-curator, will direct.

The final show of Season 14 is the Seattle premiere of The Nether. With direction by Bobbin Ramsey, The Ensemble's Lead Producer (The Things Are Against Us and Revolt. She said. Revolt again.), The Nether asks: What happens when you let your desire and darkest secrets run wild? Detective Morris must investigate and expose an interactive playground world where unforgivable sexual fantasies are enjoyed by men who feel they can't live without them. Jennifer Haley's unsettling play tackles both the seductive pull of the morally ambiguous virtual world and the science fiction future of intimacy. Called "as smart as it is unsettling" by The New York Times, The Nether will have you squirming in your seat.

In addition to its three-play mainstage lineup produced at 12th Avenue Arts, where it begins its fourth year as a resident company, The Ensemble will stage Monstrosity in partnership with the University of Washington. The Ensemble's Artistic Director Samie Spring Detzer will direct Lucy Thurber's fantasy thriller about the complexity of the power-hungry political system that features singing teenage revolutionaries, battle cries, and a badass female protagonist. It will be performed in the Glenn Hughes Penthouse Theater at the University of Washington in December 2017.

The Ensemble will also continue its ever-popular Six Pack Series, a literary event that invites Seattle-based writers, poets, playwrights, and performers to showcase work based on a curated theme, all with a beer in-hand.

2017/18 Season Sponsors

Washington Ensemble Theatre thanks 4Culture and Seattle Office of Arts & Culture for their continued support, media sponsor The Stranger, and restaurant sponsor Omega Ouzeri.

About Washington Ensemble Theatre

Through collaborative artistic leadership, Washington Ensemble Theatre fearlessly creates audacious stories for adventurous Seattle audiences. A resident company at 12th Avenue Arts in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood, The Ensemble is committed to maintaining an environment wherein its members, as well as artists from the community, are challenged to grow through its work as an ensemble. For more information about The Ensemble, please visit washingtonensemble.org.

The 2017/2018 Ensemble is Samie Spring Detzer, Jeffrey Azevedo, Maria Manness, Rachel Liuzzi, Bobbin Ramsey, Tristan Roberson, Karla Davenport, Joceline Wynn, Jenn Oaster, Ryan Dunn, Erika Bailey, and Maggie Rogers.

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