Asolo Rep's Unplugged New Play Festival Kicks Off 3/23

Asolo Rep's Unplugged New Play Festival Kicks Off 3/23

Be among the first to hear the innovative new plays penned by today's freshest playwrights. Beginning Sunday, March 23 and continuing each consecutive Sunday through April 13, Asolo Rep will present its fifth annual Unplugged play festival. The 2014 festival will feature four specially selected new plays. All four performances will begin at 7pm in Asolo Rep's rehearsal hall, located at 5555 N. Tamiami Trail, in Sarasota. Festival passes are $21 and include admission to all four plays. Tickets for each individual reading are $7. Festival passes and tickets are available by visiting Asolo Rep's Box Office, located in the lobby of the theatre, or by calling the box office at 941.351.8000 or 800.361.8388, or online at www.asolorep.org.

Unplugged allows theater enthusiasts to experience brand new plays in their most organic form, stripped of costumes, sets and special effects. Instead, Asolo Rep company members and select guest artists will perform the new plays with scripts in hand - providing patrons with the opportunity to focus solely on the playwright's story and words. Many of the plays are read aloud for the first time in the rehearsal room, allowing the playwright to revamp his/her piece based on the performance, the director's notes and, finally, audience reaction.

"Unplugged provides an extraordinary platform for today's up-and-coming playwrights - a chance to have their new voices, ideas and plays heard for the very first time. It exposes this theatre and the Sarasota community to innovative, thrilling plays and artists, and inspires Asolo Rep to explore and embrace the most cutting-edge theatrical works," said Producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards.

"We're eager to present four exciting pieces from these incredibly talented playwrights," said Asolo Rep Literary Manager/Dramaturg, Lauryn Sasso, who is curating this year's festival. "These politically stimulating, heartwarming and poignant plays resonate with the themes of Asolo Rep's ongoing American Character Project. Our audiences will really experience something special during the festival."

Unplugged is sponsored by the Herald-Tribune Media Group and Holiday Inn Sarasota Airport. The 2014 Unplugged Season:

March 23 at 7pm
BAD DOG
By Jennifer Hoppe-House
Directed By Jeremy Cohen (Producing Artistic Director of The Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, MN.)

A family drama with bite
After ten years clean and sober, Molly Drexler tumbles off "the wagon" and crashes her Prius through the side of her house. As the events of Molly's blackout (and the ghosts that chase her) emerge, her family members try to cope with her wreckage, but end up running headlong into their own.

March 30 at 7pm
ASSISTED LOVING
By Bob Morris
Directed By Gordon Greenberg (Asolo Rep's Working, A Musical and Barnum, both 2008 and Yentl, 2012)

True tales of double dating with your dad
What would you do if your 75 year old father dragged you into his hell-bent hunt for new love? New York Times style writer Bob Morris, a chronically single son, shows us how it happened in this warm, witty, and wacky comedy about a year of dating dangerously.

April 6 at 7pm
GODDESS OF MERCY
By Jenny Connell Davis
Directed by Mark Rucker (Associate Artistic Director at A.C.T. in San Francisco, and director of Asolo Rep's The Constant Wife, 2008; Managing Maxine, 2010; and Once in a Lifetime, 2012)

When the personal and political collide
Kate and Mike struggle to hold it together as they try to juggle their relationship and his transcontinental commute. When Mike's sister Brianna, just back from the Peace Corps and crashing on their couch, finds out Mike's oil company is sending him to hush up trouble in the same part of Asia she just left, their opposing views provoke an international incident.

April 13 at 7pm
ASK/TELL
By David Bar Katz
Directed by Jeff Calhoun (Asolo Rep's Bonnie & Clyde, 2010; Noah Racey's Pulse, 2013)

A quest to know and voice the truth
Set immediately after the repeal of Don't Ask/Don't Tell, and delving into the mysterious death of a soldier who had recently come out, Ask/Tell explores the hypocrisies - both spoken and unspoken - that accompany intense intimacy between men in a war zone.

Unplugged Festival plays contain mature content and language.

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