Busboys and Poets Present Second Run of THE ADMISSION at Studio Theatre, Now thru 5/18
Motti Lerner's acclaimed but controversial play, The Admission, just finished a short, sold-out run at Theater J and will be remounted in workshop form by Busboys and Poets. The show will transfer to Studio Theatre's Mead Theater for a three-week commercial engagement starting April 30 through May 18, 2014.
Lerner's play focuses on Giora, a wounded veteran of a military action in Lebanon, who tries to discover the circumstances surrounding the murder of a group of Palestinian villagers by a unit commanded by his father 40 years earlier during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. This Israeli homage to Arthur Miller's All My Sons is set in Haifa during the first Intifada.
The play's topic prompted protests from a local ad hoc group, leading to a curtailed workshop production at Theater J. The play and the production were acclaimed, with Peter Marks writing in The Washington Post, "spellbinding...wrenching...wonderful unsparing clarity... I could go on, because The Admission is one of those plays you obsess about for hours after the lights come up." DC Metro Theater Arts awarded the production five stars, saying, "...a towering achievement...The Admission ranks among dramatic-literature classics-and the exceptional ensemble of actors play each perspective and each point pitch perfectly."
Andy Shallal, artist, activist, recent candidate for the Democratic nomination for mayor and founder of Busboys and Poets will produce the remount as the first theatrical venture for the popular restaurant and meeting place. Busboys and Poets is renting Studio Theatre's Mead Theatre so that The Admission can run for 22 performances from April 30 through May 18. The remounted "workshop" production will feature virtually the entire cast from Theater J's workshop production including Michael Tolaydo and Danny Gavigan as the Israeli father and son, ex-soldiers at odds over the son's suspicions of a dark event in Israel's past.
Tel Aviv native Peter Sinai directs the workshop presentation. Sinai has directed productions at Haifa Municipal Theater, the Chan Theater of Jerusalem, the Municipal Theater of Tel Aviv and Theater J, and has taught drama at the Seminar Kibbutzim's School of Performing Arts in Tel Aviv since 1990. The bare-bones minimalist designs from members of the Israeli creative team (Fridah Shoham, set and costume designer; Habib Shehadeh, composer) supports the staging of the workshop presentation.
The multi-national cast includes returning Associate Artist in Residence, Michael Tolaydo (veteran of many Theater J productions, including Lerner's Pangs of the Messiah); Lebanese-American actress and playwright Leila Buck (who appeared In The Crossing at Theater J in 2007); Kimberly Schraf (American premiere of Mikveh); and Elizabeth Jernigan (Motti Lerner's Passing The Love of Women in 2004, and After the Revolution earlier this season). Making their Theater J debuts with this production are Seattle-based Palestinian-American actor, author and producer Hanna Eady, Danny Gavigan (Woolly Mammoth's Detroit) and Joel Reuben Ganz (Measure for Pleasure at Woolly Mammoth and The Lisbon Traviata at Kennedy Center). In addition, acclaimed DC actress Jennifer Mendenhall (company member at Woolly Mammoth and Associate Artist in Residence at Theater J) will take over the roll of Yona beginning May 7 while Nora Achrati will open the run of the show as Samya until Leila Buck resumes the role on May 7.
Busboys and Poets is a restaurant, bookstore and gathering place where people can discuss issues of social justice and peace.
THE ADMISSION, written by Motti Lerner and directed by Sinai Peter includes a creative team featuring: SCENIC/COSTUME DESIGNER: Frida Shoham; LIGHTING DESIGNER: Klyph Stanford; COMPOSER: Habib Hanna; and PROPS DESIGNER: Michelle Elwyn.
Press night is set for Friday, May 2, and the production runs through May 18, 2014, playing Wed/Thurs/Fri/Sat/Sun at 7:30pm and Sat/Sun at 3pm. Additional performance Tuesday, May 13 at 7:30pm. Tickets: $35, students -$25, available online at theadmission.bpt.me. Seating is general admission. There are no assigned seats. Studio Theatre's Mead Theatre is located at 1501 14th Street, Washington DC 20005.