6th Annual newTACTics NEW PLAY FESTIVAL Begins Next Week
TACT kicks off its 2016 - '17 season with its 6th annual newTACTics New Play Festival (Owen Thompson and Yetti Steinman, Producers, with Lauren Miller, newTACTics advisor), a fresh collection of four unpredictable and engaging new works. The original plays at newTACTics always invite you to expect the unexpected, and this year's offerings are no exception.
You may find yourself in a room with four antagonists locked in a twist-filled struggle over a fateful election-eve shooting in crime-ridden Chicago. Or inside the mind of a young man struggling to shoulder the burden of taking care of an ailing parent. Perhaps you will accompany a Hollywood actress on a journey to a home she only thinks she knows. Or maybe you will laugh and cry along with a family trying to keep from being ripped apart as their father teeters on the brink. All of these plays are written in distinctly different styles and with distinctive voices you are sure to find both surprising and compelling.
The Festival welcomes back two returning playwrights this summer: Jeff Talbott, whose play The Gravedigger's Lullaby was seen in last year's newTACTics Festival, and which will appear on TACT's Mainstage at the Beckett Theatre this coming Spring, and Kenneth Jones, whose Alabama Story was developed by newTACTics and has gone on to enjoy successful productions at major regional theatres across the country. They will be joined by two newTACTics newcomers: Kate Robin, who is well-known for her work on shows such as "Six Feet Under" and "The Affair," and actor and emerging playwright Jeff Keilholtz.
Bad Fiction, written by Jeff Keilholtz, directed by Owen Thompson, will be performed Wednesday, June 8th and Thursday, June 9th, both at 7pm.
The bullets fly on the streets of crime-ridden Chicago: some directly at charismatic, crusading, would-be State's Attorney Alexander Tyson, who's now on the verge of winning a major election as a result of surviving an assassination attempt. But not everything is as it seems as four antagonists - a woman with a battered face, a cop with a checkered past, an ambitious campaign manager, and a cunning political lawyer - clash over what really went down that fateful day, leading the audience into a dangerous and twist-filled world where the person you trust the most just might be your worst enemy. Bad Fiction marks the highly anticipated follow-up to Jeffery Keilholtz's first full-length play, Nightswimming, which was produced at Access Theatre by At Hand Theater Company and subsequently optioned as a screenplay by L.I.F.T. Productions (William Friedkin's Bug) and later by Louisiana Film Consultants (The Mist). Keilholtz's original screenplay, the currently Untitled Marshall Kilduff Project - the account of the San Francisco Chronicle reporter who exposed Reverend Jim Jones and Peoples Temple Church - is also in feature film development. A Boy From Brooklyn: Clinton Simpson And The Orphan Train Keilholtz's new book, is now available in paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com.
In the panhandle of Nebraska, two actresses of a certain age are making a homecoming in their small town. Jane's in from L.A. to check up on her ailing mother. Andrea's back from New York City to bury her father. Hollywood, Nebraska is a rueful yet romantic comedy about the urge to be creative, the itch to move away, and the ache of reconnecting with the family, friends, and feelings that were left behind. Kenneth Jones is a playwright, librettist and lyricist. His play Alabama Story, developed in newTACTics in 2014, was a 2014 Finalist in the O'Neill Theater Center's National Playwrights Conference and a 2016 nominee for the Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award. It had its world premiere by Pioneer Theatre Company in 2015 and this year will have productions in Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois. His play Two Henrys, a Semi-Finalist in the 2015 and 2016 O'Neill Playwrights. Conferences, was seen in Pioneer's 2016 Play-By-Play series and had private table readings by Florida Studio Theatre and TACT. With Karen Azenberg, he co-conceived Pioneer's 2015 holiday musical It Happened One Christmas. His darkly comic Christmas revue Naughty/Nice (with composer Gerald Stockstill) is published by stagerights.com. His musical Voice of the City (with composer Elaine Chelton) was developed by York Theatre Company and Human Race Theatre Company. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, BMI and The 72nd Street Playwrights Collective. He writes about his own plays and advocates for other playwrights, new plays and theatre makers at his website ByKennethJones.com.
What happens when you have to balance the needs of a parent against the needs of your partner and your friends - and both are pulling you apart? In the middle of the night, Davis grapples with trying to shoulder the weight of making everyone happy and keeping everyone safe. But will trying to do it by himself cut him off from his loved ones and leave him truly alone? How To Build A City is a serious comedy about the family we have and the family we make, and how to recognize they're exactly the same thing. Jeff Talbott's play The Submission was the inaugural recipient of the Laurents/Hatcher Award in 2011 and was produced off-Broadway by MCC Theater; it went on to receive the 2012 Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award for New American Play. It was also a semi-finalist for the 2010 O'Neill Playwrights Conference. TACT will present the world premiere of his play The Gravedigger's Lullaby this winter off-Broadway at Theatre Row. His Three Rules for the Dragon was a finalist for the 2016 O'Neill Conference and will have a workshop in June at Premiere Stages at Keen University in New Jersey. Other plays include: A Public Education (finalist for the 2015 O'Neill Playwrights Conference; workshops at Pioneer Theatre Company and TACT), Elliot, All the Stars in the Midnight Sky (workshops - MCC, TACT) and the just-completed i. The musical Imagine Harry, written with composer Will Van Dyke, was presented in the 2015 NAMT Festival of New Musicals, and was a semi-finalist for the 2015 O'Neill Musical Theatre Conference as well as a finalist for the 2014 Rheinbeck Writers Retreat. They released an EP of their work, A View of the River (available on iTunes or wherever digital music is sold). They recently were part of the Goodspeed's 2016 Jonny Mercer Writers Colony finishing a draft of their latest musical, Wintersong. Jeff graduated with honors from the Yale School of Drama. For more visit, www.jefftalbott.com
"Who's bigger? Mr. Bigger, or Mr. Bigger's baby? "Mr. Bigger's baby is a little bigger." The Cohen family tell each other jokes, rehash past history, and desperately try to stay intact as their elderly father struggles for his life amid the baffling bureaucracy of a modern hospital. Will he survive? Will his family? Mr. Bigger's Baby is a hilariously harrowing and very human look at how we cope with mortality ... and our closest relatives. Kate Robin is an award-winning playwright and TV-writer. Theater productions include: Anon., Inside Play (Atlantic Theater Co.) What They Have (South Coast Rep.), Intrigue With Faye (MCC), I See You, The Light Outside (The Flea), Swimming In March (The Market Theater, winner IRNE Best Play of 2001 award), Bride Stripped Bare (ThreadWaxing Space), Given Away (The Playwright's Collective). Her plays have been commissioned and developed by SCR, MTC, Playwrights' Horizons, New York Theater Workshop, The Atlantic Theater Co., The Eugene O'Neill National Playwrights' Conference, JAW/West at Portland Stage, and EST. Television & Film include "The Affair" (Showtime, Writer/ Co-Executive Producer), "Six Feet Under" (HBO, Writer/Supervising producer) and Coming Soon. Kate was a Princess Grace Fellow, received the 2003 Princess Grace Statuette for playwriting, and is an alumna of New Dramatists. Kate is currently showrunning "One Mississippi," Tig Notaro's new show on Amazon.
TACT is a company of theatre artists that reveals, reclaims, and re-imagines great plays of literary merit, creating an intimate theatre experience for its audience by focusing on the text and the actor's ability to bring it to life. From the beginning, TACT made its reputation with its Concert Performance productions: fully rehearsed presentations stripped down to their essence. Staged in our intimate studio space, these performances (currently known as our Salon Series) feature simple staging, costuming, and lighting, refocusing the emphasis of the drama away from spectacle and production and back to the words and the actor - creating theatre in its purest form. This style grew out of the belief that the true magic of theatre lies in the special connection between the artist, the work of art, and the fully engaged audience. TACT is a resident company of NYC's famed Theatre Row and produces their Mainstage, Off-Broadway productions there in the Beckett Theatre. In addition, TACT presents the Salon Series in their studio space at 900 Broadway. Both spaces allow audiences to enjoy an up-close and personal experience with both the play and the artists.
All performances will take place at the TACT Studio at 900 Broadway Suite 905. Each reading will be preceded by a complimentary wine reception beginning at 6:30PM, and followed by a moderated talkback with the cast, director, and playwright. Admission is free of charge and open to the public, and reservations are required. For reservations please visit tactnyc.org/newtactics.
For more information, visit TACT on the web at tactnyc.org/.
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