Casting Complete for David Johnston’s CONEY at the New Ohio

Blue Coyote Theater Group has announced The Cast for the World Premiere of CONEY, written by David Johnston and directed by Gary Shrader. CONEY begins performances on Saturday, October 27 for a limited engagement through Saturday, November 17.

Opening Night is Tuesday, October 30. The performance schedule is Wednesday – Saturday at 8 PM, with added performances on Sunday, October 28 and Sunday, November 4 at 7 PM; Monday, October 29, Tuesday, October 30 & Tuesday, November 13 at 8 PM. There is no performance on Wednesday, October 31. Performances are at The New Ohio (the Archive Building at 154 Christopher Street, between Greenwich Street and Washington Street in the West Village). Tickets are $25 and are available by calling SmartTix at 212-868-4444 or online at For more information, visit

The Cast of CONEY features Frank Anderson (The Return of Peter Grimm at Metropolitan Playhouse), Eboni Booth (Girls in Trouble at The Flea), Alex Carmine, John DiBenedetto, Andrea Gallo, Tracey Gilbert (Busted Jesus Comix, Mothra Is Waiting at Blue Coyote), Jillaine Gill (Dreams of the Clockmaker at The Wild Project), George C. Hosmer (The Cherry Orchard at Classical Theatre of Harlem), Boo Killebrew (Motel Cherry for New Georges and Clubbed Thumb), PJ Sosko (ReEntry at Urban Stages), Stephen Speights (Glee Club at Blue Coyote), and Amy Staats (Clubbed Thumbs' One Thing I Like To Say Is…).

With cold weather and the threat of gentrification looming, a group of Coney Island die-hards take to the boardwalk for one last summer fling. A panoramic tribute to, as one character puts it, a world that is "all going away," CONEY presents a diverse cast of twelve characters spanning in age from 13 to 73, including carnival barkers and freakshow stars eking out a living; working class friends looking back at a lifetime of courtships on the boardwalk; and a young couple with an obsession for the film The Warriors on a touching first date.  Between the Sideshows at the Sea Shore, the Wonder Wheel, Nathan's Hot Dogs and Shoot the Freak, dreams are conjured and hopes are dashed in acclaimed playwright David Johnston's love letter to America's original national playground.

The design team includes Kerry Chipman (set design) and Nick Houfek (lighting design). The Production Stage Manager is Samantha Davis.

David Johnston's (playwright) plays have been performed and read at The New Group, Moving Arts, The Neighborhood Playhouse, HB Playwrights Foundation, Symphony Space and Ensemble Studio Theatre. New York productions with Blue Coyote Theater Group include Conversations on Russian Literature, a new adaptation of The Oresteia (Time Out Best of 2007); Busted Jesus Comix (GLAAD nominee 2005, London, Los Angeles, DC Cap Fringe); A Bush Carol, or George Dubya and the Xmas of Evil, and Effie Jean in Tahiti (both with music and lyrics by Stephen Speights).  Regional credits include The George Place (Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater), directed by Gary Shrader. Plays with director Kevin Newbury include Candy and Dorothy (GLAAD winner 2006, Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater, Unexpected Stage), and The Eumenides. Publications include Saturday with Martin (Short Plays to Long Remember, TnT), The Eumenides (Playing With Canons, New York Theatre Experience, Inc.), Leaving Tangier (Samuel French), A Funeral Home in Brooklyn, and A Lesson (Smith & Kraus) and the upcoming A Number on the Roman Calendar (Applause Theatrebooks.)  Upcoming projects:  a film adaptation of his short play, Mothra is Waiting, originally produced in New York by Blue Coyote, and Last Things.  Playwriting awards include Theater Oxford, Playwright Residency at the University of Cincinnati, a Berrilla Kerr Foundation Grant, the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, and the Arch & Bruce Brown Foundation. He was also a New Dramatists finalist. Mr. Johnston attended the College of William and Mary and Circle in the Square and is a member of Actors Equity, Dramatists Guild (publications committee), Charles Maryan's Playwrights/Directors Workshop, BMI Librettist Workshop, Blue Coyote Theater Group, and a 2011-12 Resident Artist with American Lyric Theater's Composer Librettist Development Program, where he wrote his first opera libretto, The Wedding Gift of Pirate Granny.

Gary Shrader (director) is a founding member of Blue Coyote Theater Group. For Blue Coyote, he has appeared in Nebraska, Psychopathia Sexualis, Kingfish, Dimly Perceived Threats To The System, Leaving Tangier, A Bush Carol, The Most Wonderful Love, The Oresteia, and Glee Club (Antidepressant Festival, the Brick Theater), and has directed Roots In Water, Busted Jesus Comix, Leaving Tangier, A Bush Carol, The Americans, Paradise, Conversations On Russian Literature, Effie Jean in Tahiti, Nance O'Neil, and three one-acts each for The Standards of Decency Project and Blue Coyote's Happy Endings. In 2008 he directed the premiere of David Johnston's The George Place at Wellfleet Harbor Actor's Theater.

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