Monk, Esper, et al. Set for STORIES ON 5 STORIES, 11/1


Acclaimed theater company Playwrights Horizons (Tim Sanford, Artistic Director; Leslie Marcus, Managing Director) has announced the initial line-up of performers participating in the popular return of its unique benefit event STORIES ON 5 STORIES on Monday evening, November 1. 

The sixteen performers include Tony and Obie Award winner Debra Monk (Assassins at PH; Redwood Curtain, Curtains), Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning playwright and Obie Award-winning actor Michael Cristofer (The Shadow Box; as screenwriter: The Witches of Eastwick, Bonfire of the Vanities), Marylouise Burke (The Savannah Disputation at PH; Is He Dead?, Into the Woods), Michael Esper (Crazy Mary at PH; American Idiot, subUrbia), Sara Gettelfinger (Grey Gardens at PH; Dirty Rotten Scoundrels), Annie Parisse (Clybourne Park and The Credeaux Canvas at PH; "Law & Order"), Paul Sparks (Essential Self-Defense at PH; Hedda Gabler), Obie winner Michael Potts (Grey Gardens at PH; The America Play), David AaRon Baker (Dead Man's Cell Phone at PH; A Raisin in the Sun), Peter Bartlett (the current A Free Man of Color, The Drowsy Chaperone; "One Life to Live"), Obie Award winner Barry Del Sherman (Moe's Lucky Seven at PH; American Beauty), Hale Appleman (Passion Play, Teeth), Chris Henry Coffey (Frank's Home at PH; "Law & Order: Criminal Intent"), Neal Huff (From Above at PH; Take Me Out), Nikki M. James (All Shook Up, The Wiz) and Jennifer Mudge (The Philanthropist, Reckless).

As previously announced, the event will feature new works by six of the theater's alumni writers and one rising star and PH staffer: Michael Cyril Creighton (PH debut; writer, creator and star of the hit online sitcom "Jack in a Box"), Kate Fodor (100 Saints You Should Know at PH; Hannah and Martin), Obie Award winner Melissa James Gibson (This at PH; [sic], Suitcase), Tony Award-winning composer Jack Herrick (Wilder at PH; Broadway's Fool Moon), Tony Award-winning director/librettist James Lapine (Sunday in the Park with George, March of the Falsettos, Falsettoland and Fran's Bed all at PH; Into the Woods), Marlane Meyer (Moe's Lucky Seven and The Chemistry of Change at PH; "Law & Order: Criminal Intent") and Peter Parnell (An Imaginary Life, The Rise and Rise of Daniel Rocket, Romance Language all at PH).  The event will take place at Playwrights Horizons' home at 416 West 42nd Street, and will benefit the company's annual programs and productions.  Additional performers to be announced. 

This year's theme for STORIES ON 5 STORIES is The Devil You Know.  Promotional materials state: "How many devils do you know?  Seven of Playwrights Horizons' favorite writers will tackle the devils they know and flirt with the devils they don't at our one-night-only, one-of-a-kind fundraiser, STORIES ON 5 STORIES.  New York's finest actors perform short plays in unique locations throughout our five-story building; be one of 200 guests to watch a drama unfold in the costume shop or share a comedic moment in a stairwell.  A guaranteed devilishly delightful evening."

Event Board Chair is Amy McIntosh.  Patron Co-Chairs are Evan Hoffman and Eugene Paceleo.  Generation PH Chair is Marisa Sechrest.  Generation PH is a New Group of young supporters aged 40 and under.

"STORIES ON 5 STORIES is truly a unique event, one that I look forward to every year for its unparalleled originality and for the sense of community it inspires in all who attend: patrons and artists alike," said Artistic Director Tim Sanford.  "I'm thrilled to invite this outstanding and eclectic group of artists to write pieces that, whether they take place in the box office or a dressing room, will celebrate our beautiful building, the inherent creativity of theater, and the legacy of Playwrights Horizons. And the after party can't be beat."

Playwrights Horizons, celebrating its 40th Anniversary Season, is a writer's theater dedicated to the support and development of contemporary American Playwrights, composers and lyricists and to the production of their new work. Under the leadership of artistic director Tim Sanford and managing director Leslie Marcus, the theater company continues to encourage the new work of veteran writers while nurturing an emerging generation of theater artists. In its 40 years, Playwrights Horizons has presented the work of more than 375 writers and has received numerous awards and honors, including a special 2008 Drama Desk Award for "ongoing support to generations of theater artists and undiminished commitment to producing new work."  Notable productions include four Pulitzer Prize winners: Doug Wright's I Am My Own Wife (2004 Tony Award, Best Play), Wendy Wasserstein's The Heidi Chronicles (1989 Tony Award, Best Play), Alfred Uhry's Driving Miss Daisy and Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Sunday in the Park with George, as well as the current Edward Albee's Me, Myself & I, Annie Baker's Circle Mirror Transformation (three 2010 Obie Awards including Best New American Play), Bruce Norris' Clybourne Park, Melissa James Gibson's This (2010 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist), Doug Wright, Scott Frankel and Michael Korie's Grey Gardens (three 2007 Tony Awards), Craig Lucas's Prayer For My Enemy and  Small Tragedy (2004 Obie Award, Best American Play), Adam Rapp's Kindness, Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's Assassins, Sarah Ruhl's Dead Man's Cell Phone, Bruce Norris's The Pain and the Itch, Lynn Nottage's Fabulation (2005 Obie Award for Playwriting), Kenneth Lonergan's Lobby Hero, David Greenspan's She Stoops to Comedy (2003 Obie Award), Kirsten Childs's The Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin (2000 Obie Award), Richard Nelson and Shaun Davey's James Joyce's The Dead, William Finn's March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland, Christopher Durang's Betty's Summer Vacation and Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All For You, Richard Nelson's Goodnight Children Everywhere and Franny's Way, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty's Once on This Island, Jon Robin Baitz's The Substance of Fire, Scott McPherson's Marvin's Room, A.R. Gurney's Later Life, Adam Guettel and Tina Landau's Floyd Collins and Jeanine Tesori and Brian Crawley's Violet.

Tickets for STORIES ON 5 STORIES can be reserved by visiting the Playwrights Horizons website or by calling Michelle Kiefel at (212) 564-1235, extension 3143.

For subscription and ticket information to all Playwrights Horizons productions, call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200, Noon to 8 pm daily, or purchase online at the Playwrights Horizons website at


Photo Credit: Walter McBride/WM Photos

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