Photo Flash: Jonathan Groff, Rutina Wesley, et al. in MCC's THE SUBMISSION
Shaleeha G'ntamobi's stirring new play about an alcoholic black mother and her card sharp son trying to get out of the projects has just been accepted into the nation's preeminent theater festival. Trouble is, Shaleeha G'ntamobi doesn't exist, except in the imagination of wannabe-playwright Danny Larsen (Jonathan Groff), who created her as a kind of affirmative-action nom-de-plume.
But a nom-de-guerre may prove more useful as the lies pile up, shaky alliances are forged, and everyone dear to Danny must decide whether or not to run for cover as the whole thing threatens to blow up in his lily white face. New York-based actor Jeff Talbott makes an auspicious play-writing debut with The Submission after taking home the first-ever Laurents/Hatcher Award for the play earlier this year.
The production features actors Jonathan Groff (Spring Awakening, "Glee"), Will Rogers (When the Rain Stops Falling), Eddie Kaye Thomas (American Pie, HBO's "How to Make It in America"), and Rutina Wesley ("True Blood," The Vertical Hour).
MCC Theater recently celebrated its 25th anniversary season as one of New York City's leading Off Broadway theater companies, committed to presenting New York and world premieres each season. When MCC Theater was founded in 1986, its mission was simple: to bring new theatrical voices to theater-going audiences. MCC Theater continues to accomplish this yearly through three programmatic areas: its mainstage works; its Playwrights' Coalition, which actively seeks and develops new and emerging writers; and its Education & Outreach Programs, including the Youth Company, which allow more than 1,200 students yearly to experience theater, increase literacy and discover their own voices through the creation of original theater pieces.
Notable MCC Theater highlights include: the 2008 Tony Award-nominated reasons to be pretty by Neil LaBute, last season's The Pride, Fifty Words, the 2004 Tony-winning production of Bryony Lavery's Frozen; Neil LaBute's Fat Pig; Rebecca Gilman's The Glory of Living; Marsha Norman's Trudy Blue; Margaret Edson's Pulitzer Prize-winning Wit; Tim Blake Nelson's The Grey Zone and Alan Bowne's Beirut. Over the years, the dedication to the work of new and emerging artists has earned MCC Theater a variety of awards.
Photo Credit: Joan Marcus