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Russell Harvard to Star in ASL and Spoken English Production of OEDIPUS Presented by Deaf West Theatre & Getty Museum

The Oedipus cast includes Ashlea Hayes, Amelia Hensley and more.

Russell Harvard to Star in ASL and Spoken English Production of OEDIPUS Presented by Deaf West Theatre & Getty Museum

Getty Museum and Los Angeles's Tony Award-winning Deaf West Theatre will present a thrilling fresh take on Sophocles' Oedipus this fall featuring a bilingual production in American Sign Language (ASL) and spoken English. Directed by Jenny Koons (Blue Man Group, Head Over Heels at The Pasadena Playhouse), Oedipus premieres as the 16th annual outdoor theater production in the Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman Theater at the Getty Villa.

In this visually rich and innovative reimagining of Sophocles' classic play, Oedipus unfolds as a murder mystery, a political thriller, and a psychological whodunit. Throughout this fabled story of patricide and family complexities, King Oedipus is confronted not only with legacy and destiny but also culture and language. This reimagined production will center American Sign Language and incorporate present day technology bringing new artistic facets to a classic piece of Greek literature.

"Oedipus is a classic true crime story, as a man tries desperately to solve a murder in order to save his city. Our retelling digs deep into the suspense of the story with all the elements of a thriller, including false leads, fuzzy memories, and a looming prophecy from a mysterious Oracle," says Jenny Koons, director and adaptor.

The Oedipus cast includes Russell Harvard in the title role of King Oedipus (Broadway's To Kill a Mockingbird, King Lear and DWT's Spring Awakening), Ashlea Hayes ("Switched at Birth"), Amelia Hensley (DWT's Spring Awakening), Matthew Jaeger (DWT's Children of a Lesser God and the 2018 Broadway Revival), Gregor Lopez (DWT and La Phil Fidelio), Andrew Morrill (The Music Man at Olney Theatre Center, Dancing Girls), On Shiu ("The Female Gaze", "Last Place Trophy"), Akia Takara (All About Araya, "Insecure"), Alexandra Wailes (Broadway's For Colored Girls, DWT's Spring Awakening and Big River), and Jon Wolfe Nelson ("The L Word", "Blacklist"). Additional casting will be announced at a later date.

The play will feature set design by Tanya Orellana, costumes by Jojo Siu, lighting design by Jared A. Sayeg, projection design by Yee Eun Nam, and music and sound design by Peter Bayne. ASL Choreographers Andrew Morrill and Alexandria Wailes. DJ Kurs and Laura Hill produce for Deaf West Theatre.

"We are delighted to debut our first bilingual outdoor theater production with the acclaimed Deaf West Theater of Sophocles' classic tragedy," says Jeffrey Spier, senior curator of antiquities at Getty Villa Museum. "Theater was a fundamental component of religious, social, and political life in ancient Greece, and as our program at the Villa demonstrates, these works still engage and delight modern audiences some 2,500 years later."

"Bridging the gap between the Deaf and hearing communities is central to Deaf West's mission," says DJ Kurs, Artistic Director of Deaf West Theatre. "We are excited to bring new life to this classic story. We are thrilled at the opportunity to build upon the early precepts of the art form of theater such as staging and body language,"

Performances of Oedipus will be held Thursdays through Saturdays, September 7 -October 1, at 8 pm, with previews on September 1-3, 2022, at 8 pm and a special veteran show on Tuesday, September 13 at 8pm.

Tickets go on sale on Friday, July 1. Thursday night performances are $40. ($36 for students and seniors), Friday night performances are $42, and Saturday night performances are $48. Student and senior discounts are available for Thursday night performances only. Ticket prices for the previews are $25.

Tickets will be available online or by calling (310) 440-7300.

Oedipus contains sexual situations that are not recommended for persons under the age of 15.?

ABOUT Deaf West Theatre

Founded in Los Angeles in 1991, Tony Award®-winning Deaf West Theatre (Artistic Director, DJ Kurs), engages artists and audiences in unparalleled theater experiences inspired by Deaf culture and the expressive power of sign language, weaving American Sign Language (ASL) with spoken English to create a seamless ballet of movement and voice. Committed to innovation, collaboration, and training, Deaf West Theatre is the artistic bridge between the Deaf and hearing worlds and a trusted resource for authentic storytelling and casting in film, television, and video projects. Projects include: a groundbreaking production of Fidelio with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel; The Solid of Life of Sugar Water by Jack Thorne; Our Town, in a co-production with The Pasadena Playhouse; Edward Albee's At Home at the Zoo, in a co-production with the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts; Spring Awakening the Musical, which transferred from Inner-City Arts to the Wallis and then to Broadway (three Tony Award® nominations including Best Revival of a Musical); American Buffalo (Los Angeles Times "Critic's Choice"); Cyrano, a co-production with The Fountain Theatre (Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Production); Big River the Musical (Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle and Backstage Garland awards for Best Musical in its L.A. premiere, a Tony Award® nomination, and four Drama Desk Awards on Broadway); Pippin, produced at the Mark Taper Forum in a co-production with Center Theatre Group; Sleeping Beauty Wakes, also a co-production with Center Theatre Group, presented at the Kirk Douglas Theatre; Oliver! (Ovation Award for Best Musical) and A Streetcar Named Desire (Ovation Award for Best Play). In 2005, Deaf West Theatre was selected to receive the Highest Recognition Award by the Secretary of Health and Human Services for its "distinguished contributions to improve and enrich the culture lives of Deaf and hard of hearing actors and theater patrons.


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