SURER GIRL New York Premiere Kicks-Off With Special Talkback

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SURER GIRL New York Premiere Kicks-Off With Special TalkbackThe New York premiere of Surfer Girl by acclaimed screen & playwright Leslye Headland (Assistance, Bachelorette), presented by Animus Theatre Company (Jonathan Judge-Russo, Founding Artistic Director) in association with The Dirty Blondes, will begin performances tomorrow, Tuesday, April 10, 2018 at The Foley Gallery (59 Orchard Street, between Grand and Hester), located in Manhattan's esteemed Lower Eastside gallery district. In honor of the productions inaugural performance, the evening will include a special post-performance conversation with Ms. Headland, who is currently in NYC filming her previously announced Netflix series with Amy Poehler and Natasha Lyonne.

Though previously presented as a typical theatrical experience, Animus Theatre Company has removed Surfer Girl from its intended setting by placing it in a conceptual performative environment - the art gallery - and featuring eight actresses under the direction of four different directors across its 16 performances. By showcasing multiple actors and directors the company aims to give each performance a unique interpretation of the same sin, sloth. No matter what social class, geopolitical demographic, race or sexual preference, by contrasting our differences and highlighting our similarities, the company hopes this production will serve to emphasize how the human struggle is ultimately the same regardless of these differences, and how we as humans are all susceptible to the same "sins."
Patrons of Surfer Girl can partake in a cash bar featuring Brooklyn Brewery and an assortment of wine selections while viewing THE ONE of a kind art installation by New York Times lauded visual artist Chaney Trotter, specifically designed to serve as the backdrop for this exciting NY premiere, and mingling with the evening's performer and director.

Surfer Girl will be presented at The Foley Gallery (59 Orchard Street, between Grand and Hester) on Tuesdays & Wednesdays at 7:00pm (doors open 7:00pm, performance begins 7:30pm) from April 10 through May 30, 2018. Tickets are available for $30 each by visiting www.surfergirl.brownpapertickets.com. For more information about Animus Theatre Company and its production of Surfer Girl, please visit www.animustheatre.org

What happens when we disappear in order to survive; softening our edges and blurring our outlines to the point of invisibility so the people around us will, well...keep us around? Surfer Girl, Ms. Headland's one- woman play exploring the sin of sloth, and part of her "Seven Deadly Plays" cycle, tackles these questions. Not exactly homeless, never quite broke, always ready to become whomever she needs to be in order to stick around just that little bit longer, Surfer Girl chronicles a young woman's affectless journey through life as she combats that passively inert state of mind that gives RISE to her loss of self and to...couch surfing.

Tuesday, April 10 & Wednesday, April 11 at 7:00pmPerformance by Courtney Shaw*With direction by Alex Correia*
Tuesday, April 17 & Wednesday, April 18 at 7:00pmPerformance by Erin Leigh Schmoyer*With direction by Taphat Tawil
Tuesday, April 24 & Wednesday, April 25 at 7:00pmPerformance by Karen EilbacherWith direction by Jen Wineman
Tuesday, May 1 & Wednesday, May 2 at 7:00pmPerformance by Amy Northup*With direction by Jen Wineman
Tuesday, May 8 & Wednesday, May 9 at 7:00pmPerformer to be announcedWith direction by Alex Correia*
Tuesday, May 15 & Wednesday, May 16 at 7:00pmPerformer to be announcedWith direction by Taphat Tawil
Tuesday, May 22 & Wednesday, May 23 at 7:00pmPerformer to be announced With direction by Noah Himmelstein
Tuesday, May 29 & Wednesday, May 30 at 7:00pmPerformance by Sara Canter*With direction by Noah Himmelstein
*Denotes Animus Theatre Company member

Leslye Headland began her career writing and directing the Seven Deadly Plays series at IAMA Theatre Company in LA. Her Off-Broadway plays include Bachelorette, Assistance and The Layover. Bachelorette was the basis for her 2012 directorial film debut starring Kirsten Dunst, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Other film credits include writing the 2014 remake of About Last Night starring Kevin Hart and writing/directing Sleeping with Other People starring Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie which also premiered at Sundance in 2015. TV credits include: pilots for HBO, Netflix and NBC, Terriers, BLUNT TALK and Heathers. Headland's Sin Cycle is currently onstage at IAMA in LA, with the world premiere of the seventh and final play in the cycle, Cult of Love ("pride"), in a full production at IAMA in May 2018. Headland is currently working on her new show for Netflix, Russian Doll.

CHANEY TROTTER is a painter and installation artist originally from Houston, Texas. Trotter received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Southern California, her Post-Baccalaureate degree from Maryland Institute College of Art, and her Master of Fine Arts from Parsons The New School for Design. Trotter's work interweaves the realms of Science and mythology by constructing immersive environments and relics that are totemic in nature. These icons blend both natural and manmade forces into single entities, utilizing stories from the past as a platform for intricate narratives about the present. Her paintings and installations construct these methodologies through a myriad of iconographies, archaic symbols, and contemporary characters caught in the flux of modern myth-making, addressing the way that belief systems rooted in logic and/or mysticism consistently shift power unto one another. Trotter has been featured in publications such as The New York Times, Artnet News, Whitewall Magazine, Gothamist, Artlog, Hyperallergic, What Weekly Magazine, Artist Portfolio Magazine, and others. She has exhibited work across the United States, primarily in California, Baltimore, Texas, and New York City, and abroad in Amsterdam. Trotter currently lives in Manhattan and continues to make work out of her studio in Long Island City.

Animus Theatre Company is an artist-driven company whose mission is to explore and illuminate the resilience of the human spirit. Animus Theatre Company (Amy Northup, Assoc. Artistic Director; Karen Sours, Literary Director) produced its first play, John Patrick Shanley's Where's My Money? at the Cherry Lane Theatre, in 2012. Notable productions include Collected Shorts by Tennessee Williams (Moony's Kid Don't Cry, The Pink Bedroom, Talk to Me Like the Rain and Let Me Listen, and The Long Goodbye), Pericles, Prince of Tyre by Shakespeare, and two 12-Hour Reading Festivals featuring the Sin Cycle works of Leslye Headland (The Accidental Blonde, Assistance, Bachelorette, Cinephilia, Reverb, and Surfer Girl) and John Patrick Shanley (The Big Funk, Defiance, Italian American Reconciliation, Moonstruck, The Red Coat, Sailor's Song, Savage in Limbo, Women of Manhattan) at Broadway's Circle in THE SQUARE Theatre.

Notable artists who have worked with Animus Theatre Company include playwrights Lesyle Headland, Theresa Rebeck, John Patrick Shanley, Bob Glaudini; directors Pamela Adlon, Edward Berkeley, Matthew Lillard, Andrew Lippa, Alan Langdon; and stage & film actors Alexis Bledel, Ben Foster, Andre Holland and Margo Seibert, among others.

The mission of the NY based theater company, The Dirty Blondes, is feminist in nature, with a goal to break down stereotypes and encourage a nuanced, inclusive dialog. Founded by Artistic Director Ashley Jacobson and Executive Director Elizabeth Sarkady in 2012, the company seeks to explore the nature of all human prejudice, subverting FACE VALUE perception with sophisticated and subtle shades of distinction.

Notable productions include the Off-Broadway premiere of Jacobson's (Winner, Overall Excellence in Playwriting, 2015 FringeNYC) The American Play at the Soho Playhouse; The Resister Project, a week long, ACLU fundraising festival, held during the first days of the Trump presidency; SEX by Mae West, a staged reading spotlighting the icon's famously banned play with panel discussions featuring sex workers and feminist historians; and Detroit, NY a short play festival featuring seven Detroit-based playwrights, aiming to shed light on Detroit's shifting culture and state of bankruptcy.

The Dirty Blondes are resident artists at Horse Trade Theater, producing in its celebrated downtown venues Under St. Mark's and The Kraine Theater. For details about The Dirty Blondes and the upcoming season visit: www.thedirtyblondes.org

Foley Gallery, located in the heart of the LES gallery district, has been focused primarily on drawing, cut paper, painting and photography. Its new space in the historic landmark "Pink Building" at 59 Orchard St, is allowing the gallery to expand its horizons and to feature a wider variety of mediums and hosted events.



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