Click Here for More Articles on KRISTIN CHENOWETH

Second Stage Uptown Announces Cast for Animals Out of Paper

Second Stage Theatre (Carole Rothman, Artistic Director; Ellen Richard, Executive Director) will continue this summer's Second Stage Theatre Uptown Series with the world premiere of Rajiv Joseph's Animals Out of Paper, directed by Giovanna Sardelli.  Beginning previews Monday, July 14 at Second Stage Theatre's uptown home, the McGinn/Cazale Theatre on Broadway at 76th Street, Animals Out of Paper will feature Utkarsh Ambudkar, Kellie Overbey, and Jeremy Shamos.   Opening night is Monday, August 4 at 7:00pm. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Second Stage Theatre Box Office at 212-246-4422 or online at

When a world renowned origami artist opens her studio to a teenage prodigy and his school teacher, she finds that life and love can't be neatly arranged in this drama about finding the perfect fold.  Animals Out of Paper was commissioned through the Time Warner Commissioning Program at Second Stage Theatre and is the first play to be produced through the program.

"Just over a year ago, we embarked on an exciting partnership with Second Stage to nurture new and diverse voices in theater by supporting ten talented writers to create new works," said Lisa M. Quiroz, Senior Vice President of Corporate Responsibility at Time Warner.  "Rajiv is a wonderfully gifted storyteller and we look forward to seeing his vision come to life on the stage."


With this production, Rajiv Joseph returns to Second Stage Theatre Uptown, which produced his play, All This Intimacy, during the 2006 summer season.  His play, Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, will be produced by the Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles at the Kirk Douglas Theatre during the 2008-09 season.  He was recently awarded the Paula Vogel Award by the Vineyard Theatre.  Other productions: New York:  The Leopard and the Fox (adaptation), Alter Ego; Huck & Holden, Cherry Lane Theatre, 2006; All This Intimacy, Second Stage Theatre Uptown, 2006.  Los Angeles: Huck & Holden, The Black Dahlia Theatre, 2006.  Rajiv is a Founding Member of the new New York-based Theatre Company, The Fire Department, and has been a contributing writer on their first two theatrical events, Speakeasy and At War: American Playwrights Respond to the War in Iraq.  He is a former Lark Playwriting Fellow and Dramatist Guild Fellow.  He received his B.A. in Creative Writing from Miami University and his M.F.A. in Playwriting from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and he currently teaches Essay Writing at NYU.  He served for three years in the Peace Corps in Senegal, West Africa.

Director Giovanna Sardelli directed Rajiv Joseph's play All This Intimacy as part of the 2006 Second Stage Uptown Series.  She is an Artistic Associate with The Lark Play Development Center, where her credits include their benefit performance of Earth Girls Are Easy starring Kristin Chenoweth, and the BareBones productions of Apple Cove by Lynn Rosen and Bromius Beaujolais by David Rosenthal. Directing credits include Adriana Sevan's one-woman show Taking Flight (Sundance Theater Lab, L.A.'s Kirk Douglas Theatre); Huck & Holden by Rajiv Joseph, Cherry Lane Theatre; Bad Dates by Theresa Rebeck, Theatre Workshop of Nantucket; Apple Cove, Todd Mountain Theater Project; Back From The Front by Lynn Rosen; and The Seagull, The Three Sisters (a collaboration with Mud/Bone and Studio Tisch), among others. She was the Staff Repertory Director for The Acting Company for whom she directed The Tempest and spent two seasons as Director of the Shakespeare Sedona Institute.

Animals Out of Paper will have scenic design by Beowulf Boritt, costume design by Amy Clark, lighting design by Josh Bradford, and sound design by Bart Fasbender.


Utkarsh Ambudkar most recently appeared in the off-Broadway comedy Rafta Rafta (The New Group).  Other credits include The Me Nobody Knows (Vineyard), History of the Word (Crossroads), Snow Queen (Urban Stages), Welcome To Arroyo's (Lark, Hip-Hop Theater Festival), Political Subversities (Joe's Pub, The Culture Project).  Film: Rocket Science (HBO/Picturehouse), Spinning into Butter, Coming Soon. A former MTV VJ, Utkarsh is also a member of the hip-hop improv comedy group Freestyle Love Supreme, and you can check out his original music at

Kellie Overbey recently appeared in Second Stage's production of Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's Good Boys and True.  Broadway credits include The Coast of Utopia, Twentieth Century, "Q.E.D.", Judgment at Nuremberg, Present Laughter and Buried Child (1996 FANY Award, Best Broadway Debut). Off-Broadway and regional credits include work with playwrights Wallace Shawn, Terrence McNally, James Lapine, Jack Heifner, Lee Blessing, Sam Shepard, Steve Martin, Beth Henley and, most notably, Christopher Durang in Betty's Summer Vacation. Film: Favorite Son (upcoming), Sweet and Lowdown, Outbreak and Love Thy Neighbor.  TV: "Law & Order," "The Job," "That's Life" and Stephen King's "The Stand," among others. As a playwright: Once Around the Sun, Girl Talk and My Wife's Coat (published by Samuel French).

Jeremy Shamos has appeared on Broadway in Second Stage Theatre's Reckless (co-production with MTC) and The Rivals.  Off-Broadway credits include Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme (Lincoln Center); Engaged (Theatre for a New Audience); The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged); Hamlet and Cymbeline (NYSF/Public); Race and The Alchemist (Classic Stage Company); Stranger (Vineyard Theatre); Corpus Christi (MTC). Regional: A Midsummer Night's Dream (Williamstown); Scapin (Court Theatre, Chicago); Springtime for Henry and …Ulster… (Huntington); Baptiste, The Life of Moliere and The Comedy of Errors (Hartford Stage); The Bungler and The Grey Zone (Long Wharf); Sheridan (La Jolla Playhouse). Film/TV: "Hack," The Great New Wonderful and Trust the Man.


Created as a program to help develop and provide exposure for the voices of a new generation of theatre artists, the Second Stage Theatre Uptown Series seeks to develop the skills of emerging playwrights, to provide early-career artists with the support of a major artistic institution, and to create new plays for the American Theatre.  Each show has a limited rehearsal period, as well as a streamlined budget.  The series has helped launch and advance the careers of several up-and-coming playwrights, including Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (whose play, Good Boys and True, was recently part of Second Stage's mainstage season); Adam Bock (The Receptionist, The Drunken City); and Brooke Berman (Hunting and Gathering).

The series premiered in 2002 with three new American plays: …in the absence of spring…, written and directed by Joe Calarco; The Notebook, written by Wendy Kesselman and directed by Evan Yionoulis; and Hunt Holman's Spanish Girl, directed by Erica Schmidt.  Second Stage Theatre Uptown was on hiatus in 2003 due to theatre repairs.  The 2004 season saw the New York premiere of Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's The Mystery Plays, as well as Brooke Berman's The Triple Happiness, starring Ally Sheedy.  In 2005, the series presented the New York premiere of the critically acclaimed comedy Swimming in the Shallows, written by Adam Bock and starring Logan Marshall-Green, as well as the world premiere of Dan O'Brien's The Dear Boy.  The 2006 series featured two world premiere comedies: Getting Home, written by Anton Dudley and directed by David Schweizer, and Rajiv Joseph's All This Intimacy, directed by Giovanna Sardelli.

Last season's Uptown Series featured two world premiere comedies: Marisa Wegrzyn's The Butcher of Baraboo, directed by Judith Ivey, and Josh Tobiessen's Election Day, directed by Jeremy Dobrish.   This summer's first production was Carly Mensch's Len, Asleep in Vinyl, which was called "thoroughly entertaining" by The New York Times.


Animals Out of Paper is performed at the McGinn/Cazale Theatre (Broadway & 76th Street) through Sunday, August 17 on the following schedule:  Tuesday-Saturday at 8:00pm, Wednesday and Saturday at 2:00pm, and Sunday at 3:00pm.  NOTE: There are no matinees on Wednesday, July 16 and July 23.  There is no performance on Tuesday, August 5.

Tickets can be purchased at the Second Stage Theatre Box Office (307 West 43rd Street) or by calling (212) 246-4422.  Advance tickets are not available at the McGinn/Cazale Theater.  Single tickets are $50; advance youth tickets (age 25 and under) are $20; and student RUSH tickets are $10 (available 30 minutes prior to curtain).

For more information, please visit


Arts Orgs

Related Articles

More Hot Stories For You

Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman Announce Future HAIRSPRAY Productions Must Cast to 'Reflect Characters as Written'
Progress is being made in the world of musical theatre today, as OnStage Blog's Chris Peterson reports that Hairspray creator Marc Shaiman and Scott W... (read more)

Chris Trousdale, Former Member of DREAM STREET Who Began Career on Broadway, Has Died at 34
BroadwayWorld is saddened to report that actor and musicians Chris Trousdale has passed away. TMZ has reported that he passed away due to COVID-19. He... (read more)

Lea Michele Responds to Being Called Out for Behavior on GLEE Set- 'We Can All Grow and Change...'
Lea has now issued an apology in response. 'I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused,' says Michele. 'We can all grow and chan... (read more)

Amber Riley Responds to Lea Michele Drama With 'I Don't Give a S---. People Are Out Here Dying'
As BroadwayWorld reported yesterday, Lea Michele is under fire by various people who have worked with her on stage and screen over the years. The late... (read more)

NAACP Encourages Moment of Silence Today to Honor George Floyd
NAACP is asking that everyone joins in for a moment of silence for 8 minutes and 46 seconds today, June 4, at 3:45pm.... (read more)

Amanda Kloots Says Nick Cordero is Getting 'Slightly, Slightly Better Every Day'
Amanda Kloots has shared another update on the health journey of her husband, Broadway veteran Nick Cordero. ... (read more)