United Solo Opens Its Eighth Season with 25 Sold-Out Shows
The world's largest solo theatre festival will begin its eighth season at Theatre Row on Thursday, September 14, with a night of two shows, both of which are completely sold out.
Other shows are selling briskly - interested theatergoers should act quickly to choose from a variety of solo pieces. As in previous years, the festival will present between two and five shows each night for the next ten weeks, adding up to 120 unique productions coming from six continents. The program includes a vast array of solo theatre, including dramas, comedies, adaptations of classics, and dance. Exceptional shows will be recognized by festival awards.
Additionally, a special award will be presented to an artist outside of the festival for outstanding contributions to solo theatre. All winners will be announced at the United Solo Closing Gala on November 19, 2017.The festival will feature newcomers and returning artists - the latter in a special ENCORE category, which includes the opening night performance of "All In Good Time" by Tulis McCall, an award winner and three-time United Solo participant. That night's second show is CALL MY PUBLICIST! by Joshua Ellis, a renowned Broadway publicist who will share behind-the-scenes stories about working with such legends as Carol Channing, Katharine Hepburn, Lena Horne, Ethel Merman, David Merrick, and Stephen Sondheim. Other notable shows include Emmy winner Bill Oberst Jr. in "Ray Bradbury's Pillar of Fire," a sci-fi horror show about the last corpse on a future Earth, where superstition and burial are banned (Sept. 17). Christina Augello, artistic director of San Francisco's Exit Theatre, will present her one-woman piece, "Denial Is A Wonderful Thing," which covers sixty years in sixty minutes (Nov. 5). Jacob Storms offers "Tennessee Rising," a bio play about Tennessee Williams, focusing on lesser?known early chapters of the writer's life (Oct. 14). "Trump Rally," performed by Anna Rock, will feature documentary material from the 2016 election (also Oct. 14). "The Voice," a version of Jean Cocteau's "The Human Voice," will be presented for a third consecutive season, this time featuring Russian actress Ella Nepomniashchaia (Oct. 31). The festival may offer extensions by adding new performance dates by popular demand. Current top sellers include "Regeneration" by Dr. Nancy Rappaport, a solo performer and Harvard professor of psychiatry, who will be directed by Grace Kiley, a two-time United Solo award winner; and "'A' TRAIN" by Broadway veteran Anne Torsiglieri ("Top Girls," "Parade," "Blood Brothers," "Miss Saigon"), directed by Risa Brainin, United Solo award winner for best direction in 2015, and chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance at UCSB. Twenty-five performances have sold out prior to the festival's opening night, and tickets are available for additional performances of those shows. "This is how we unite at United Solo," says Omar Sangare, the artistic director of the festival. "We welcome cultures from around the globe, and witness how much the world has to offer. We leave behind what is divisive, and celebrate what bring us together: diverse voices in unique stories." Theatergoers can vote for their favorite shows to win the United Solo and Backstage Audience Award, presented in collaboration with the festival's major partner, Backstage Magazine. United Solo is also proud of its continuing relationship with The Actors Fund. Throughout the season, audiences and artists will be encouraged to make donations to the Fund, which helps members of the performance community in periods of need and transition, including those impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Tickets priced at $35 are available at the Theatre Row box office (410 West 42nd Street, open daily), over the phone at 212-239-6200, and online through Telecharge. Full schedule is available at www.unitedsolo.org/us/ufest. Artists and companies interested in being presented by the festival in the future are welcome to submit an early application. Instructions can be found online at www.unitedsolo.org/submit.