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World Premiere of BEHOLD, A NEGRESS Kicks Off 2022 at Everyman

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Behold, A Negress is a passionate and daring examination of the challenges of intersectional feminism and the role of art during times of social unrest.

World Premiere of BEHOLD, A NEGRESS Kicks Off 2022 at Everyman

Everyman Theatre kicks off 2022 with Behold, A Negress, a World Premiere play by playwright and self-described boundary-pusher Jacqueline E. Lawton. The production at Everyman Theatre is directed by Tatyana-Marie Carlo and runs from February 1 through February 27, 2022. At-home streaming is also available through March 13.

Behold, A Negress is a passionate and daring examination of the challenges of intersectional feminism and the role of art during times of social unrest and political upheaval. Set in Paris at the beginning of Napoleon's reign, the play imagines an intimate relationship between real-life painter, Marie-Guillemine Benoist and her muse, Madeleine, a formerly enslaved black woman. Inspired by the execution of 18th Century feminist and playwright Olympe de Gouges, Marie and Madeleine maneuver the codes of women's power in pursuit of their own liberty and equality. When Marie's ambition and desire for artistic recognition overshadow Madeleine's sense of justice and personal integrity, the women find themselves on the brink of their own revolution.

Everyman Theatre Founder and Artistic Director, Vincent M. Lancisi, says, "Behold a Negress is a fascinating story about two women and their complex relationship at the time of the French Revolution. It's about an artist and the perception of her subject and it's truly riveting stuff. I have long wanted to produce a Jacqueline Lawton play and when I discovered Behold, A Negress I knew this was the one for us! Her lens is always provocative and fascinating and this play is no exception."

The cast for Behold, A Negress features Resident Company member Hannah Kelly as Marie-Guillemine Benoist and Jessica Natalie Smith as Madeleine. Ms. Kelly was most recently seen in Everyman's production of Thornton Wilder's The Skin of Our Teeth. Ms. Smith last appeared as Keyona in Alien/Nation at the Williamstown Theatre Festival.

Jacqueline E. Lawton is a playwright, dramaturg, producer, and advocate for access, equity, diversity, and inclusion in the American Theatre. She received her MFA in Playwriting from the University of Texas at Austin, where she was a James A. Michener Fellow. Her plays include: Among These Wild Things, Anna K; Behold, A Negress, Blackbirds; Blood-bound and Tongue-tied; Deep Belly Beautiful; The Devil's Sweet Water; Edges of Time, Freedom Hill, The Hampton Years; The Inferior Sex, Intelligence; Love Brothers Serenade; Mad Breed; Noms de Guerre, and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. She is currently the resident dramaturg at North Carolina's PlayMakers Repertory.

In addition to Lawton, the creative team for Behold, A Negress includes director Tatyana-Marie Carlo, assistant director and choreographer Maria Simpkins, set design by Daniel Ettinger, costume design by David Burdick, lighting design by Aja Jackson, and sound design by Hope Villanueva. Jules Odendahl James is the Dramaturg and Estrellita Beatriz is the Intimacy Coach, while Cat Wallis serves as Stage Manager and Molly Prunty as Assistant Stage Manager. Ettinger, Burdick, and Wallis are also members of Everyman's Resident Company of Artists.

Single tickets for in-person performances of Behold, A Negress are on-sale now and start at $29. Three-show subscriptions for the 2021/22 season at Everyman, starting at $99, are also available, and Video on Demand (VOD) streaming access begins February 18 and runs through March 13. Box office hours are Monday through Friday from 9am until 6pm and Saturdays from 10am until 5pm. Visit everymantheatre.org or call 410.752.2208 for more information.


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