A.R.T. Announces GLORIA: A LIFE Creative Team, Cast, And Associated Programming
American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) at Harvard University, under the leadership of Terrie and Bradley Bloom Artistic Director Diane Paulus and Executive Producer Diane Borger, have announced the creative team and cast of Gloria: A Life, presented in association with the McCarter Theatre Center and by special arrangement with Daryl Roth.
Written by Tony Award nominee Emily Mann (Having Our Say, Still Life) and directed by Tony Award winner Paulus (Jagged Little Pill, The White Card), performances of the Off-Broadway hit begin Friday January 24, 2020 at the Loeb Drama Center in Cambridge, MA. The production opens officially on Thursday, January 30, 2020. Due to one week of added performances, it will now close Saturday, March 1, 2020.
Vulture calls Gloria: A Life, "unique, deeply moving...An acknowledgement and celebration of many lives, dozens of brilliant, tireless women whose years and years of work hold us all up."
History. Her story. Our story. This new play about Gloria Steinem and the women she has partnered with in a decades-long fight for equality is brought to life by a dynamic ensemble of performers. Fifty years after Gloria began raising her voice and championing those of others, her vision is as urgent as ever. Gloria's belief in talking circles as a catalyst for change offers us all a path forward. The first act is Gloria's story; the second is our own. Community Engagement Support and Production Sponsorship of Gloria: A Life is provided by Allison Johnson. Community Engagement Sponsorship is provided by Linda Henry. Education and engagement support is provided by Bank of America.
"For millennia, human beings have been sitting around campfires, telling and listening to each other's stories. Books and computer help us to learn, but only being together with all five senses allows us to empathize, to understand, and to act," says Steinem. "This is the magic of both a movement and a play."
"Throughout her work as an activist, Gloria has created talking circles-in her own words, 'spaces for people to tell their own stories and respond to one another,'" says Paulus. Inspired by this practice and by A.R.T.'s ongoing Act II discussion series, each performance of Gloria: A Life will culminate in a talking circle that invites the audience to reflect on the play, the women's movement, and the ongoing struggle for equality in our world today. Each talking circle will be initiated by a special guest-participants will be announced at a later date.
A.R.T.'s Act II series is designed to disrupt the role of the spectator as passive observer, inspire deeper engagement with the stories on our stages, and create impact in Greater Boston and our world. Past events have included conversations integrated into productions of The White Card, Notes From the Field: Doing Time in Education, and others; speaker series; gallery visits; moderated conversations; and more.
Gloria: A Life, written by Mann and directed by Paulus, premiered at the Daryl Roth Theatre on October 2, 2018, and played through March 31, 2019. Mann restaged the production this past fall to open her final season as McCarter Theatre Center's Artistic Director.
GLORIA: A LIFE CREATIVE TEAM
- Emily Mann, Playwright (see bio below)
- Diane Paulus, Director (see bio below)
- Amy Rubin, Scenic Designer (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; Octet at The Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre; Thom Pain [based on nothing] at The Pershing Square Signature Center; and others)
- Jessica Jahn, Costume Designer (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; West Side Story at Lyric Opera of Chicago; Blue at Glimmerglass Opera; and others)
- Jason Lyons, Lighting Designer (Gloria: A Life at the McCarter Theater, directed by Emily Mann; Rock of Ages at New World Stages; Clueless, The Musical at The Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre; and others)
- Andrea Allmond, Co-Sound Designer (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; Twelfth Night at Dallas Theatre Center; and others)
- Robert Kaplowitz, Co-Sound Designer (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; Fela! on Broadway; and others)
- Elaine McCarthy, Projection Designer (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; Notes From the Field: Doing Time in Education at A.R.T.; Wicked, Spamalot, and Impressionism on Broadway; and others.
Patricia Kalember (The White Card at A.R.T.; Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; Don't Dress for Dinner; at Roundabout Theatre Company; and others) returns to the role of Gloria Steinem, having portrayed her in the final months of the Off-Broadway run.
The ensemble of Gloria: A Life includes:
- Patrena Murray (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; Father Comes Home From The Wars (Parts 1, 2 & 3) at A.R.T.; The Winter's Tale at The Public Theater Mobile Unit; A Midsummer Night's Dream at Shakespeare in the Park; and others)
- Brenda Withers (Gloria: A Life at the McCarter Theatre Center; Crimes of the Heart and A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Daryl Roth Theatre; and others)
- Erika Stone (Gloria: A Life at the McCarter Theatre Center; Whale Song and Our Voices Will Be Heard at Perseverance Theatre; and others)
- Eunice Wong (Gloria: A Life at the McCarter Theatre Center; The Trial of the Catonsville Nine at Transport Group; and others)
- Joanna Glushak (Gloria: A Life at the Daryl Roth Theatre; War Paint and A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder on Broadway; and others)
- Gabrielle Beckford (Gloria: A Life at the McCarter Theatre Center; Crowns co-produced McCarter Theatre Center and the Longwharf Theatre; Nina Simone: Four Women, A Play at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival; and others)
- Rachel Cognata (Greater Good at Company One Theatre/A.R.T.; Hype Man and Rally at Company One Theatre; and others)
"A.R.T. engages with our audiences not just as arts lovers, but as citizens of the world-raising and amplifying the most pressing issues of our time through the theater we produce," says Paulus.
A.R.T. will continue its robust commitment to its community by collaborating with not-for-profit organizations from Greater Boston throughout the run of Gloria: A Life, deepening existing relationships and catalyzing new partnerships. Each performance will lift up an organization by providing free tickets to its constituents, featuring its mission and work in the Loeb Drama Center Lobby, and engaging its attendees in the nightly talking circle.
A.R.T. will give away more than 1,200 tickets over the course of the run, subsidized by generous supporters of the theater. As of December 2, confirmed partner not-for-profits include:
- 826 Boston
- Apprentice Learning
- Big Sister Association of Greater Boston
- Boston Women's Fund
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston, Sponsored by D. Randy Peeler
- Cambridge Women's Center
- Combined Jewish Philanthropies
- Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts
- Hack.Diversity, Sponsored by Mike Feinstein
- Haley House
- Invest in Girls, Sponsored by Dune Thorne
- Jewish Women's Archive
- More Than Words, Sponsored by Ward Mooney
- RESPOND, Inc.
- Rehearsal for Life (Urban Improv)
- Rosie's Place, Sponsored by Sarah Hancock
- Science Club for Girls
- Strong Women, Strong Girls
- Transition House
- Women's Bar Foundation of Massachusetts
- Women Thriving, Inc.
A full list of partner organizations will be announced at a later date. Learn more about the Gloria: A Life Ticket Subsidies Initiative at AmericanRepertoryTheater.org/Gloria.
Tickets starting at $25 are available now online at AmericanRepertoryTheater.org, by phone at 617.547.8300, and in person at the Loeb Drama Center Ticket Services Offices (64 Brattle Street, Cambridge). Discounts are available to A.R.T. Subscribers and Members, groups, students, seniors, Blue Star families, EBT card holders, and others.
ASL Interpreted performances:
Sunday, February 16 at 2PM and Wednesday, February 19 at 7:30PM
Open Captioned performances:
Thursday, February 20 at 7:30PM and Saturday, February 22 at 2PM
Audio Described performances:
Friday, February 28 at 7:30PM and Saturday, February 28 at 2PM
Additional access performances will be announced at a later date. Visit AmericanRepertoryTheater.org/access for current upcoming dates.