Lydia R. Diamond's THE GIFT HORSE to Play New Repertory Theatre This Spring

New Repertory Theatre presents The Gift Horse, April 22-May 14, 2017 in the MainStage Theater at the Mosesian Center for the Arts, 321 Arsenal Street, Watertown, MA. The press opening will be on Wednesday, April 26 at 7:30pm.

Tickets are $30-$59 and may be purchased by calling the New Rep Box Office at 617-923-8487 or visiting newrep.org. Student, senior, and group discounts are available.

"New Repertory Theatre is delighted to present the Boston-area premiere of one of playwright Lydia R. Diamond's earliest works," says Artistic Director Jim Petosa. "When I first approached her about a project, she suggested a revival of The Gift Horse. The result is a heartfelt and funny play that shines with Lydia's unique humor and wit."

"As our season comes to a conclusion, I'm pleased to welcome back several New Rep favorites," says Managing Director Harriet Sheets. "Lewis D. Wheeler and Maurice Emmanuel Parent both return after many appearances on our stage, Cloteal L. Horne first worked with New Rep's educational touring program Classic Repertory Company, and Obehi Janice performed in our Next Voices New Play Reading Series last spring. And I'd like to welcome Zachary Rice and Alejandro Simoes to New Rep for the first time!"

A humorous and introspective Boston-area premiere, The Gift Horse follows Ruth, a successful teacher and artist, whose quick and easy wit masks a painful childhood. With the support of her best friend Ernesto and therapist Brian she finally confronts her tumultuous past in a play infused with nationally-acclaimed playwright Lydia R. Diamond's distinctive voice.

New Repertory Theatre is the award-winning, professional theatre company in residence at the Mosesian Center for the Arts in Watertown, MA. For over 30 years, New Rep has been a leader of self-produced theatre in greater Boston, producing contemporary and classic dramas, comedies, and musicals in both the 340-seat MainStage Theater and the 90-seat BlackBox Theater. Annually, New Rep serves over 40,000 patrons, including 2,000 season subscribers. In addition to its mainstage productions, New Rep produces Next Voices, a program dedicated to developing new plays with playwrights through staged readings and world premiere production. Under its Lifelong Enrichment Arts Programs (LEAP), New Rep also produces its Classic Repertory Company, Page To Stage, Insider Experiences, and Spotlight Symposium Series.

New Repertory Theatre produces plays that speak powerfully to the vital ideas of our time.

What we do:

Through the passion and electricity of live theater performed to the highest standards of excellence, New Rep seeks to spark community conversations on crucial contemporary issues.

Our work expands and challenges the human spirit of both artists and audiences. We present world premieres, contemporary plays and classic works in several intimate settings. Our productions are designed to be accessible to all. We are committed to education and enrichment for learners of all ages, with a special dedication to the creation of innovative in-school programming and outreach to underserved audiences. We embrace theater as the basis for enduring connections with our community and as a springboard for meaningful civic engagement.

New Rep is an active advocate for the arts and a major voice in the national dialogue defining the role of theater in our culture.

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

CLOTEAL L. HORNE* (Jordan) returns to New Repertory Theatre after performing in New Rep's Classic Repertory Company productions of Romeo & Juliet and To Kill a Mockingbird. Other Boston credits include Saturday Night/Sunday Morning (Elliot Norton Nomination, Lyric Stage Company); How We Got On (Elliot Norton Nominee, Company One Theatre); Othello (Actors' Shakespeare Project); Little Row Boat and BlueShift readings (Huntington Theatre Company). Off-Broadway credits include The Steadfast (Slant Theatre Project); and Dirty Blood (Billie Holiday Theatre). Regional credits include The Merchant of Venice, Two Gentlemen of Verona, The Comedy of Errors, A Midsummer Night's Dream (Shakespeare & Company); She A Gem (New York Theatre Workshop); To Kill a Mockingbird (Weston Playhouse); A Funny Thing Happened... (Barnstormers); The Clothesline Muse (Aion Productions). She also Assistant Directed The School for Scandal Off-Broadway with Red Bull Theatre Company. Cloteal holds a BFA in Theatre Arts from Boston University and will soon begin Brown/Trinity Rep's MFA Graduate Acting Program. She is a proud Ambassador for the New York Shakespeare Society. Originally from San Diego, California, she now resides in Brooklyn.

OBEHI JANICE* (Ruth) returns to New Repertory Theatre after performing in New Rep's Next Voices New Play Reading Series. Recent credits include Love's Labour's Lost (Commonwealth Shakespeare Company); We're Gonna Die (Company One Theatre/American Repertory Theater); An Octoroon (Company One/ArtsEmerson); Mr g (Underground Railway Theater); her solo show FUFU & OREOS (IRNE Nomination, Best Solo Performance, Bridge Repertory Theater); Arabian Nights (Central Square Theater); It Felt Empty (Theatre on Fire); and Splendor (Company One Theatre). A graduate of Georgetown University, Obehi was named "Boston's Best Actress" by The Improper Bostonian in 2014. Her comedic short, Black Girl Yoga, won the Reel 13/AfroPunk Film Competition (WNET/New York Public Media). American Theatre magazine named her one of "6 Theatre Workers You Should Know" in February 2017. She was also the TCG Fox Foundation Resident Actor at Company One Theatre from 2015-2017. Originally from Lowell, Massachusetts, she currently resides in Medford. Upcoming projects include a staged reading of her new play, Ole White Sugah Daddy, at SpeakEasy Stage Company in May 2017. obehijanice.com

Maurice Emmanuel PARENT* (Brian) returns to New Repertory Theatre after performing in The Snow Queen, Camelot, Rent, Passing Strange, Cabaret, The Wild Party, and Ragtime. Most recently he played the title character in Edward II with Actors' Shakespeare Project where he is the Resident Acting Company member and Co-Acting Artistic Director. Other credits include work with SpeakEasy Stage, Off the Grid Theatre, Underground Railway Theater, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Wheelock Family Theatre, Lyric Stage Company, Boston Theatre Works, Huntington Theatre Company, Cape Playhouse, and Barrington Stage. He received a 2016 IRNE Award for The Snow Queen, the 2015 IRNE Award for The Color Purple, and 2008 Elliot Norton Award (Some Men, Angels in America, and The Wild Party). Maurice is an adjunct faculty member of Boston University and resides in Roxbury. Maurice will have the opportunity to play one of his dream roles, Don Quixote/Cervantes in Man of La Mancha at New Repertory Theatre in December 2017. mauriceparent.com

ZACHARY RICE (Noah) makes his New Repertory Theatre debut. He was most recently seen in Hamlet (Apollinaire Theatre Company). Other credits include directing Dusa, Fish, Stas & Vi (Boston University); Roundabout (Boston Theater Marathon); InSync (Roxbury Repertory Theater); assistant directing Precious Little (Nora Theatre Company); Matchless (Central Square Theater); Significant Other (SpeakEasy Stage); The Housekeeper (Fresh Ink Theatre); and dramaturging When January Feels Like Summer (Underground Railway Theater). Zachary received his BFA in Theater Arts from Boston University. He is originally from Washington state and currently resides in Cambridge.

ALEJANDRO SIMOES (Ernesto) makes his New Repertory Theatre debut. Recent credits include Grand Concourse and The Motherf**ker with the Hat (IRNE Award Supporting Actor, SpeakEasy Stage); Marjorie Prime (Central Square Theater); Peter and the Starcatcher, Light up the Sky (IRNE nomination Best Actor), and One Man, Two Guvnors (Lyric Stage Company); Our Country's Good, Recent Tragic Events, and Aunt Dan and Lemon (Whistler in the Dark); as well as productions with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Shakespeare & Company, American Repertory Theater, Stoneham Theatre, Actors' Shakespeare Project, and The Publick Theatre. He trained at Shakespeare & Company and Northeastern University.

LEWIS D. WHEELER* (Bill) returns to New Repertory Theatre after performing in Muckrakers, Pattern of Life, Rancho Mirage, Long Day's Journey Into Night, Silence, and Cyrano. Recent credits include Finish Line (Boston Theatre Company); Hand to God (SpeakEasy Stage); and Uncanny Valley (Stoneham Theatre). Regional credits include No Man's Land (IRNE Nomination Best Supporting Actor, American Repertory Theater); Richard II (Actors' Shakespeare Project); Blood on the Snow (Bostonian Society); The Importance of Being Earnest, A Number, and The Glass Menagerie (Lyric Stage Company); Doubt, An Ideal Husband, and The Totalitarians (Gloucester Stage); and five seasons with Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre. Also American Stage (St. Pete), Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Nora Theatre Company, Underground Railway Theater, Boston Playwrights' Theatre, Huntington Theatre Company, Vineyard Playhouse, Publick Theatre, Cape Rep, Shakespeare Now, Wellesley Repertory Theatre, Wheelock Family Theatre. Lewis was a founding member of Harbor Stage in Wellfleet, where he performed in The Seagull and Hedda Gabler and directed David Rabe's Sticks and Bones. Film and television credits include Manchester by the Sea, Live by Night, Black Mass, The Company Men, Pink Panther 2, Louisa May Alcott (PBS), Brotherhood, and Hatfields & McCoys. Lewis earned his BA in Theatre and Film Studies at Cornell University and his MFA from the American Film Institute. He resides in Boston and is a proud member of Actors' Equity since 2004.

Jim Petosa (Director/Artistic Director) joined New Repertory Theatre as an award-winning theatre artist, educator, and leader in 2012. He has served as Director of the School of Theatre, College of Fine Arts, at Boston University since 2002, and Artistic Director of Maryland's Olney Theatre Center for the Arts and its National Players educational touring company (1994-2012). While at Boston University, he established the Boston Center for American Performance (BCAP), the professional production extension of the Boston University School of Theatre, in 2008. Throughout the Northeast, Mr. Petosa has directed for numerous institutions, including Brecht on Brecht, Good, Freud's Last Session, The Testament of Mary, Broken Glass, Assassins, On the Verge, The Elephant Man (IRNE Nomination), Amadeus, Three Viewings, The Last Five Years, and Opus at New Rep. In Boston, his work was nominated for two IRNE awards for A Question of Mercy (BCAP). He has served as one of three artistic leaders for the Potomac Theatre Project (PTP/NYC) since 1987. In Maryland, his work earned over 25 Helen Hayes Award nominations as well as the award for outstanding direction of a musical for Jacques Brel is Alive and Well... His production of Look! We Have Come Through! was nominated for the Charles MacArthur Award for outstanding new play, and he earned the Montgomery County Executive's Excellence in the Arts and Humanities Award for Outstanding Artist/Scholar. A member of Actors' Equity Association, Mr. Petosa has served on the executive board of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for StageSource. Originally from New Jersey, he was educated at The Catholic University of America and resides in Quincy.

Lydia R. Diamond (Playwright) Award-winning plays include Smart People, Stick Fly, Voyeurs de Venus, The Bluest Eye, The Gift Horse, Harriet Jacobs, The Inside, and Stage Black. She has worked with Arena Stage, Cort Theatre (Broadway), Chicago Dramatists, Company One Theatre, Congo Square, Goodman Theatre, Hartford Stage, Huntington Theatre Company, Jubilee, Kansas City Rep, Long Wharf, Lorraine Hansberry, McCarter, Mo'Olelo, MPAACT, New Vic, Playmakers Rep, Plowshares, Second Stage, Steppenwolf, and TrueColors. Commissions include Arena Stage, Steppenwolf, McCarter, Huntington Theatre Company, Center Stage, Victory Gardens, and The Roundabout. A recipient of many playwriting awards, she was also an 2005/2006 W.E.B. Du Bois Institute non-resident Fellow, a 2007 TCG/NEA Playwright in Residence at Steppenwolf, a 2006/2007 Huntington Playwright Fellow, a 2012 Sundance Institute Playwright Lab Creative Advisor, a 2012/2013 Radcliffe Institute Fellow, and the 2013/2014 Playwright in Residence at Arena Stage. She is a Northwestern University graduate and has an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from Pine Manor College.



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