Target Margin Theater Presents THE MAKING OF KING KONG
Target Margin Theater (Founding Artistic Director David Herskovits, Associate Artistic Director Moe Yousuf) will present the world premiere or Lisa Clair's The Making of King Kong, a subversive dark comedy that reimagines the making of the classic 1933 film King Kong. Directed by Eugene Ma (The Baltimore Waltz, Oregon Shakespeare Festival; Moliere's The Imaginary Invalid, CSV Cultural Center), The Making of King Kong is a theatrical journey into the cultural monster behind the myth. The play takes a brutal look at America's history of white patriarchy, imperialism, and sexism through the eyes of original King Kong creators Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, and Hollywood starlet Fay Wray.
"Even with its popularity and cinematic achievements, the original King Kong remains a problematic and culturally fraught film," says playwright Lisa Clair. "It's a story we can't seem to escape, which, especially in our deeply polarized times, makes it the perfect vehicle to explore our complicated present. It's oversized story and characters lends itself to satire in refreshing ways, which our talented cast and designers are ready to harness."
The cast for The Making of King Kong features Molly Pope, "one of downtown cabaret's most adventurous performers" (The New York Times), as Fay Wray, Ean Sheehy (Red-Eye to Havre de Grace, Chautauqua!) as Merian C. Cooper, Hanlon Smith-Dorsey (The Debate Society's Blood Play) as Ernest B. Schoedsack, Kevin R. Free (CasablancaBox; Night of the Living N-Word!!) as the Narrator, and Sauda Jackson, Youree Choi, and Claire Fort, who each play a White Yoga Lady.
The Making of King Kong marks the professional playwriting debut of Lisa Clair who conceived the work under the mentorship of multiple Obie-winning playwright Mac Wellman at Brooklyn College's MFA playwriting program. It was further developed at the Bushwick Starr reading series in 2017. In March 2018, excerpts were workshopped at the Spring/Break Art Show, an annual contemporary art show held concurrent to the Armory Show. Clair's playwriting debut follows a decade-long career as a performer with artists such as Banana Bag and Bodice, Nellie Tinder, Dan Fishback, and Little Lord as well as a performance maker with work presented at Dixon Place, Jack, The Bushwick Starr, Ars Nova, and The Silent Barn.
The creative team for The Making of King Kong includes set designer Caitlin Ayer (ID, Please, Tête à Tête Festival London; Opacity, Live Arts Bard Biennial), lighting designer Samuel Chan, sound designer Chad Raines, costume designer Normandy Sherwood, video designer David Pym, movement consultant Sam Pinkleton (Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812), production manager / technical director Will Jennings, and production stage manager James Wyrwicz.
Performances of The Making of King Kong will take place November 29 - December 15 (see above schedule) at Target Margin Theater's THE DOXSEE, located at 232 52nd Street in the Sunset Park section of Brooklyn. Critics are welcome as of November 30 for an official opening on Sunday, December 2 at 5pm. Tickets, priced at $20 ($18 students, seniors), can be purchased by visiting targetmargin.org or by calling 212-352-3101. A benefit performance will be held on Sunday, December 9 at 5pm.
The Making of King Kong is produced by the Lisa Clair Group in association with Immediate Medium's Agency Program as part of TMT Presents, a new programming initiative by Target Margin Theater.
Photo credit: Molly Pope as Fay Way in Lisa Clair's The Making of King Kong. Photo by Maria Baranova.