Australian Actor Matthew Newton Directs NO ONE ASKED ME at NY Fringe Festival
NO ONE ASKED ME, a new play inspired by the true stories of undocumented immigrant NYC high school students, will premiere this summer as part of the 18th annual New York International Fringe Festival. Written by Kate Ballen and directed by Matthew Newton, NO ONE ASKED ME is an insider's look at the intimate human struggle behind the current political debate in Congress around the Dream Act.
Inspired by true stories, NO ONE ASKED ME delves into the turbulent world of "undocumented" students. Each year over 65,000 students without legal immigration papers graduate from high school in the U.S. Yet without a social security number, they are unable to get college financial aid or legal employment and live in constant fear of being "found out" and deported from the only home they have ever known.
Matthew Newton is a critically acclaimed director, writer and actor who has worked extensively in his native Australia in the theater, on television and in film. His debut feature film as writer/director, Three Blind Mice, won the prestigious FIPRESCI critics prize at the London Film Festival and played around the world to rave reviews. Among his many career achievements, Matthew Newton is known for his lead role in Underbelly: A Tale of Two Cities, one of the most successful drama series in Australian television history. "With over 65,000 teenagers graduating from American high schools every year without papers, this is clearly a critically important issue," said Newton. "While Illegal immigration is a topic shaded in grey, the consequences for the people directly affected by it are all too black and white. I'm proud to be a part of this play, shining a light on their stories."
NO ONE ASKED ME marks the debut of playwright Kate Ballen. She was an award-winning journalist at Fortune Magazine, book author, and for the past ten years has worked as a college counselor at an inner city Bronx high school. This play is based on her experience working closely with undocumented students, helping to navigate the college and immigration process. "Matthew Newton's incredible vision as a director and unique talent in bringing out the best in the actors and the script has been transformative for the play. I feel very fortunate to be working with Matthew," said Ballen.
NO ONE ASKED ME plays at the Flamboyan Theatre, 107 Suffolk Street on Friday, Aug. 8 @ 8pm; Sunday, Aug. 10 @ 12pm; Thursday, Aug. 14 @ 2pm; Sunday, Aug. 17 @ 8:30; Friday, Aug. 22 @ 4pm. Tickets are $18 and can be purchased online at FringeNYC.org, by phone at 866-468-7619 up to 24 hours before the show, or in person at FringeCENTRAL, 114 Norfolk Street, NYC.