Kitchen Theatre Company presents BRAHMAN/I: A ONE-HIJRA STAND-UP COMEDY SHOW
Kitchen Theatre Company continues its 2017-2018 Season with Brahman/i: A One-Hijra Stand-Up Comedy Show by Aditi Brennan Kapil, a play The Hollywood Reporter called "a layered, insightful consideration of Indian-American cultural identity, gender and colonialism that happens to take the form of a stand-up comedy routine." Kitchen Theatre Company's new Producing Artistic Director, M. Bevin O'Gara, directs. Performances of Brahman/i begin at the Kitchen Theatre Company in The Percy Browning Theatre on October 8.
Meet B, an intersex stand-up comedian from Athens, Georgia whose act explores everything from his/her/their Indian heritage to history, mythology, gender roles, and horrifying middle and high school experiences, assisted by J, electric bass playing sidekick. The play answers questions and raises more about the complexities of gender identity and why we see it the way we do, and it does it in the context of a laugh out loud funny play.
O'Gara previously directed a production of Brahman/i at Company One in Boston. "I am so excited to bring this play and this dream team to Ithaca," she says. "Playwright Aditi Brennan Kapil is a bold, innovative voice in American theatre, and Aila Peck is breathtaking as 'B'. She is an all-star collaborator who exudes warmth and truthfulness on stage and off. Adding Thom Dunn into the mix has opened up so many possibilities with the play. The two of them together are simply electric. And it only sort of makes me jealous, since I'm married to Thom."
The text of Brahman/i begs to be dropped right into a Comedy Club, and the Kitchen will be doing just that. The Percy Browning Theatre will be transformed into The Laughing Stock Comedy Club, complete with table service. Scenic designers Christopher and Justin Swader and lighting designer Annie Wiegand will be bringing you a full-on Comedy Club experience. Having Wiegand at the Kitchen marks the theatre's first foray into working with D/deaf artists. The play also features live music and original sound design by Thom Dunn, who plays the bassist J. The Production Stage Manager is Jennifer Schilansky.
Special events for Brahman/i include Pay What You Can Nights on October 8 and 10, a Business and Arts Mixer before the show on Wednesday, October 18, Actor's Forum discussions after the show on October 13 and 20, and a post-show conversation with Vijay Pendakur, Dean of Students at Cornell University on Sunday, October 22nd. For more events and information, visit kitchentheatre.org.
Providing Underwriting support for Brahman/i is CORNELL UNIVERSITY. The Media Sponsor is WVBR 93.5 FM.
ADITI BRENNAN KAPIL (Playwright) is a writer, actress, and director of Bulgarian and Indian descent. She grew up in Sweden, resides in Minneapolis, and her work is produced internationally. Representative work includes Love Person, a four-part love story in Sanskrit, ASL, and English, which received the Stavis Award in 2009. Agnes Under The Big Top, a tall tale was selected as a Distinguished New Play Project by the NEA and Arena Stage. Her Displaced Hindu Gods Trilogy plays have been produced across the US and the UK, with Brahman/i and The Chronicles of Kalki receiving an unprecedented double nomination for the James Tait Black Prize, University of Edinburgh, UK. Aditi has commissions with Yale Repertory, La Jolla Playhouse, South Coast Repertory, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and is the Playwright-in-Residence at Mixed Blood Theatre, an Associate at Park Square, a Core Writer at the Playwrights' Center, and a Resident Playwright at New Dramatists.
M. BEVIN O'GARA (Director) is the Producing Artistic Director at the Kitchen Theatre Company. As a director, Bevin's credits include The Who & The What by Ayad Akhtar, Milk Like Sugar by Kirsten Greenidge (Elliot Norton Award nomination for Best Production) and Becoming Cuba by MeLinda Lopez at the Huntington Theatre Company; The Bridges of Madison County, appropriate, A Future Perfect, Tribes (Elliot Norton and IRNE Awards for Best Production), and Clybourne Park with SpeakEasy Stage Company; Brahman/i, Chronicles of Kalki, You for Me for You, Love Person, and The Pain and the Itch with Company One Theatre; Phedre with Actors' Shakespeare Project; Fast Company with the Lyric Stage Company, Marjorie Prime with the Nora Theatre Company, How Soft the Lining and Translations with Bad Habit Productions, Two Wives in India and Gary with Boston Playwrights' Theatre, 2.5 Minute Ride with New Repertory Theatre, and Melancholy Play with Holland Productions.
AILA PECK (B) is making her debut at Kitchen Theatre Company. She is an actress in Chicago and a graduate of the School at Steppenwolf. Aila was most recently seen in Montana Shakespeare in the Parks this summer touring Macbeth (Lady Macbeth) and George Bernard Shaw's You Never Can Tell (Mrs. Clandon). Chicago credits include: Miss Bennet (Northlight Theatre): 1984 (Steppenwolf Theatre), The Royal Society of Antarctica (Gift Theatre); Brahman/i: A One Hijra Stand Up Show (About Face & Silk Road Rising); The Lark (Promethean Ensemble); Julius Caesar (Babes with Blades). Boston credits: The Who & The What (Huntington Theatre), Brahman/i: a One Hijra Stand up Show (CompanyOne); Yerma (Huntington Theatre), Dancing is a Sin (Huntington Theatre Egyptian Playwright Festival). Aila received her B.F.A. in Acting from University of North Carolina School of the Arts and is represented by Gray Talent.
THOM DUNN (J) is a writer, musician, and new media artist. As a performer, he was recently seen as The Bassist in the Boston premiere of We're Gonna Die by Young Jean Lee, and the lead guitarist in Boston's premiere all-male Lady Gaga cover band. His plays have been read or performed from New York to Hollywood to Valdez, Alaska, and he's also published fiction, comic books, and poetry with Quirk Books, Tor/Macmillan, Asimov's magazine, Crossed Genres publishing, and more. A graduate of the Clarion Writer's Workshop at the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination, Thom is currently a staff writer for The New York Times' Wirecutter and a regular contributor to Upworthy, Huffington Post, and more.
JUSTIN and Christopher Swader (Scenic Designers) are NYC-based scenic designers. Recent designs: A Raisin in the Sun (Two River Theatre), The Three Musketeers, Fit for a Queen, Macbeth, The Tempest, Dutchman (Classical Theatre of Harlem), The Boy Who Danced on Air (Abingdon Theatre Company), 3/Fifths (3LD), Campfire (Lincoln Center Education/Trusty Sidekick Theater Company), Heather Henson's Crane: On Earth, In Sky. Past collaborations with: Luna Stage, La MaMa, Ars Nova, Park Avenue Armory, Manhattan School of Music, National Black Theatre, The New School for Drama, HERE Arts Center, Shadowland Stages, Fairleigh Dickinson University, The Orchard Project, Emerson String Quartet, SpeakEasy Stage Company, ArtsEmerson, Company One. American Theatre Wing Henry Hewes Design Award nomination. Finalist in the 2017 World Stage Design Exhibition. Upcoming: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Speakeasy Stage Company, Boston), Annie (John W. Engeman Theater). Graduates of Ball State University.
ANNIE WIEGAND (Lighting Designer) is a freelance lighting designer who happens to be Deaf. Shows in New York City include Spring Awakening (Broadway, 2nd Assistant - Tony Nominee, Best Lighting Design), Movements of the Soul (Baruch), Square Peg, Round Hole (Tectonic Theatre Project, Associate). Boston: The Bridges of Madison County (Speakeasy Stage Company); The Who & The What (Huntington Theatre Company); Fast Company (Lyric Stage); The Trumpet of the Swan, The Taste of Sunrise (Wheelock Family Theatre); Phedre, Othello (Actors Shakespeare Project); Colossal, you for me for you, Love Person (Company One). Member, Wingspace Theatrical Design collective; Teaching Artist, Roundabout Theatre Company, Adjunct Professor, Theatre Arts Department, Gallaudet University in Washington, DC; and Producing Director, New York Deaf Theatre. anniewiegand.com
Bold, intimate, engaging... Kitchen Theatre Company (KTC), now beginning its 27th season, is downtown Ithaca's critically acclaimed and nationally recognized year-round professional theater company, specializing in regional and world premiere plays. KTC's intimate 99-seat theater is in a beautifully renovated, LEED-certified building in the West End neighborhood of downtown Ithaca, New York. KTC is the first not-for-profit recipient of the David R. Strong Memorial "Small Business of the Year" Award from the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce and receives public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency, and the Tompkins County Tourism Program. The Kitchen Theatre Company also receives general operating support from the Shubert Foundation.