The Kitchen Theatre Company Presents Nina Raine's Award-Winning Play TRIBES
Next up at the Kitchen Theatre Company is Tribes by Nina Raine, an atypical family drama that examines the power of communication within the dynamics of a British hearing family with a deaf son. Performances of Tribes begin at the Kitchen Theatre Company in the Percy Browning Performance Space on June 2nd and run through June 23rd. Opening night is Thursday, June 6th.
Billy, born deaf into a fast-talking, academic family, was never taught sign language. Pushed by his parents to assimilate into the hearing world by reading lips, he has spent most of his life flying under the radar. But when a young woman introduces him to the Deaf community, Billy decides it is time his family learns to communicate with him on his terms. Told in spoken English and sign language, Tribes explores the danger of not listening and the plight of six characters trying to be heard in their own unique way.
"It is a play full of people who deeply, deeply love each other but have never fully listened to what the other has to say," says Director M. Bevin O'Gara, Producing Artistic Director of the Kitchen Theatre. O'Gara has previously directed the play at SpeakEasy Stage Company in Boston. "Argument equals love for this family of writers, academics, and creatives; the way in which they show their affection for one another is often through total verbal warfare. But in their many ways of arguing, the play unearths truths about the family, asking us, 'What does it mean to truly be heard?'"
Returning to Tribes from SpeakEasy Stage Company is Joey Caverly (Billy), who, like his character, grew up deaf in a hearing family. "The reality for a lot of deaf children is they are often taught to be ashamed of learning and appreciating their own language," says Caverly. "Tribes shows Billy, a deaf man, on a journey of change and appreciation for a culture he'd been missing out on his whole life."
Tribes will feature Kitchen Theatre Company favorite, Karl Gregory, in the role of Daniel, Billy's older brother. Gregory talks about the family in the play as "...the love that lasts. It's part of their protection. If they don't let each other leave, they won't have to face the fear of the world beyond what they know. It's all in their tribe." Gregory has recently been featured in KTC productions, Every Brilliant Thing, Hand to God, Buyer & Cellar, and Peter and the Starcatcher.
Joining Caverly and Gregory are Jasmine Carmichael (Sylvia), Juliet Kimble (Ruth), Adrianne Krstansky (Beth), and Dean Robinson (Christopher). The play is directed by M. Bevin O'Gara. The director of Artistic Sign Language is Beth Applebaum. Scenic Design is by Cristina Todesco, Lighting Design is by Annie Weigand, Costume Design is by Lisa Boquist, Sound Design is by Arshan Gailus, and Projections Design is by Ari Herzig. Lizzie King-Hall will serve as dialect coach.The Technical Director is Brendan Komala and the Production Stage Manager is Jen Schilansky.
The Friday, June 21st performance of Tribes will be ASL-interpreted.