Haven Theatre Presents KISS

Haven Theatre Presents KISS

Haven Theatre concludes its 2018-19 Season with the Chicago premiere of KISS by Guillermo Calderón, Chile's most acclaimed playwright-director. Monty Cole directs and performs in this bold theatrical experience that asks if art is a tool for empathy, what are the limits? Abhi Shrestha associate directs. KISS plays July 18 - August 18, 2019 at The Den Theatre's Janet Bookspan Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago. Tickets are currently avaiable at haventheatrechicago.com. The press opening is Tuesday, July 23 at 8 pm.

KISS features Salar Ardebili, Monty Cole, Gloria Imseih Petrelli, Arti Ishak, Sami Ismat and Cassidy Slaughter-Mason.

Two couples meet for their weekly soap opera viewing party, but that standing double date quickly starts to feel like a soap opera itself when the friends unpack scandals, secrets and their heart-rending passions. Guillermo Calderón has written a bold and political theatrical experience that explodes the romantic drama and asks what it means to empathize with a culture and conflict that is not your own.

Comments Haven Artistic Director Ian Damont Martin, "Bringing this play to Chicago in this moment is particularly exciting as we all start to ask some new and difficult questions about our work, questions about story and perspective - questions about our role and responsibility as artists. Who gets to tell what story? Can we tell stories that are not our own? And what happens when impact doesn't necessarily line up with intent? What is learned in that space? These are the types of questions playwright Guillermo Calderón and director Monty Cole are asking in their respective work. We are glad to be facilitating some space to grapple with these questions which feel so necessary today. Haven is also pleased to welcome back some members of the Haven family, Monty Cole who directed Weird Kids in our inaugural Director's Haven, and Abhi Shrestha, who previously served as Haven's Literary Manager."

The production team for KISS includes William Boles (scenic design), Kotryna Hilko (costume design), Claire Chrzan (lighting design), Jeffrey Levin (sound design), Emily Boyd (props design), Liviu Pasare (projections designer), Marika Mashburn (casting director), Angela Salinas (production manager), Josh Prisching (technical director), Corbin Paulino (production stage manager) and Mitch Ward (stage manager).

Guillermo Calderón (Playwright) is US-based screenwriter, playwright and theater director originally from Santiago, Chile. His plays include Neva, Diciembre, Clase, Villa, Speech, Quake, Escuela, Kiss, Mateluna and Goldrausch. Calderón's productions have toured extensively through South America, North America, and Europe. He has been commissioned to write and direct by the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus, Theater Basel, HAU Hebbel am Ufer, the Royal Court Theater, Center Theater Group,and The Public Theater in New York City, where he also directed Neva. His co-written screenplay Violeta Went to Heaven won the World Cinema Jury Prize for Drama at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. He co-wrote The Club, directed by Pablo Larrain, winner of the Silver Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival 2015, and nominated for the Golden Globes in the Foreign Language category. The script won the Silver plaque at the Chicago International Film Festival. He wrote the script for Neruda, directed by Pablo Larraín, presented at the Quinzaine des Réalisateurs (The Director's Forthnight) during Cannes Film Festival 2016. He recently directed his play Villa in New York City, produced by The Play Company. His new play B was produced at the Royal Court Theater in September 2017.

Monty Cole (Director) is a director based out of Chicago and Los Angeles. Cole has directed for The Goodman Theatre, Victory Gardens Theater, American Theatre Company, Definition Theater Company/ALTA, The House Theatre of Chicago, the Chicago Theater Marathon, California Institute of the Arts and others. Cole directed the critically acclaimed and Jeff Award winning production of The Hairy Ape for Oracle Productions. Monty is working with collaborator and choreographer Breon Arzell on revitalizing In Dahomey, the first black written and performed Broadway musical from 1903 for the Center for New Performance. Next up, Cole will direct William Shakespeare's Hamlet at The Gift Theatre. Recently, he directed Kiss by Guillermo Calderon at the California Institute of the Arts where he is currently an MFA2 Directing candidate.

PHOTO CREDIT: (left to right) Monty Cole, Arti Ishak, Salar Ardebili and Cassidy Slaughter-Mason in a publicity image for Haven Theatre's Chicago premiere of KISS. Photo by Joe Mazza/Brave Lux.

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