HANDS ON A HARDBODY, SLEEPING BEAUTY, OUTSIDE MULLINGAR and More Set for Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati's 2014-15 Season

HANDS ON A HARDBODY, SLEEPING BEAUTY, OUTSIDE MULLINGAR and More Set for Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati's 2014-15 Season

Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati (ETC) announces the 2014-2015 Season, which features an exciting selection of two outstanding regional premieres of critically acclaimed recent New York hits, a brand new romantic comedy, and a unique rock musical, along with the return of one of ETC's beloved holiday musicals.

Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati's twenty-ninth season opens with the musical Hands on A Hardbody (September 3-21, 2014.) Based on the 1997 documentary film of the same name, Hands on a Hardbody garnered three Tony Award nominations, and features a brilliant score from Amanda Green and Trey Anastasio (front man for the band Phish), along with a masterful story by Pulitzer Prize winner Doug Wright (I Am My Own Wife, Grey Gardens). For 10 hard-luck Texans, a new lease on life is so close they can touzch it. Under a scorching sun for days on end, armed with nothing but hope, humor and ambition, they'll fight to keep at least one hand on a brand-new truck in order to win it. Inspired by true events, and infused with a "fresh roots-rock vibe," this is the hilarious, hard-fought contest where only one winner can drive away with the American dream. Featuring a catchy combination of blues, rhythm and blues, rock and roll, and country songs, Hands on a Hardbody is a peek into the lives of everyday, ordinary Americans, struggling to survive against the backdrop of a broken and beaten working middle class.

The season continues with the regional premiere of An Iliad (October 15-November 2, 2014), which TimeOut NY declared as "pure theater: shocking, glorious, primal and deeply satisfying." Directed by Michael Evan Haney, this regional premiere is adapted from Homer and written by Lisa Peterson and Denis O'Hare. Translation is by Robert Fagles. With the lingering shadow of war in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria, this is a breathtakingly relevant retelling of the timeless class. The ancient thrilling tales of the Trojan War and the modern world collide in this captivating theatrical experience as we explore the psychology of passion and rage. Acclaimed Cincinnati actor Bruce Cromer will play the Greek classic's famous characters from Achilles and Hector to Agammemnon-as well as the beautiful Helen of Troy-as he shares the stage with only a virtuoso musician. This lean, muscular, tour-de-force performance is filled with wit and wisdom that conjures the rage of the gods as it delves deep into mankind's unshakeable attraction to violence, destruction, and chaos.

For the holidays, ETC features the return of Sleeping Beauty (December 3, 2014-January 4, 2015). Romance, comedy, action, rock n' roll, and opera-this magical, musical version of Sleeping Beauty has it all! Meet Briar Rose, her overprotective parents, three wacky fairies (and a wicked one), and a dragon with an attitude as ETC's contemporary twist on the classic tale returns to our stage. From the creators of Cinderella and Snow White, this enchanted and memorable musical will delight audiences of all ages this holiday season.

For winter 2015, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati will present the regional premiere of The Other Place (January 28-February 15, 2015) by Sharr White. Described by The New York Times as "a cagy, emotionally resonant drama packed with plot twists," this powerfully engaging piece is also a haunting and gripping psychological thriller.

Dr. Juliana Smithton has it all: career, family, fame. But just as her research leads to a potential breakthrough, her life takes a disorienting turn and soon nothing is as it seems. During a lecture to colleagues at an exclusive beach resort, she glimpses an enigmatic young woman in a yellow bikini amidst the crowd of business suits. Piece by piece, a 10-year mystery unravels as she sifts through disjointed facts, half truths, and cloudy memories that lead her back to a Cape Cod cottage where a revelation awaits.

In the spring, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati will present an exciting regional premiere to be announced. Scheduled dates for this production are March 18-April 5, 2015.

To conclude its 2014-2015 season, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati will present the regional premiere of Outside Mullingar (May 6-24, 2015) directed by Ed Stern, and featuring Cincinnati veteran actors Dale Hodges and Joneal Joplin as the story's septuagenarian parental figures. This is a new romantic comedy from the Pulitzer-, Oscar-, and Tony Award-winner John Patrick Shanley, writer of Doubt and Moonstruck. Anthony and Rosemary are two introverted misfits straddling 40. Anthony has spent his entire life on a cattle farm in rural Ireland, a state of affairs that-due to his painful shyness-suits him well. Rosemary lives right next door, hopelessly pining for him as the years slip away. With Anthony's father threatening to disinherit him and a land feud simmering between their families, Rosemary fears romantic catastrophe. This compassionate and delightful new work is heartbreaking, funny as hell, and how reminds us that it's never too late to take a chance on love.

Subscriptions: Subscriptions to the 2014-2015 Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati season are available now in a variety of packages. New this season is the addition of a 5-show Tuesday evening Preview Subscription for just $125 (package excludes holiday production). Regular subscription prices are $168-$180 for seniors; adult subscriptions range from $180 to $198. The popular FlexPass is $202, which includes six flexible tickets to use for any show and in any combination.

Student Subscriptions: The 2014-2015 season will continue to offer a robust suite of affordable ticket and program options designed specifically for local area teens and students to experience professional theatre. This includes a $120 Student Subscription available for any performance and which provides a seat for each of the six productions during the season. Additionally, ETC will continue its $90 Teen Scene Subscription, a deeply discounted subscription option exclusively for students ages 13-19 (available select dates only).

All single tickets for the 2014-2015 Season go on sale to the general public on Monday, August 4, 2014. Subscribers, however, may start making exchanges, purchase additional tickets, or reserve their FlexPass dates during Subscriber Only Days, July 28-August 1, 2014.

For more information, visit www.ensemblecincinnati.org.

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