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Christopher Shinn's AN OPENING IN TIME Premieres at Hartford Stage Tonight

Hartford Stage presents the world premiere of AN OPENING IN TIME by Pulitzer Prize finalist and Connecticut native Christopher Shinn, with direction by Oliver Butler of The Debate Society, from tonight, September 17, through October 11, 2015. AN OPENING IN TIME's central Connecticut setting is inspired by Shinn's hometown of Wethersfield.

A Pulitzer finalist for Dying City, presented at Hartford Stage in the 2008/09 season, Shinn is the winner of a 2005 OBIE in Playwriting and a Guggenheim Fellowship in Playwriting. He was shortlisted for the London Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Play and has been nominated for an Olivier Award for Most Promising Playwright and the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Playwright.

His plays also include Four, Now or Later, What Didn't Happen, and his Broadway adaptation of Hedda Gabler. Beginning October 1 at the Donmar Warehouse, the London premiere of his play Teddy Ferrara will open almost simultaneously with AN OPENING IN TIME at Hartford Stage.

In AN OPENING IN TIME, Anne, a retired schoolteacher, moves back to the suburban town in central Connecticut which she left years before. She finds a number of things have been changed. Dunkin' Donuts franchises are everywhere; the local high school is putting on a production of Rent; and a long-lost friendship suddenly appears in a new guise in this subtle and moving play about finding connections in a shifting world.

Hartford Stage Associate Artistic Director Elizabeth Williamson said, "I've been an admirer of Chris' work since first reading Four many years ago, and this is perhaps my favorite of his plays to date. His psychological acuity is always impressive, and never more so than in this play as he tracks the risks his characters are and are not capable of taking, in the hope of having a second chance -- at love, at reconciliation, perhaps at self-knowledge. AN OPENING IN TIME is set right here in Connecticut, which makes it doubly exciting to be premiering it at Hartford Stage." She also will serve as Dramaturg for the production.

The cast includes Kati Brazda (A Moon for the Misbegotten on Broadway); Molly Camp (The Heiress on Broadway); Bill Christ (Born Yesterday on Broadway); Patrick Clear (Noises Off on Broadway); Deborah Hedwall (OBIE Award winner for Sight Unseen); Mike Keller (Pinter's Old Times Off-Broadway); Karl Miller (Marie Antoinette Off-Broadway); and Brandon Smalls (Anthony and Cleopatra: Infinite Lives at the International Fringe Festival).

The most recent credits of Director Butler, a founder and co-Artistic Director of The Debate Society, include Will Eno's The Open House (OBIE Award for Best Direction, Lucille Lortel Award for Best Play); tick, tick . . . BOOM! for City Center Encores! Off-Center; Bad Jews at Long Wharf Theatre; and last month, Legacy at Williamstown Theatre Festival.

AN OPENING IN TIME's creative team also includes Set Designer Antje Ellermann (The Broken Heart at Theatre for a New Audience); Costume Designer Ilona Somogyi (Mark Twain's The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Noises Off!, and A Midsummer Night's Dream at Hartford Stage); Lighting Designer Russell Champa (In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play on Broadway); and Sound Designer Jane Shaw (Hamlet, Macbeth and La Dispute at Hartford Stage). Cole P. Bonenberger will be the stage manager.

Special Dates:
Previews begin at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, September 17
Press Night: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 23
Opens: 8 p.m. Friday, September 25
Closes: 2 p.m. Sunday, October 11

Subscriptions begin at $125 and include six shows: AN OPENING IN TIME; Rear Window, adapted for the stage by Keith Reddin, based on the story "Rear Window" by Cornell Woolrich, directed by Darko Tresnjak; The Body of an American by Dan O'Brien, directed by Jo Bonney; Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, directed by Tresnjak; Having Our Say: The Delaney Sisters' First 100 Years by Emily Mann, adapted from the book by Sarah L. Delaney and A. Elizabeth Delaney with Amy Hill Hearth; and Anastasia, A New Musical, book by Terrence McNally, music by Stephen Flaherty, lyrics by Lynn Ahern, inspired by the Twentieth Century Fox Motion Pictures, directed by Tresnjak.

Performances play Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun at 7:30 p.m.-Fri, Sat at 8 p.m.-Sat, Sun at 2 p.m.; Wed matinee at 2 p.m. on September 30 only. Weekly schedules vary. For details, visit www.hartfordstage.org. Tickets for all shows start at $25. For group discounts (10 or more), contact Theresa MacNaughton at 860-520-7114. For all other tickets, please call the Hartford Stage box office at 860-527-5151 or visit www.hartfordstage.org.

SPECIAL EVENTS:

LGBT Night Out, Thursday, September 24
Join us for a pre-show nosh and complimentary wine (plus drink specials at the bar) for our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patrons. Event begins at 6:15 p.m. before the 7:30 p.m. curtain. The reception is free with purchase of a ticket for that evening's performance. Special guests will be the Hartford Gay and Lesbian Health Collective.

Sunday Afternoon Discussion
September 27
Enjoy a lecture from artists and scholars connected with the production immediately following the 2 p.m. matinee. FREE

AfterWords Discussion
Tuesdays, September 29 & October 6 and Wednesday, September 30
Join members of the cast and our Artistic staff for a free discussion, immediately following select 7:30 p.m. performances on Tuesday or the 2 p.m. Wednesday matinee. FREE

Open Captioned Performances
October 4, 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m. performances
For patrons who are deaf or have hearing loss. FREE

Audio Described Performance
October 10, 2:00pm
For patrons who are blind or have low vision. FREE

About Hartford Stage - Now in its 51st year, Hartford Stage is one of the nation's leading resident theatres, known for producing innovative revivals of classics and provocative new plays and musicals, including 68 world and American premieres, as well as offering a distinguished education program, which reaches more than 20,000 students annually.

In 2011, Darko Tresnjak became only the fifth artistic director to lead Hartford Stage. Since then the theatre has presented the world premieres of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder on Broadway, winner of four 2014 Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Direction of a Musical by Darko; Quiara Alegría Hudes' Water by the Spoonful, winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama; Breath & Imagination by Daniel Beaty; and Big Dance Theatre's Man in a Case with Mikhail Baryshnikov.

Hartford Stage, under the leadership of Managing Director Michael Stotts, has earned many of the nation's most prestigious awards, including its first Tony Award in 1988 for Outstanding Regional Theatre. Other national honors include Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk, OBIE, and New York Critics Circle awards. Hartford Stage has produced nationally renowned titles, including the New York transfers of Enchanted April; The Orphans' Home Cycle; Resurrection (later retitled Through the Night); The Carpetbagger's Children; and Tea at Five.

Follow Hartford Stage on Facebook: www.facebook.com/hartfordstage, Twitter: www.twitter.com/hartfordstage and Instagram: www.instagram.com/hartfordstage.


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