ALABASTER Comes to Florida Rep's ArtStage Studio Theatre
Florida Repertory Theatre has announced the opening of "Alabaster" by Audrey Cefaly, as part of a 10-theatre National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere. Chosen from Florida Rep's 2018 PlayLab Festival of New Works, "Alabaster" plays in the ArtStage Studio Theatre Dec. 20, 2019 to Jan. 26, 2020 with four nearly sold-out previews Dec. 17-19."Florida Rep's is committed to developing new works and nurturing playwrights," said Artistic Director Greg Longenhagen, "and Audrey Cefaly's new play is one of the most exciting new works to cross my desk in a while. This play is both hopeful and heartbreaking and features some of your favorite Florida Rep ensemble members. We are honored to give this play its first of ten Rolling World Premiere productions and to welcome the playwright into the creative process. 'Alabaster' is not a play to miss this season." "Alabaster" is a darkly comic southern drama about love, art, and the power of women. This heart-wrenching story of a reclusive Alabama folk artist won the David Calicchio Emerging American Playwright Prize. After a tornado barrels through town leaving nothing but death and destruction, only June and her pet goat Weezy live to tell the tale. When a prominent photographer visits to take pictures of June's scars, both are forced to reconcile the pain of loss and recovery. This all-female drama explores the meaning and purpose of art and the struggle of the lost and tortured souls that seek to create it. "National New Play Network is delighted to be supporting this play through a record-breaking ten Rolling World Premiere productions in the 12 months following the opening in Fort Myers," said National New Play Network Executive Director, Nan Barnett. "Florida Rep led the creation of this partnership, and their advocacy for the play and playwright will be celebrated not only in Fort Myers and the other nine cities but also during the many other productions that we are sure will follow." "Alabaster" features ensemble members Rachel Burttram and Sara Morsey alongside Dana Brooke and Carolyn Messina, both making their Florida Rep debuts. Burttram returns to the ArtStage after her recent work filming "The Right Stuff" for National Geographic which airs in early 2020. Her recent Florida Rep credits include "Steel Magnolias," "Hay Fever," and "Disgraced," as well as the PlayLab reading of "Alabaster" in 2018. Morsey returns after recent appearances in "Steel Magnolias" and "Shear Madness." In addition to her work on stage in "Alabaster," is herself a folk artist, and will create over sixty pieces of original outsider art for the production. Her work will be on display at the Arts for ACT Gallery across the hall from the ArtStage Studio during January. Alabama native, Carolyn Messina makes her Florida Rep debut on the production but has a long history working with the playwright in many capacities. She's appeared in Cefaly's works before "Alabaster," and as a dramaturg she has collaborated with Cefaly on multiple projects, including "Alabaster." Dana Brooke is a New York actress making her Florida Rep debut in the production, and is he is a Company Member at B Street Theatre in Sacramento, where she appeared in the National New Play Network Showcase reading of the play in 2018. Florida Rep ensemble member and Associate Artistic Director, Jason Parrish, directs "Alabaster" after helming last season's "Steel Magnolias" and "Million Dollar Quartet." Parrish leads Florida Rep's annual PlayLab Festival and directed the National New Play Network Showcase reading of "Alabaster" last year. "Alabaster" features an expert creative team, including ensemble set designer Richard Crowell ("Fences"), costume designer Charlene Gross ("Tenderly: The Rosemary Clooney Musical"), lighting and projections designer Rob Siler ("Damascus"), sound designer Katie Lowe ("Damascus"), and stage manager Ruth Kramer (Florida Rep debut). "Alabaster" by Audrey Cefaly is generously sponsored by Emily Eason and media sponsor, Florida Weekly. "Alabaster" plays in the ArtStage Studio Theatre Dec. 20, 2019 to Jan 26, 2020 with discounted previews Dec. 17-19. Tickets start at $55/$49 for regular performances and $35/$29 for previews. Tickets are available online at www.FloridaRep.org and through the box office at 239-332-4488. "Alabaster" contains strong language and brief nudity. Subscriptions are also on sale now and offer the best seats at the most significant discount. Packages for 7 and 6 shows are now on sale and start as low as $174. The Five-Show Arcade Theatre Rush Pass is now on sale for $175 and offers the best available seats in the Historic Arcade Theatre 90-minutes before any performance. Subscriptions are available through the box office at 239-332-4488 or toll-free at 877-787-8053. Performances are Tuesday-Thursday at 7 PM, Friday and Saturday at 8 PM, and Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday at 2 PM. Box office hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 AM - 5 PM. Again this season, Florida Rep's parking lot will open 2 hours before each performance and offers guests FREE PARKING across the street from the Arcade Theatre. Florida Repertory Theatre performs in the Historic Arcade Theatre and the ArtStage Studio Theatre on Bay St. between Jackson & Hendry with limited free parking in the Fort Myers River District. Visit Florida Rep online at FloridaRep.org, and by following the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.