Phoenix Theatre Announces the Indiana Premiere of THE GOLEM OF HAVANA

Phoenix Theatre of Indianapolis announces the Indiana premiere of The Golem of Havana, which opens June 22, 2017 on the Livia and Steve Russell Stage. This production runs through July 16, 2017, with Bryan Fonseca serving as director.

It's the brink of the Cuban Revolution, and Rebecca, a young Jewish girl and aspiring artist, uses her illustrations to envision a champion for Cuba. Drawn from the stories of her homeland in Hungary, her artwork finds hope in the Golem, a legendary protector of the Jewish people.

Her family, the Frankels, has only just begun to find their first fragile grasp on prosperity and is now faced with a difficult decision: holding onto their security or protecting an injured revolutionary and friend.

Blending the music and traditions of two worlds, The Golem of Havana weaves a story of hope, family, and sacrifice.

For 34 years, Bryan Fonseca has served as the Producing Director of the Phoenix Theatre. He previously worked in Indianapolis as the Producing Director of the Broad Ripple Playhouse and the assistant to the Producing Director at the Civic Theatre of Indianapolis. He was a founder and first Artistic Director of The Company Players in his hometown of Gary, Indiana. Bryan has directed for the MFA Playwrights Workshop at the Kennedy Center, The Human Race Theatre, Indiana University, Ball State University, and the Civic Theatre of Indianapolis. Over the years, he has transferred six Phoenix shows to Chicago. Bryan has received an Achievement and Service award from the Indiana Theatre Association, two Artist Fellowship awards from the Indiana State Arts Commission and two Creative Renewal Fellowships from the Arts Council of Indianapolis/Lilly Endowment. He is the first recipient of the Transformational Impact Fellowship from the Arts Council of Indianapolis, with the generous funding support of Lilly Endowment Inc. In addition to his work at the Phoenix, he is an adjunct professor at IUPUI and lectures frequently at Butler University and the University of Indianapolis. He has served on the board of the National New Play Network and developed and served as the first president of the League of Indianapolis Theaters.

Michel Hausmann is a Venezuelan-born theater director, producer and writer. He is the co-founder and Artistic Director of Miami New Drama, Michel was the bookwriter and director of The Golem Of Havana, a critically-acclaimed original musical. The show opened at LaMama in August of 2013 and received its world premiere at Barrington Stage Company in July of 2014. It had a sold out, extended run at the Colony Theatre with Miami New Drama. Hausmann's Off Broadway credits include the New York Premiere of Vassily Sigarev's Black Milk at East 13th Theater and the New York premiere of The Color Of Desire, by Pulitzer Prize winning author Nilo Cruz. In Caracas he was the Artistic Director of Palo De Agua, a leading Venezuelan theater company. There he directed the world premiere of Los Navegaos, renowned Venezuelan playwright Isaac Chocrón's last play, as well as critically-acclaimed productions of Fiddler on the Roof, Jesus Christ Superstar and The Producers with an audience of 170,000 spectators. Along with Moisés Kaufman, he co-directed the Venezuelan premiere of Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde.

Salomon Lerner has an M.F.A. from NYU's Tisch Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. He studied Film Scoring at the Berklee College of Music and Composing at the Ars Nova School of Music (Caracas). In New York, he has worked as composer, orchestrator and music director for off-Broadway shows. His original compositions have been performed at various renowned venues including La Mama's Ellen Stewart Theater (New York) and Barrington Stage Company (Pitttsfield, MA) and the Colony Theatre (Miami Beach, FL). He also founded the VirtualStudio.NYC which connects musicians and engineers around the world to produce top-quality recordings.
Before moving to New York, he worked professionally as a music director/conductor, a composer for film, TV, and theatre, and a record producer and arranger in his native Venezuela.

Len Schiff's musical Signs of Life (music by Joel Derfner, book by Peter Ullian) opened off-Broadway in 2010 at the Marjorie S. Deane Theater and went on to a run at Chicago's Victory Gardens Theater. The Golem of Havana (2015 Independent Reviewers of New England Nomination, Best New Play; music by Salomon Lerner, book by Michel Hausmann) premiered at Barrington Stage's New Musicals Lab, later enjoying a record-breaking run in Miami; it will next play the Phoenix Theater in Indianapolis. Other works include the musicals Æthernity (music: Chris Sidorfsky) Zach In Progress (music: Georgia Stitt) and the one act opera Usher Falling (music: Randall Eng). Current projects include a rock biography of Daniel Ellsberg with composer David Mallamud, an adaptation of the Ellen Kushner novel Swordspoint with Joel Derfner and Peter Ullian, and an adaptation of G.K. Chesterton's The Man Who Was Thursday with Chris Sidorfsky and Austin Grossman.

The cast of The Golem of Havana features Lydia Burke as Rebecca, Wheeler Castaneda as Sanchez, Lori Ecker as Yutka, Ray Hutchins as Teo, Rob Johansen as Ensemble, Carlos Maldonado as Arturo, Paul Nicely as Laszlo and Batista, Betsy Norton as Olga, Eric J. Olson as Pinchas, and Dena Toler as Maria.

Tickets for The Golem of Havana are on sale now. Tickets are $30.00 per person on Thursdays, and Sundays, $35.00 per person on Fridays and Saturdays, and $22.00 for anyone 21 & under. During CheapSeats Weekend, June 22-25, all tickets are $22. Tickets for The Golem of Havana may be purchased by calling the box office at 317-635-7529 or visiting Curtain times for the production are: Thursdays at 7 pm, Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 8 pm, and Sundays at 2 pm.

The Phoenix Theatre is Indiana's only professional contemporary theatre, and has presented productions to challenge and entertain the Indianapolis community for over 33 years. An Equity house, the Phoenix presents the Midwest and Indiana premieres of many popular Broadway and Off-Broadway plays, and has presented approximately 100 world premieres. The Phoenix operates the 130-seat proscenium Livia and Steve Russell Stage as well as the 75-seat cabaret-style black box Frank and Katrina Basile Stage. Both venues are housed along with administrative offices in a renovated 1907 church in downtown Indianapolis' historic Chatham Arch neighborhood, part of the Mass Ave Arts and Culture District. The Phoenix Theatre is a founding member of the National New Play Network and the League of Indianapolis Theatres, and is supported by the Indiana Arts Commission, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, and the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as local corporate and foundation funders and more than 400 individual donors.

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