3 Plays Come to The Carrie Hamilton Theatre Of Pasadena Playhouse This Fall!

Tickets on sale today for three plays in the Carrie Hamilton Theatre of The Pasadena Playhouse, the State Theater of California, this fall. The Los Angeles premiere of Bess Wohl's darkly comic American Hero, a Pasadena Playhouse Guest Production from IAMA Theatre Company, directed by James Eckhouse performs September 15 to October 31 (press opening September 21). Next, The USC School of Dramatic Arts and Pasadena Playhouse continue their exciting partnership by presenting two productions for the School's MFA in Acting program at the Carrie Hamilton Theatre: Detroit 67 by Dominique Morisseau, directed by Gregg T. Daniel November 8-10, and The Receptionist by Adam Bock, directed by Andi Chapman November 16-17.

"As part of the Playhouse's commitment to being a center for all types of theater and theater artists, we're pleased to welcome the acclaimed IAMA Theater Company and the USC School of Dramatic Arts into our theater this fall with three exciting new productions," said Danny Feldman, Producing Artistic Director. "Not only are we excited about partnering with one of our top local ensemble companies, but we're also passionate about the opportunity to expand our partnership with the USC School of Dramatic Arts and their extraordinary students, all while giving our members and community even more theater to enjoy."

American Hero
IAMA Theatre Company opens its 2018-19 season with this darkly comic celebration of the power of teamwork and unity to overcome adversity. A franchise-owned sandwich shop becomes a microcosm of recession-era America in Bess Wohl's sharply comedic commentary on the struggles and perseverance of the American working class. When a trio of disparate and desperate "sandwich artists" at the local mall - an awkward young misfit (Laura Mann), a single mom (Anna Lamadrid) and a downsized refugee from corporate banking (Graham Outerbridge) - find themselves left to their own devices by overwhelmed franchisee Bob (Rodney To), they are forced into an unlikely alliance in order to keep the store, and themselves, afloat.??

"This gem of a play - a dark, slightly absurdist tale about the plight of the American worker - has become even more powerfully relevant today than when it was written in 2014," notes Eckhouse. "It's not only wickedly funny, but deeply moving as well. We witness these three sandwich 'artists' fighting for their well-being, their dignity, their souls in the face of a soul-less corporate bureaucracy. The cast is amazing, I'm thrilled to be the director of this production."??

The creative team for American Hero includes set designer Justin Huen, lighting designer Josh Epstein, composer and sound designer Peter Bayne, costume designer Melissa Trn and prop master Michael O'Hara. Jay Marcus produces, with associate producer Lexi Sloan, for IAMA Theatre Company.??

Bess Wohl's plays include Small Mouth Sounds (Top ten of 2015 in The New York Times, The Guardian, New York Post and others); Barcelona; Touched; In; Cats Talk Back; the original musical Pretty Filthy, in collaboration with Michael Friedman and The Civilians (Lucille Lortel and Drama Desk nominations for Outstanding Musical). Her work has been produced or developed at Second Stage, Ars Nova, the Williamstown Theatre Festival, Geffen Playhouse, People's Light and Theatre Company, the Contemporary American Theater Festival, Vineyard Arts Project, the Pioneer Theatre, Pittsburgh Public Theater, Northlight Theater, TheaterWorks New Works Festival, Ojai Playwright's Conference, Cape Cod Theatre Project, PlayPenn and the New York International Fringe Festival (Award for Best Overall Production).

In 2015, Bess won the Sam Norkin special Drama Desk Award for "establishing herself as an important voice in New York Theater, and having a breakthrough year." Other awards and honors include the Athena Award for her screenplay, Virginia; a MacDowell Fellowship; and inclusion on Hollywood's Black List of Best Screenplays. She is an associate artist with The Civilians, an alumna of Ars Nova's Play Group, and the recipient of new play commissions from Manhattan Theatre Club, Hartford Stage and Lincoln Center. Bess also writes for film and television, and has developed projects for HBO, ABC, USA, Disney, Paramount and others. She is a graduate of Harvard and the Yale School of Drama.??

James Eckhouse directed IAMA Theatre Company member Jamie Wollrab in Tryptich Theatre's production of Nocturne, and the world premiere of IAMA member Keliher Walsh's The Year of the Rabbit. As co-artistic director of EST/LA from 1999 to 2001, he oversaw the development of over 20 new plays. He has directed productions at Atwater Village Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse, the Matrix, the Odyssey, the Lost Studio and the Electric Lodge. Television directing credits include episodes of ABC's award winning series, Once and Again and Beverly Hills 90210. James won a CINE Golden Eagle award for his documentary, Protecting the Possibilities. His 35-year career as an actor includes performances on and off-Broadway, and at many of the country's regional theaters, as well as starring roles in over 50 television series and films. Recently he starred in IAMA Theatre Company's critically acclaimed production of Redline and opposite Bryan Cranston in the Tony Award-winning Broadway hit, All The Way. He stars in the upcoming HBO web series High and Mighty as arch villain Doctor Knotts. James is best known to TV audiences as "Jim Walsh" on FOX's original series, Beverly Hills 90210. He is a proud member of IAMA Theatre Company.??Designated by Playbill as "one of 20 regional houses every theater lover must know,"

IAMA Theatre Company is a Los Angeles-based ensemble of artists committed to invigorating live performance for a streaming generation. Through cutting-edge, cool and hyper-modern stories, IAMA is invested in the immediacy of production and strives to bring audiences out of their personal space and into a shared experience. Plays generated at IAMA have traveled to off-Broadway, Second Stage and the Roundabout Underground, and have been performed regionally and internationally. IAMA members have been featured in numerous critically acclaimed TV shows and films as well as in a vast array of theater and live performances all over the country - currently, IAMA co-artistic director Katie Lowes and her husband, IAMA marketing director Adam Shapiro, are appearing on Broadway in Waitress. In 2014, IAMA earned the Ovation Award for Outstanding Play in an Intimate Theatre for its Los Angeles premiere of The Recommendation. In 2017, TV producer and creator Shonda Rhimes announced that she would become IAMA's first-ever "Patron of the Arts" with a generous endowment from the Rhimes Family Foundation. ?

American Hero opens on Friday, Sept. 21 at 8:30 p.m., with performances thereafter on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 7 p.m. through Oct. 21. Four preview performances take place on Saturday, Sept. 15 at 8 p.m.; Sunday, Sept. 16 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and Thursday, Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. All tickets are $30, except Sept. 21 (opening night) for which tickets are $40 and include a post performance reception, and previews, which are $20. For reservations and information, call 323-380-8843 or go to www.iamatheatre.com.

The USC School of Dramatic Arts MFA in Acting Program

The USC School of Dramatic Arts and Pasadena Playhouse continue their exciting partnership by presenting two productions for the School's MFA in Acting program at the Carrie Hamilton Theatre. The partnership is a continuation of the theatre's 100-year commitment to cultivating artists and provides the students the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships at a working professional theatre.

Detroit 67

In the summer of 1967, the songs of Motown are breaking records and breaking barriers. Chelle and her brother, Lank, are running an unlicensed after-hours bar in their Detroit basement - risky business - especially during a brutal police crackdown that has set off riots throughout the city. When Lank offers refuge to an injured white woman, tensions erupt in their home and their city, and they find themselves caught in the middle of the '67 riots.

Detroit 67 plays Thursday, Nov. 8 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 9 at 7:30p.m., and Saturday Nov. 10 at 2:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. All tickets are $20, with $10 tickets available for USC Students, faculty and staff, as well as Playhouse members.

The Receptionist

It's the start of a typical day in the Northeast Office and Beverly deals effortlessly with ringing phones and her colleague's romantic troubles. But when a charming rep from the Central Office makes an appearance, the friendly routine is disrupted. As the true nature of the company's business becomes apparent, The Receptionist raises disquieting, provocative questions about the consequences of complicity with evil.

The Receptionist plays Thursday, Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 16 at 7:30p.m. and Saturday Nov. 17 at 2:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. All tickets are $20, with $10 tickets available for USC Students, faculty and staff, as well as Playhouse members.

The Carrie Hamilton Theatre at The Pasadena Playhouse is located at 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena CA 91101.

For more information on all productions at Pasadena Playhouse visit PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

The Pasadena Playhouse is a place where people have gathered for 100 years to experience bold and important theater. It is one of the most prolific theaters in American history with a legacy of profound theatrical impact and courageous new work. In 1937, the Playhouse was officially recognized as the State Theater of California for its contribution and commitment to the dramatic arts. Today it continues that tradition of excellence under the helm of producing artistic director Danny Feldman. Dedicated to enriching lives through theater, community programs and learning initiatives, Pasadena Playhouse is a living force in the community.

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