Furious Theatre Company Closes the Curtain on MEN OF TORTUGA, 3/21

Furious Theatre Company will close the first show of its seventh season, the West Coast Premiere of MEN OF TORTUGA, written by Jason Wells and directed by Alexis Chamow, on March 21st.

Three power-brokers scheme with a weapons specialist to assassinate a despised opponent...Too bad they're all such incompetents. The bungling only gets worse as Maxwell, the senior power-broker, takes a young idealist under his wing. Suddenly his long-dormant conscience begins to reawaken and he must decide whether the ends justify their means. This comedic thriller discloses a sharp parable that takes a crack at the nastiness of covert governmental and corporate operations.

Furious co-artistic director Brad Price says the play will challenge audiences while making them laugh, " 'Tortuga' promises to be a comic thrill-ride that will keep the audience guessing and talking long after it's over," Price said. "Upon reading it a few years ago, we knew immediately we had to produce it, and it feels even more timely today than when we first read it. Wells' play asks questions without always providing answers and demands the very best in ensemble acting. We're excited to have a new director, Alexis Chamow, working with our company and an impressive group of five L.A. Theatre veterans bringing Wells' brilliant and incisive play to the Furious stage."

JASON WELLS is a Chicago-based actor with numerous stage, film and television credits. His first screenplay, From Missouri, was accepted for development by the New Harmony Project. His first play, Men of Tortuga, was produced at Steppenwolf's First Look Repertory in 2005, and subsequently at Asolo Rep in Sarasota, Florida where his most recent play, Perfect Mendacity received its World Premiere in 2009.

ALEXIS CHAMOW is Artistic Associate/Director of Education at Pasadena Playhouse. Her directing credits in new work, adaptations and ensemble generated material include: Air Guitar High by TCG Fellow Laura Schellhardt (workshop reading, Pasadena Playhouse); Sig Gotta Do by Jerome Fellow Megan Gogerty (workshop reading, Pasadena Playhouse); Eggs by Anne-Giselle Spiegler (workshop reading, Syzygy Theatre); Somewhere in Yellowstone by Jessica Smith (workshop reading, Syzygy Theatre); Dinner 101 by Kate Rigg (Center Theatre Group PLAY program); Pandas by Megan Gogerty (workshop reading, Syzygy Theatre); Love Jerry by Megan Gogerty (Oscar Brockett Theatre, Austin Critic's Table Nomination, Best Director - Musical); These Shining Lives, Weighing the World (adapted from Jeanette Winterson's novel, Weight), The K of D, The Trial (adapted from Franz Kafka's novel and Stephen Berkoff's performance translation), Our Country's Good (National High School Institute - Cherub program); The Troublesome Olives; Everyman; Bisclavret (Seattle Children's Theatre); The Locker (Seattle's Bathhouse Theatre); Flights of Fantasy (Assistant Director, Seattle Repertory Theatre); A Life So Far; A River Runs Through It; Christmas Panto (Ustinov Studio, Theatre Royal, Bath, England); alumni, Lincoln Center Director's Lab & Director's Lab West.

ABOUT THE CAST AND THE DESIGN TEAM

The cast of MEN OF TORTUGA will feature: Robert Pescovitz (Canned Peaches in Syrup, The God Botherers), Dana Kelly, Jr. (Grace, Canned Peaches in Syrup), William Salyers
(Battle Hymn, The Sequence), Alan Brooks (Twelfth Night at A Noise Within, Great Day in the Morning) and Michael Matthys (A Touch of the Poet, An Enemy of the People at the Ahmanson).

MEN OF TORTUGA has assembled an award-winning design team. The Scenic Design is by Sara Ryung Clement (A Noise Within, South Coast Rep). The Lighting Design is by Furious Ensemble member Christie Wright (Grace, The Pain and the Itch). The Sound Design is by Furious Ensemble member Doug Newell (US Drag, The Pain and the Itch). The Costume Design is by Leah Piehl (The Theatre @ Boston Court, Intiman Theatre). Props Design is by Shannon Dedman (Pasadena Playhouse, A Noise Within). The Stage Manager is Laura Perez.

The critically-acclaimed Furious Theatre Company are artists in residence at the Pasadena Playhouse committed to edgy, innovative and original works. The company debuted in April 2002 after they were generously granted the use of a 9,000 square foot section of Armory Northwest, a former plastics factory. The company converted the raw warehouse into an alternative performance space. Risers were constructed, the lighting grid hung and stage curtains built, all by the ensemble. In that converted warehouse, they rapidly produced five plays in 12 months. These productions earned 6 NAACP Theatre Award nominations, two LA Weekly Award nominations and numerous critics' picks from the Los Angeles media. The company also received the Pasadena Arts Council's Gold Crown Award and The Debut Award from Back Stage West. In September 2003, the City of Pasadena reclaimed the Armory Northwest and Furious needed to move. After a 13-month search, the Pasadena Playhouse granted Furious a residency at its Balcony Theatre (later renamed the Carrie Hamilton Theatre), The Playhouse's 99-seat second stage.

Since its 2004 debut at The Playhouse, Furious Theatre Company has produced 17 premieres, including the World Premieres of Alex Jones' Canned Peaches in Syrup and Matt Pelfrey's An Impending Rupture of the Belly (4 LA Weekly Award nominations, Garland Award) as well as Los Angeles Premieres of Neil LaBute's The Shape of Things, Yussef El Guindi's Back of the Throat (LA Weekly Award Winner: Best Playwright), Craig Wright's Grace (Los Angeles Drama Critic's Circle Award Recipient: Best Production, Best Direction, Best Writing), Gina Gionfriddo's US Drag (7 LA Weekly Award Nominations), Peter Sinn Nachtrieb's Hunter Gatherers (1 LADCC Award Nom) and Bruce Norris' The Pain and the Itch (3 LADCC Award Noms). Furious Theatre Company is led by co-founders and Artistic Council members: Sara Hennessy, Shawn Lee, Vonessa Martin, Eric Pargac, Brad Price and Dámaso Rodriguez. Fellow ensemble members include Nick Cernoch, Katie Davies, Doug Newell, Megan Goodchild, Matt Pelfrey Dana Kelly, Jr., Robert Pescovitz, Christie Wright, James C. Leary, Richard Hilton and Melissa Teoh. For more info visit www.furioustheatre.org.



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