THE NEW COLOSSUS Extended At The Actors' Gang

THE NEW COLOSSUS Extended At The Actors' GangThe Actors' Gang has announced an extension of "The New Colossus" due to strong ticket sales. The production will now continue through May 12 at The Actors' Gang Theater. Directed by Tim Robbins and written The Actors' Gang ensemble and The Actors' Gang's Artistic Director, Tim Robbins. The world premiere of The New Colossus began previews on February 8 and opened on February 17, 2018. Six new performances have been added on Saturday nights at 8:00pm - April 7, 14, 21, 28, May 5, and closing night, May 12.

In The New Colossus, The Actors' Gang members tell their ancestors' stories, their struggles and their journeys from oppression to freedom. The play celebrates the courage and great character of the refugees who came to this country throughout the last 300 years. The ensemble of twelve reflects the great diversity that has defined who we are as a nation; The New Colossus is a celebration of our diversity.

Set somewhere between the 19th century and now, the play tells the story of forced migration and the constant struggle for survival and dignity in an uncertain and hostile environment. The members of The Acting Company are from different parts of the world; they tell their stories, each in a different language, and each in different dress.

Director Tim Robbins said, "It's so fascinating seeing the audience reaction to The New Colossus, learning where our audience comes from and hearing so many stories of their families journeys to the United States for a safer life. Every evening, after the performances, we hear moving testimony from the audience, from a woman born in a Displaced Persons Camp for holocaust survivors in Norway to young people who spent the past 4-5 years in Refugee Camps, before receiving asylum in the US. The New Colossus and the power of the true stories being told in this piece bring people together in such a inspiring way. It is a beautiful surprise to all of us and we want to extend our run to keep hearing these testimonies and telling the story of our ancestors' courage and resilient humanity."

The New Colossus shares a title with the sonnet written by poet Emma Lazarus in 1883 for an exhibit to raise funds for the pedestal for the Statue of Liberty, which opened in 1886. Even though the Statue of Liberty was not conceived as a symbol of immigration, Lazarus' "The New Colossus" reinvented the statue's purpose, turning Liberty into a welcoming mother, a symbol of hope to the outcasts and oppressed of the world.

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

At the end of each performance the actors will engage the audience and ask them to share either their experience of immigration or their family's experience. On several of our workshop performances of this piece we found people from all over the world in our audience; a true representation of the character and make up of this country we share.

The 2017/18 Actors' Gang season is about grifters, dreamers, fighters, cowards, con men and saints, our ancestors, their poetry, our story, their dance, our winter solstice and a spring of brand newly hatched plays developed, nurtured, and incubated at The Actors' Gang Theater.

General tickets are available for $34,99. Seniors may purchase $30.00 tickets and young adults under 30 years of age and full-time students may purchase tickets for $20.00. Thursday evenings are "Pay-What-You-Can." For tickets, please call 310-838-4264 or visit www.theactorsgang.com to purchase tickets online or to view the complete Season of Thugs, Outcasts and Heavenly Myths schedule. The Actors' Gang Theatre is located at The Ivy Substation at 9070 Venice Blvd, Culver City, CA, 90232.

The New Colossus has its beginnings in the previous 2017 Refugee Project Workshop Production, in which actors from The Actors' Gang told their own stories, the story of their ancestors - where they came from, why they had to leave, and where they arrived and settled.

"The New Colossus" by Emma Lazarus
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Tim Robbins (Director)

For the past 36 years, Tim Robbins has served as Artistic Director for The Actors' Gang, a theater company formed in 1982 that has over 150 productions and more than 100 awards to their credit. Past productions with The Actors' Gang include: As Writer/Director - Harlequino On to Freedom (2017), Break the Whip (2010-11), Embedded (2003-4), Mayhem, the Invasion (1992), Carnage, A Comedy (1988-89), Violence, The Misadventures of Spike Spangle Farmer (1987) and Alagazam (1986). As Director -A Midsummer Night's Dream (2012-16), Orwells' 1984 (2006-16), Mephisto (2001), The Good Woman of Setzuan (1991), Methusalem, the Eternal Bourgeois (1985), A Midsummer Night's Dream (1984), Ubu the King (1982); In addition to producing live theater throughout the year, The Actors' Gang provides arts education to thousands of Elementary, Middle and High School students working in 12 LA USD schools and in underserved communities in the L.A. area. Since 2006, The Actors' Gang's groundbreaking Prison Project provides theatrical workshops to incarcerated men and women in 11 California prisons. In 2014, Robbins and Prison Project director Sabra Williams were instrumental in reinstating 6 million dollars into the California State budget for Arts in Corrections.

As Actor, credits include the current HBO series Here and Now, Marjorie Prime, The Brink, Mystic River, The Shawshank Redemption, The Player, Bull Durham and Jacob's Ladder and as a Writer/Director, Dead Man Walking, Cradle Will Rock and Bob Roberts. Robbins has won the Academy Award, Golden Globe, Sag Award + Prix d'Interprétation masculine at Cannes and French Legion.

Music by David Robbins and Mikala Schmitz; projection design by Cihan Sahin; lighting design by Jason Ryan Lovett; costume design by the cast; musical direction by David Robbins; stage manager is Danielle Powell; assistant stage manager is James Bane.

ABOUT THE Actors' Gang

Over the past 37 years, The Actors' Gang has produced over 200 plays in Los Angeles, in forty-five US states, and on five continents. The company was founded in 1981 by a group of young artists looking to build a theatre that would present relevant and vibrantly entertaining plays. Guided by Founding Artistic Director, Tim Robbins, the company provides a supportive environment for a diverse ensemble of artists and the development of their groundbreaking work.

The theater company has presented the work of innovative theater artists including Georges Bigot, Simon Abkarian, Charles Mee, David Schweizer, Bill Rauch and the Cornerstone Theatre Company, Tracy Young, Roger Guenver Smith, Eric Bogosian, Oskar Eustis, Danny Hoch, Beth Milles, Brian Kulick, Stefan Haves, Namaste Theater Company, Culture Clash, Jason Reed, Michael Schlitt and Tenacious D.

The Actors' Gang ensemble has included accomplished actors such as Jack Black, John Cusack, John C. Reilly, Helen Hunt, Kate Walsh, Fisher Stevens, Jeremy Piven, Ebbe Roe Smith, Jon Favreau, Brent Hinkley, Kate Mulligan, Lee Arenberg, Kyle Gass and Tim Robbins.

Guest artists that have appeared on The Actors' Gang stage include: Jackson Browne, Sarah Silverman, Ben Gibbard, John Doe, Tom Morello, Jenny Lewis, Wayne Kramer, Paul Provenza, Zooey Deschanel, Serj Tankian, David Crosby, Pink, Felicity Huffman, Jill Sobule, William H. Macy, Phillip Baker Hall, Jeanne Tripplehorn, T.C. Boyle. and the late, beloved, Gore Vidal.

Recent touring productions include Harlequino: On to Freedom, A Midsummer Night's Dream, George Orwell's 1984, The Exonerated, Tartuffe, Embedded, The Trial of the Catonsville Nine and The Guys. Over the last thirty years The Actors' Gang has toured the U.S. in forty-five states and on five continents, performing across the world from London to Milan, Bucharest, Athens, Madrid, Barcelona, Bogota, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Buenos Aires.

With our productions, education, outreach programs and tours we strive to strengthen communities in a way that only the medium of theater can. We produce plays that contribute to the ongoing dialogue about our society and culture, while never forgetting that theaters primary purpose is to entertain.



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