Two Female Playwrights Open New Works At Skylight Theatre Company

Two Female Playwrights Open New Works At Skylight Theatre Company

Following the extended run of Rotterdam (5 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle award nominations) the Skylight Theatre Company is offering two World Premiere plays by female playwrights from Los Angeles, revealing the strength and resilience of women in the darkest of circumstances. The Madres by Stephanie Alison Walker opens March 10 and Hostage by Michelle Kholos Brooks opens May 19, 2018.

Skylight will take the lead on staging The Madres, a NNPN Rolling World Premiere, with Los Angeles the first city to offer a professional production of the work. Subsequent productions will be at Teatro Vista in Chicago, Moxie Theatre in San Diego, and with Shrewd Productions in Austin, Texas. The Madres was a finalist for the O'Neill Playwrights Conference, the CTG/Humanitas Playwriting Prize and the Saroyan/Paul Playwriting Prize for Human Rights. The Madres hits Los Angeles with an impressive cache of accolades, including winning the Ashland New Plays Festival and the Boulder Ensemble Theater Company's Generations Contest.

In a time of resistance what will you do? Buenos Aires, Argentina, and people are disappearing off the streets but no one is talking about it. The "Dirty War" waged by the military Junta against its own people is in full swing. Three generations of women in a single family face state terrorism. The Mothers of Los Desaparecidos de Argentina can teach us all how to fight tyranny. The Madres is one family's story.

Playwright Stephanie Alison Walker is an L.A. based award-winning playwright whose plays include The Abuelas, Friends With Guns, The Art of Disappearing, American Home, The Sister House, Three Fittings and The Box Jumper. Her work has been produced and/or developed at The Actors Theatre of Louisville, Ashland New Plays Festival (Winner), and many more such as the Skylight Theatre, Antaeus Theatre Company, Moving Arts, The Road Theatre, The Blank Theatre, and San Diego Rep.

Director Sara Guerrero says that Walker's play "The Madres," spoke to my heart, reading it absolutely broke it. I'm wholly in love and thrilled to be directing this dark, beautiful, timely new work. A story of a mother's love filled with incredible resilience and resistance during a repressive time in Argentina's history. A history of over 40 years ago is still not openly talked about but sadly still relevant today.

Cast: Denise Blasor and Margarita Lamas share the lead role of Josefina (Ms. Lamas performs through March 26 and Ms. Blasor performs April 6 through April 29), with Natalie Llerena, Alexander Pimentel, Arianna Ortiz, and Gabriel Romero (Padre) filling out the cast. Skylight continues their popular series, "Beyond Conversation," the weekly post Sunday matinee discussion panels curated by Josh Gershick, Elissa Barrett and Kate Luhr, which allow audiences to gain deeper insights into the themes of the play. Scheduled talkback guests will include Alicia Partnoy (author of The Little School, which details her disappearance and her illegal imprisonment during the "Dirty Wars"). Additional "Beyond Conversation" speakers, subject to their availability, include Jorge Juerata, Patricia Garza, and Ernesto Yerena. A listing of topics, dates, and additional speakers will be posted on Skylight's website www.skylighttheatre.org Following The Madres will be the World Premiere of Hostage, by Michelle Kholos Brooks. Based on true events, Hostage will be directed by Elina de Santos.

Based on true events. During the Iran hostage crisis and without permission from the US government, a mother travels from Wisconsin to Tehran in hopes of reuniting with her son, a marine held in captivity. Hostage imagines what happened in that room when mother and son were briefly reunited, and the consequences that the mother faced upon returning to the U.S. Suddenly, she became a suspect in her own country. Hostage is a play about patriotism, the political vs. the personal and the ferocity of a mother's love. Michelle Kholos Brooks is an award-winning playwright with productions staged across the U.S. and Canada. Hostage was selected as a finalist for the 2016/17 Woodward/Newman Drama Award, the Fratti Newman Political Play Contest, and was a Showcase finalist for the National New Play Network. In our increasingly polarized society, perhaps there are lessons we can gather from the idealism of an everyday person; a mother, having the courage to stand outside politics out of love for her son, says playwright Michelle Kholos Brooks

SKYLIGHT THEATRE COMPANY discovers, develops and produces new, compelling works that expand mainstream theatre while nurturing and educating the people who create them. Recognized as a "powerhouse" of new play development by Dramatist Magazine, works premiering at the Skylight have gone on to be performed nationally and internationally; Church & State by Jason Odell Williams made its Off-Broadway debut March 2017. Most recently, Skylight garnered 5 LADCC award nominations for its production of Rotterdam, receiving the most nominations by a single production in 2018, and sharing that title with three other productions including Hamilton. A recipient of the prestigious Steinberg National Theatre Critics Citation (Dontrell, Who Kissed The Sea - Nathan Alan Davis), Skylight's resident PlayLAb writers have been recognized with productions nationwide, a national 2014 USA Ford Fellowship in Theater and Performance (Sigrid Gilmer), and locally as a winner in the 2015 Humanitas/CTG Playwriting Prize (Louisa Hill - Lord of the Underworld's Home for Unwed Mothers). Skylight won 4 Ovation Awards in 2014 for The Wrong Man and Pray To Ball (the most of any intimate theatre in LA), after seeing three of their original productions, Years To The Day, Open House and Sexsting, named to LA Weekly's 2013 Top Ten list. From the beginning Skylight made news, in 2011, their first year dedicated to developing new plays, Hermetically Sealed made the LA Times annual Top Ten Plays, and Mad Women moved to New York's famed La MaMa.

THE MADRES opens at 8:30pm on Saturday, March 10th and continues with performances on Fridays and Saturday at 8:30pm; Sundays 2:00pm; Mondays at 8:00pm through April 29, 2018. HOSTAGE opens at 8:30pm on Saturday, May 19th and continues with performances Fridays and Saturday 8:30pm; Sundays 2:00pm; Mondays 8:00pm through June 17, 2018. Skylight Theatre is located at 1816 ½ North Vermont, in Los Angeles, CA. 90027. Tickets and more information: http://skylighttheatre.org

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