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Mad Horse Theatre Company Announces Five Provocative Plays For 2019-20 Season

Mad Horse presents a season of five compelling plays that grapple with issues we face in our modern world.

With themes that explore the many faces of grief, grapple with the legacy of American racism, and offer campy critique on gentrification, these plays were selected by the company for their ability to examine the enduring aspects of the human experience with humor, intelligence and empathy.

In an exciting venture, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' APPROPRIATE will be presented at SPACE in the heart of the Portland Arts District (538 Congress St.). All other plays will be held at 24 Mosher Street, South Portland. Mad Horse Theatre Company is committed to presenting innovative theater in an intimate setting.

RADIANT VERMIN by Phillip Ridley

Directed by Jake Cote | September 26-October 13

As Portland experiences a housing crisis, the gentrification of neighborhoods is an issue that hits close to home. In this farcical horror story, a young London couple is given a rare opportunity to own their own home. How far are we willing to go to have that perfect kitchen?

"A blithely told fable for the age of unaffordable housing. Like a Brothers Grimm story, it is executed with its own consistent fantasy logic, deployed to remind us of the dangers of getting what we wish makes for nasty and energetic fun..." - The New York Times

Mary Jane by Amy Herzog

Directed by Stacey Koloski | November 7-24

Mary Jane is caring for a very ill child that needs constant care. Her story is at the heart of this wrenching play, which is also a story about a small group of women who commit themselves to the tough project of caring for this child and his mother. It's this push-pull between the momentary reprieve that (female) support offers and the persistent undertow of despair that provides the fascinating momentum of Mary Jane.

THE EFFECT by Lucy Prebble

Directed by Christine Louise Marshall | January 8-26

When two volunteers for an antidepressant clinical trial start to feel the tell-tale signs - sweaty hands, thumping hearts - they know they've fallen hard for each other. Or are their bodies processing a chemical romance? The question at the heart of THE EFFECT is one for our medicated time: Is love the sum of our chemical selves or something more?

"The Effect is a profoundly moving and surprisingly funny must-see." - Brightest Young Things

APPROPRIATE by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins

Directed by Christopher Price | February 13-March 1

*Note: This production will be at SPACE, 538 Congress St., Portland

APPROPRIATE, by New York playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, is a sprawling family drama. After the death of a patriarch, a sad and angry white family gather at their ancestral homestead, built on a plantation in Arkansas, to dispose of a debt-burdened estate. The title plays with the meaning of the word "appropriate" in both its adjectival and verb forms.

YOU GOT OLDER by Clare Barron

Directed by Reba Askari | April 16-May 3

Dumped and fired by her boyfriend/boss, Mae assumes her life can't get worse - until her Dad acquires a rare, aggressive form of cancer. YOU GOT OLDER is a dark comedy about coming of age as your youth falls apart behind you. Sexual desire, fantasy cowboys, high school boyfriends and family are all part of Mae's hilarious, emotional journey. Barron is not afraid to tackle the grittiest details of sex and death and explore the delicate moments that occur in times of passage.

All shows are performed Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 pm and Sunday at 2 pm.

All shows are pay-what-you-can for attendees 25 and under. Additional pay-what-you-can shows on the first two Thursdays and the first Sunday matinee for the run of each show. A talk-back is held after the second Sunday matinee where the community can engage with the director and cast in a discussion of the play.

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