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The Award-Winning Play CHASING JACK Comes to The Willow Theatre In Sugar Sand Park

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The Award-Winning Play CHASING JACK Comes to The Willow Theatre In Sugar Sand Park

Chasing Jack, the award-winning play by John S. Anastasi, will have its southeastern premiere at the Willow Theatre in Sugar Sand Park this March. The production, to be directed by Peter J. Loewy, will begin previews on March 12th and open on March 14th. The show will run through March 22nd.

Chasing Jack, which won the Best Play Award at the 2019 New York Theatre Festival Summerfest, is the story of Dr. Jack Chase, a surgeon with a serious gambling addiction. Through the lens of a malpractice lawsuit that could end his career, Chasing Jack explores familial relationships, medical ethics, and the potentially crippling effects of addiction. The stakes couldn't be any higher as Jack looks back at pivotal moments in his life, his relationships, and his career.

"I had written several plays, three of which were produced Off Broadway," playwright John Anastasi said recently, when he was asked how Chasing Jack came about. "It was after a reading of my play I Forgive You Ronald Reagan, starring Lucie Arnaz and her husband Laurence Luckinbill, and we were all out for dinner. Lucie asked me about her mother's aortic dissection (I am a thoracic surgeon in 'my other life'!) and we started talking about heart surgery. She listened to all the stories and was mesmerized, and at the end of the evening she said, "You write well but the best stories are when you write and talk about what you do!" My response was that I spend 14 hours a day doing heart surgery, the last thing I want to do is sit in front of a computer and write about it.

"So, two plays later I was at the opening night party of my play, Would You Still Love Me if, with Kathleen Turner," Anastasi continued. John Patrick Shanley came up to me and said almost the same thing: "Write about what you know..." There are two things I love, medicine and the law. My daughter is a lawyer. So, I started to think of how to connect them all and after an especially difficult operation, the germ of the story began.

"I don't want anyone to get the idea that I'm Jack, because I'm not," he says. "Some of me is in him as I believe some of me is in all the characters I write, even the women. The monologues Jack speaks regarding what it's like to be a heart surgeon are very real. The addiction concept is drawn from having the unfortunate experience of operating on drug addicts over the years, and watching them lie, betray, and systematically destroy every relationship, especially the people who love them the most."

Anastasi and Director Loewy have cast a combination of local and out of town actors in the production. Galen Murphy Hoffman will play Dr. Jack Chase, and two-time Tony Award nominee Crista Moore will portray the attorney Ockerman - the first time a woman has played this role. Other cast members include India H. Jarvis as Taylor, Elana Valastro as Rebecca, David Sadaka as The Judge, Rick Malone as Robert, Ben Prayz as Dr. Fox, and Francis Allen as Dr. Noel.


Chasing Jack will run from March 12th - 22nd at the Willow Theatre in Sugar Sand Park. Tickets are $30; group rates (6 or more tickets purchased in one transaction) are $25. Tickets can be purchased online at sugarsandpark.org/chasing-jack or by phone at 561-347-3948. The Willow Theatre is located at 300 South Military Trail, in Boca Raton's Sugar Sand Park (33486).


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