Southern Rep Theatre To Launch New Play Development Project About Historic Bayou Road

Southern Rep Theatre To Launch New Play Development Project About Historic Bayou RoadSouthern Rep Theatre today announced that it has commissioned Louisiana playwright Pamela Davis-Noland to lead a team of artists, neighbors (past & present), and vendors from the historic Bayou Road of New Orleans, to create an interactive, multi-disciplinary play that will premiere next year as part of the theater's 2019-20 season. The announcement of the project, titled BAYOU ROAD: A JOURNEY, A VISION, AND A PLAY, was made live at the re-opening celebration of The Rose Collaborative Campus (formerly the St. Rose de Lima Campus), where Southern Rep is now located permanently at 2541 Bayou Road. At the event, local performance artist Tonya Boyd-Cannon debuted a moving song and monologue from the play in development, which can be viewed here.

"New play development is central to our mission here at Southern Rep," said Producing Artistic Director Aimée Hayes. "We're absolutely thrilled to commission Pamela Davis-Noland, a dear friend and longtime collaborator, to lead this project that celebrates the vibrant culture that has existed here for over 400 years. I'm really excited to open our doors to the Bayou Road community to experience first-hand the process of developing a new play and see how the stories told, past and present, interact with Pamela's writing process over the next year."

Commissioned by Southern Rep, BAYOU ROAD: A JOURNEY, A VISION, AND A PLAY uses stories collected since 2016 via personal interviews, story-circles, shared anecdotes and ongoing historic research to celebrate the rich history of Bayou Road. The project seeks to honor the rich community which Southern Rep joins this season in its new home, the former St. Rose de Lima church. Mel Cook will direct the play, a culmination of a multi-year, partnership-rich process.

In addition, Southern Rep will integrate this project with its "Workshop Wednesday" series, inviting its neighbors and community to be part of the process of implementing ideas as they develop from page to stage. Once a month, for the next year, Southern Rep's audiences and fellow artists will be invited to join Davis-Noland for events, conversations, and projects that look into the process of new play development. Access to photos, video and audio excerpts of interviews with local neighbors on Bayou Road will also be accessible on Southern Rep's website, www.southernrep.com.

BAYOU ROAD: A JOURNEY, A VISION, AND A PLAY is just one of many community-based events that Southern Rep plans for 2018-19, with additional events to be announced soon. This project is supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Southern Rep's new permanent new home is located in the 13,400 square foot former St. Rose de Lima church building located at 2541 Bayou Road, New Orleans. The theatre plans to serve as a beacon for the arts, culture and community in New Orleans, providing new and expanded programming outside the theatre's Mainstage Season.

Southern Rep's Mainstage 2018-19 season, its 33rd, began October 3 with the regional premiere of A DOLL'S HOUSE, PART 2, by Lucas Hnath (running through October 21). Up next is MANDATORY MERRIMENT: AN UNTITLED HOLIDAY MUSICAL, created by Leslie Castay and Ian Hoch with book by Ian Hoch. Next spring features the regional premieres of THE WOLVES by Sarah DeLappe as well as two additional home-grown world premieres by New Orleans natives: AZUL by Christina Quintana and FLOWERS FOR HALIE - a celebration of Mahalia Jackson written by and starring Troi Bechet.

For more information on Southern Rep Theatre, visit www.SouthernRep.com.

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