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Abingdon Theatre Company Announces 29th Season

Before they return to us in person, ATC will be bringing back their Virtual Festival of Short Plays which initially debuted in the fall of 2020.

Abingdon Theatre Company Announces 29th Season

Abingdon Theatre Company has announced the programming for their upcoming 29th Season.

In April 2022, Abingdon Theatre Company will return to us live and in person, bringing us their main stage production of 'Queen's Girl in the World' by Caleen Sinette Jennings. This piece, which will make its New York Premiere at Theatre Row, looks at one young woman's journey of self-discovery at the onset of the Civil Rights-era. It chronicles the misadventures of bright-eyed, brown-skinned Jacqueline Marie Butler, whose sudden transfer from a protective, middle class upbringing in 1950s Queens to a progressive, predominantly Jewish private school in Greenwich Village. Funny, poignant, and filled with life - all punctuated with the irresistible sounds of Motown.

Playwright, Caleen Sinette Jennings said, "I'm a New Yorker at heart. I spent my early childhood, grad school, early professional and early motherhood years in the city. The stoops, subways, schools and sidewalks shaped the artist in me. I remember rushing across theatre row on the way to some temp job- job and thinking, "Someday I'll be rushing to catch my opening night." I can't thank Abingdon Theatre enough for making that dream come true. For making a home for this Queens Girl and for sharing my coming-of-age story at a time when the world is coming of age post-pandemic."

Chad Austin, Artistic Director, stated, "As I enter my fourth season as Artistic Director of Abingdon, I have never been more inspired to bring art to the Off-Broadway community and to our patrons who have been so loyal to ATC for many years. I look forward to being able to finally shed light on artists whose projects were delayed slightly due to Covid-19 and to once again discovering emerging voices of the American theatre. I am so proud to bring Caleen's work to her hometown of NYC with the Off- Broadway premiere of Queens Girl in the World and look forward to sharing this powerful and poignant story."

Before they return to us in person, ATC will be bringing back their Virtual Festival of Short Plays which initially debuted in the fall of 2020 and will continue their mission to create opportunities for all voices to be heard. This will be a week-long virtual festival shedding light on stories by people of color. Four new short pieces created and performed by people of color will be selected to participate. At the conclusion of the Festival, a diverse panel of judges, theatre professionals who are Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) will select a winner who will receive a stipend to be used to support further exploration of their piece and will be invited to become an "Artist-in-Residence." Abingdon Theatre Company has committed to producing the winning piece as part of their "Around the Table" free reading series. You can catch a short film of last year's winning piece "Empress Mei Li Lotus Blossom", by

Christine Toy Johnson on May 25th at 7pm ET. This event is free and will be followed by a talk back with the writer and cast, moderated by Reggie Lee. "Empress Mei Li Lotus Blossom", is being screened in May to Celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

In addition to their Main Stage production, Abingdon will be bringing us more in person events with the return of the free Around the Table reading series. This series will include projects that had to be cancelled at the start of the pandemic such as "Talk To Me" by Tim Rosser and Charlie Sohne, which will be in collaboration with the New York Children's Theatre. Also returning is the One Night Only series, again featuring previously programmed event, "Small", a one man play by Robert Montano and adding a new piece, "Jack & Melissa" by playwright Matthew McLachlan. More upcoming pieces for both series' will be announced in the coming months.

Finally, the theatre company has started a new venture, Abingdon Virtual Productions, which is producing its first Dance on Film project. The film, 'It Cries Too Loudly', was directed and choreographed by previous ATC Artist in Residence, Dolly Sfier. Devastated and powerless as she watched the 2020 Beirut explosion and its aftermath from afar, Dolly set about creating a work to express her delicate state of mind. It Cries Too Loudly, is a dance film exploring the overlap between joy and tragedy in her tumultuous home country and the experience of being an emigre. The film is set to appear at several film festivals in the coming year.

www.abingdontheatre.org



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