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BY THE WATER Begins Performances Tonight Off-Broadway

By The Water, the new play by Sharyn Rothstein, directed by Hal Brooks, begins performances tonight, November 4 at 7:30PM as part of The Studio at Stage II -- Harold and Mimi Steinberg New Play Series at New York City Center -- Stage II (131 West 55th Street). The limited engagement will open on Tuesday, November 18.

By The Water marks the beginning of performances one week after the second anniversary of Hurricane Sandy striking the New York/New Jersey area on October 29, 2012.

By The Water is produced by Manhattan Theatre Club (Lynne Meadow, Artistic Director; Barry Grove, Executive Producer), in association with Ars Nova (Jason Eagan, Artistic Director; Renee Blinkwolt, Managing Director).

The cast features Cassie Beck (The Whale, The Drunken City) as Emily Mancini, Quincy Dunn-Baker (The Wayside Motor Inn, Trust) as Sal Murphy, Charlotte Maier (Act One, The Last Yankee at MTC) as Andrea Carter, Deirdre O'Connell (Circle Mirror Transformation, In The Wake) as Mary Murphy, Tom Pelphrey (End of the Rainbow, Cinemax's "Banshee") as Brian Murphy, Ethan Phillips (All The Way, Taking Care of Baby at MTC) as Philip Carter, and Vyto Ruginis (The Real Thing, One of the Guys) as Marty Murphy.

MTC's The Studio at Stage II, in association with Ars Nova, presents Sharyn Rothstein's By the Water, the first world premiere production to come out of their unique partnership.

Hurricane Sandy has just ravaged the lifelong home of Marty and Mary Murphy (Vyto Ruginis, Deirdre O'Connell). But the storm has ripped apart more than just the walls: with their neighbors too devastated to stay, the couple's beloved Staten Island community is in danger of disappearing forever. Determined to rebuild, Marty wages a campaign to save his neighborhood and his home, but when the Murphys' sons (Quincy Dunn-Baker, Tom Pelphrey) arrive to help their parents dig out, past betrayals come rushing to the surface.

With fierce compassion and poignant humor, By The Water reminds us that the very powers that tear us apart can also bring us together.

The creative team for By the Water includes Wilson Chin (scenic design), Jessica Pabst (costume design), Tyler Micoleau (lighting design), Ryan Rumery (original music & sound design), and Ben Furey (dialect coach).

By The Water was commissioned by The Writer's Room (Manhattan Theatre Club, Ars Nova). The Writer's Room is a partnership between Manhattan Theatre Club and Ars Nova, designed to commission, develop and support playwrights in the process of creating new work for the stage. Drawing on each organization's strengths and areas of expertise, the program is a unique, collaborative, developmental process for advancing new works from commission through production. MTC and Ars Nova jointly select playwrights or writing teams to receive Writer's Room commissions, with commissioned writers participating in a program designed to offer extensive developmental support. The Writer's Room encourages artistic risk taking in an environment that is both supportive and sustaining. Commissioned writers for The Writer's Room include Adam Bock and Justin Levine collaborating on the creation of a new musical; Rachel Bonds; Thomas Bradshaw; Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig; Jackie Sibblies Drury; Samuel D. Hunter; and the band of actors, musicians, and storytellers known as PigPen Theatre Co. The Studio at Stage II has been partially underwritten with a major grant from The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust.

The Studio at Stage II is Manhattan Theatre Club's new initiative at New York City Center - Stage II (131 West 55th Street). The initiative launched in 2012 with the sold out, critically acclaimed world premiere of Murder Ballad the rock musical by Julia Jordan and Juliana Nash and has continued with the critically acclaimed American premieres of Choir Boy by Tarell Alvin McCraney, Taking Care of Baby by Dennis Kelly, and The Lion by Benjamin Scheuer.

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Lynne Meadow and Executive Producer Barry Grove, MTC has become one of the country's most prominent and prestigious theatre companies. Over the past four and a half decades, MTC productions have earned numerous awards including 6 Pulitzer Prizes and 19 Tony Awards. MTC has a Broadway home at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street) and an Off-Broadway theatre at New York City Center - Stage I (131 West 55th Street). Renowned MTC productions include The Assembled Parties; Venus in Fur; Master Class; Good People; The Whipping Man; Time Stands Still; The Royal Family; Ruined; The American Plan; Come Back, Little Sheba; Blackbird; Translations; Shining City; Rabbit Hole; Doubt; Proof; The Tale of the Allergist's Wife; Love! Valour! Compassion!; A Small Family Business; Sylvia; Putting It Together; Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune; Crimes of the Heart; and Ain't Misbehavin.'

Ars Nova (Jason Eagan, Artistic Director; Renee Blinkwolt, Managing Director) is NYC's premier hub for new talent, developing and producing theater, comedy, and music artists in the early stages of their professional careers. By supporting outside-the-box thinking, encouraging innovative, genre-bending projects, and nurturing creative ideas into smart, surprising new work, Ars Nova pushes the boundaries of live entertainment and gives voice to a new generation of artists and audiences. Past world-premiere productions include: the critically-acclaimed, award-winning electro-pop opera Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, which recently concluded an Off-Broadway transfer engagement; the Drama Desk-nominated night of mind-bending entertainment, Charlatan; Eager to Lose, a farce-in-burlesque; Drama Desk-nominated Core Values; The Lapsburgh Layover; Be a Good Little Widow; Now Circa Then; the Drama Desk-nominated spaghetti western musical Bloodsong of Love; the pirate puppet rock odyssey Jollyship the Whiz-Bang; boom, which went on to be the most-produced play of the 2009-2010 season; and Freestyle Love Supreme featuring Tony Award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda. Each year, the company serves more than 500 emerging artists with its extensive and varied development programs and at least 150 evenings of diverse entertainment make it onto the Ars Nova's West 54th Street stage.

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