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Fiasco Theatre's THE TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA Begins Next Month at Theatre for a New Audience

Theatre for a New Audience, Jeffrey Horowitz, Founding Artistic Director, will present as its fourth production of the season the New York premiere of Fiasco Theater's The Two Gentlemen of Verona by William Shakespeare, directed by Jessie Austrian and Ben Steinfeld, beginning previews at Polonsky Shakespeare Center, 262 Ashland Place, on Friday, April 24, at 7:30pm for an opening on Thursday, April 30, at 7:00pm. The Two Gentlemen of Verona runs through May 24.


This production of Fiasco Theater's The Two Gentlemen of Verona with its cast of six was originally produced by Folger Theatre (Janet Alexander Griffin, Artistic Producer), Washington, D.C., and follows on the heels of Fiasco Theater's widely acclaimed staging of Into The Woods currently running at Roundabout Theatre Company.

Crackling and quick-moving, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, a seemingly simple tale of shifting devotions among mismatched lovers, helped launch the genre of "rom-com." Yet its delightful madcap surface conceals undercurrents, as its putative hero proves a cad and a faithless friend.

"Fiasco Theater's ongoing dialogue with Shakespeare is thrilling," said Mr. Horowitz, who presented the company's ground-breaking Cymbeline for a short run at The New Victory Theatre in 2010 and later that year co-produced its long run at the Barrow Street Theater. "Through play and simplicity, Fiasco Theater renews Shakespeare's stories in fresh ways."

"Fiasco is thrilled to be collaborating with Jeffrey Horowitz and Theatre for a New Audience again and can't wait to work in the beautiful new Brooklyn space," say the three co-artistic directors of Fiasco, Jessie Austrian, Noah Brody, and Ben Steinfeld. "Our ongoing relationship with Theatre for a New Audience and the incredible collaborators they have introduced to us (Cicely Berry and Andrew Wade, among others) continues to help us grow and strengthen our work on Shakespeare as individuals and as an ensemble."

Fiasco was drawn to The Two Gentleman of Verona because it is one of Shakespeare's earliest plays (perhaps his first), and after spending so much time with the late play Cymbeline, the troupe was eager to get to know Shakespeare as a young writer. Unlike Cymbeline, which uses epic plot twists and sweeping scope of story-telling, The Two Gentleman of Verona asks deep philosophical questions with simplicity and directness. "And so we've tried to be simple and direct in our staging and our acting of The Two Gentleman of Verona so that the philosophy within the play can be experienced and heard with honesty," the co-artistic directors said. "It may be our most 'bare-bones' production yet."

In The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Jessie Austrian co-directs and plays Julia, Noah Brody is Proteus, Paul L. Coffey is Speed, Zachary Fine is Valentine, Andy Grotelueschen plays both Lance and the Duke, and Emily Young is Lucetta and Sylvia.

Sets are by Derek McLane, costumes are by Whitney Locher, and lighting is by Tim Cryan. The vocal coach is Andrew Wade, the dramaturg is Jonathan Kalb, and the production stage manager is Shane Schnetzler.

Fiasco Theater www.fiascotheater.com is an ensemble theater company created by graduates of the Brown University/Trinity Rep M.F.A. acting program. Past shows include Cymbeline (Theatre for a New Audience/Barrow Street Theatre), Twelfth Night (Access Theater), Into the Woods (McCarter Theatre Center, The Old Globe and currently Roundabout Theatre Company, and Measure for Measure (New Victory Theater).

Jessie Austrian is co-director of and performing in The Two Gentleman of Verona and is a co-artistic director and founder of Fiasco Theater. She currently plays the Baker's Wife in Fiasco's Into the Woods. Broadway: The Importance of Being Earnest, Lend Me a Tenor. Off-Broadway: Fiasco's Measure for Measure (The New Victory Theatre), Fiasco's Cymbeline (Theatre For a New Audience and Barrow Street), The Marriage of Bette and Boo (Roundabout). Regional credits include Into the Woods, McCarter Theatre Center and Old Globe; The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Folger Theatre; Jane Eyre, The Guthrie; The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Trinity Repertory Company; My Fair Lady, Actors Theatre of Louisville and Virginia Stage Company; Cabaret & Main, Williamstown. TV: "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt," "Made in Jersey." Adjunct faculty at New York University Gallatin School and a proud graduate of Brown University and the Brown-Trinity M.F.A. Acting Program.

Noah Brody is an actor, director, writer, and teacher. He is a co-artistic director and head of producing for Fiasco Theater. Mr. Brody has co-directed Fiasco's productions of Into the Woods, Measure for Measure, Twelfth Night and Cymbeline, which received the 2012 Off Broadway Award for best revival. He has acted in all of Fiasco's productions including the Two Gentlemen of Verona. He has acted at theaters around the country and in Europe, appeared shirtless on soaps, headless on a crime drama, and as a dismembered torso on some underwear boxes. He teaches acting, voice and text through Fiasco and the NYU Gallatin School summer Shakespeare Intensive. He is a proud graduate of the Brown-Trinity M.F.A. Acting program.

Paul L. Coffey has appeared Off-Broadway in Fiasco's productions of Measure for Measure and Cymbeline and in Theatre for a New Audience's recent production of The Taming of The Shrew. Regionally he has appeared in Fiasco's Into the Woods at The Old Globe in San Diego, CA and at the McCarter Theater Center in Princeton, NJ, as well as in Fiasco's The Two Gentlemen of Verona at The Folger Shakespeare Theater in Washington, DC. Other regional credits include work with Trinity Repertory Company, Pig Iron Theatre Company, The Vineyard Playhouse, Company of Fools, BoarsHead Theater, The Theater at Monmouth, The Peterborough Players and The Berkshire Theatre Festival. Paul is a graduate of the Brown University/Trinity Rep Graduate Acting Program where he was a Stephen Sondheim Fellow.

Zachary Fine appeared in Fiasco Theater's production of The Two Gentlemen of Verona at the Folger Theater; Manifest Destiny (IRT Theater) Creator Performer; Julius Caesar (The Acting Company); The Seagull (New York Classical Theatre); A People (Terranova Collective); Walled In, a clown show based on Henry David Thoreau's Walden, creator/performer (IRT Theater); All Day Suckers (New Feet Productions); Two Noble Kinsmen (Guerrilla Shakespeare Project). Regional: theaters include Folger Theatre, Guthrie Theater, Playmakers Repertory Theater, Asolo Theatre Company, Franklin Stage, Fulton Opera House, Great River Shakespeare Festival (2 seasons), Colorado Shakespeare Festival, Clarence Brown Theatre Company, Off-Square Theatre Company. Television and Film: Person of Interest, Blackbox, Heartland, One Life to Live, A Midsummer Night's Dream (NewBookPress), Z-Rock.

Andy Grotelueschen has appeared in Fiasco Theater's The Two Gentlemen of Verona (Folger Theatre), Measure for Measure (The New Victory Theater), Into the Woods (Old Globe, McCarter Theatre Center), Twelfth Night, and Cymbeline (Theatre for A New Audience, Barrow Street Theatre). He made his Broadway debut with Roundabout in Cyrano de Bergerac. His other New York City credits include Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew (Theatre for a New Audience), Balm in Gilead with Michael Shannon, Monstrosity (13P), The Scariest (The Exchange), and The Glass Contraption's The Amazing Ted Show! (Ars Nova). Regionally he has appeared in The Servant of Two Masters (Yale Repertory Theatre, The Shakespeare Theatre Company), The Heart of Robin Hood (American Repertory Theater), and Noises Off (Actors Theatre of Louisville). His other regional credits include Guthrie Theater, The Acting Company, The Broad Stage, Sundance Institute Theatre Labs, Arizona Theatre Company and Trinity Repertory Company. His film projects include Still on the Road (PBS), American Gladiators, and the upcoming Geezer. On television, he appeared on "Elementary" (CBS) and "The Good Wife" (CBS). Mr. Grotelueschen is a graduate of the Brown-Trinity M.F.A. Acting Program, an apprentice to Christopher Bayes, and a Fiasco Theater company member, and he is from Iowa.

Ben Steinfeld is an actor, director, teacher, and musician who is co-director of but not appearing in The Two Gentlemen of Verona. Mr. Steinfeld has been seen on Broadway in the recent Roundabout Theatre Company revival of Cyrano de Bergerac, and as James Monroe in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. He has acted in and co-directed Fiasco Theater's acclaimed productions of Cymbeline (Theatre for a New Audience and the Barrow Street Theatre) and Into the Woods (McCarter Theatre and The Old Globe). Other regional acting credits include: Misalliance (Portland Center Stage), Design for Living (Williamstown), Room Service (Westport), and ten plays with Trinity Rep. Mr. Steinfeld's television and film work includes: HBO's "Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight," "The Good Wife," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," and the only film adaptation of Christopher Marlowe's The Jew of Malta. Mr Steinfeld co-authored an essay for the book Living With Shakespeare (Random House) and is an artist-in-residence with New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. He is co-artistic director of the celebrated Fiasco Theater and is a graduate of Brown University and the Brown/Trinity M.F.A. Program.

Emily Young is a Fiasco Theater company member and currently is playing Little Red Riding hood and Rapunzel in Fiasco's production of Into The Woods at Roundabout. Broadway: Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. Off-Broadway with Fiasco Theater: Measure for Measure, New Victory Theater; Cymbeline, Theater For A New Audience/Barrow Street Theater. Other off-Broadway credits: Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, The Public Theater; Romeo and Juliet, Theater Breaking Through Barriers; Colorado, SPF '04. Regional: Into the Woods, The Old Globe, McCarter Theater Center; The Two Gentlemen of Verona and Cymbeline, The Folger Theater; King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, North Carolina Shakespeare Festival; Love's Labor's Lost, Henry V, and Much Ado About Nothing, Illinois Shakespeare Festival; Cherry Orchard, Trinity Rep; Emma, Kennedy Center's Millennium Festival. Workshops/readings: Sundance Theater Lab, New York Stage & Film, ADP at TFANA, dirs. Cicely Berry and Andrew Wade. Film: God of Love (winner of Academy Award for Best Live Action Short 2011), Manhattan Melody (official selection at Telluride, Atlanta, and Woodstock film festivals), Natives (Winner Best Short Seattle LGBT Film Festival, official selection SXSW, The East Village Film series, New Orleans Film Festival, et al). Training: Brown-Trinity; B.A. Brown University.

Support for Theatre for a New Audience's Polonsky Shakespeare Center and its endowed programs has been provided through a public-private partnership. Public support for this project was provided by the City of New York through the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York City Council, and the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President. Leadership private support has been provided by Cleary, Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, the Elayne P. Bernstein Education Fund, The Howard Gilman Foundation, The Irving Harris Foundation, The Polonsky Foundation, Theodore C. Rogers, and the SHS Foundation.

Principal support for Theatre for a New Audience's season and programs is provided by Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and The SHS Foundation.

The Two Gentlemen of Verona is made possible, in part, by The Howard Gilman Foundation Fund for Classic Drama. The New Deal Ticket Program is supported by Macy's.

Single tickets, on sale now, are $60-$85 and may be purchased online at www.tfana.org, by phone at 866-811-4111, or in person at the Theatre for a New Audience Box Office (262 Ashland Place). Box office hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 1:00pm to 6:00pm. A limited number of premium seats are available for $100.

New Deal tickets for ages 30 and under or full-time students of any age are priced at $20 each and can be purchased online, by phone, or in person at the box office.

Performances are Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 7:30pm, with matinees on Saturdays and Sundays at 2:00pm. There are three Sunday evening performances at 7:30pm on April 26, May 3, and May 24. There is no 2:00pm matinee on Saturday, April 25 or Sunday, April 26. There is no performance on Tuesday, May 5, Wednesday, May 6, or Wednesday, May 13. The opening night performance on Thursday, April 30 begins at 7:00pm.


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