INTAR Theatre Celebrates Pride with JULIO DOWN BY THE SCHOOLYARD

INTAR Theatre Celebrates Pride with JULIO DOWN BY THE SCHOOLYARD

INTAR today announced the cast for the World Premiere of Julio Down by the Schoolyard, a new play by J. Julian Christopher, directed by Lou Moreno.Julio Down by the Schoolyard will play a special limited Off-Broadway engagement during World Pride/Stonewall 50, three performances only: Thursday June 27th, Friday June 28th, and Saturday June 29th all at 7pm.

It is the morning after the brutal murder of Julio Rivera, a gay Puerto Rican man in Jackson Heights, Queens. The murder became the first gay hate crime tried in New York State during the 1990s. In Julio Down by The Schoolyard, the community reacts and is taken on a journey of self-discovery by a fabulously unapologetic queen personifying the beauty and brutality of Jackson Heights. The play is an examination of the political and societal environment of Jackson Heights capturing the fear and outrage of the LGBTQIA+ Community leading to the borough's first public demonstrations against homophobia. Like many Queer stories, the play does not follow a traditional narrative, as LGBTQIA+ people are often forced to follow non-traditional lives due to laws and societal pressure. The play focuses on poetry, imagery, and Fabulism to take a hard look at how Queer bodies are seen as threats to the status quo; in this case, Julio Rivera, but also in the current political climate.

Julio Down by the Schoolyard will feature Chris Alfonso, Andres Chaves, Sijean Gonzalez, Daniela Gonzalez y Perez, Geovanny Guzman, Vasilios Leon, Jimena Lucero, Maria Renee Lavelle Mendez, Camila Perez, Luis Ponce, Adam Rodriguez, and Edgard Toro. Julio Down by The Schoolyard will have lighting design by Rachel Fae Szymanski and sound design by Sophia Ubilla.

Julio Down by the Schoolyard was developed with the 2018-'19 UNIT52. UNIT52 is INTAR's artist development program founded in 2012 with the goal of providing "New to NYC Artists" an immediate home to create, connect and establish their own community.

J. Julian Christopher is a Queer, Puerto Rican and Dominican playwright. He holds an MFA in Acting from The New School for Drama. Acting credits include: TBA (by Carla Ching), Holiday Movies (directed by Liz Swados), andThe Karaoke Show (directed by Diane Paulus). Awards include: The 2009 Public Theater Emerging Writers Group, the 2014 Best New Work Motif Award, the 2015 Queens Arts Council Grant, the 2017 & 2018 Pipeline Theatre Company PlayLab, and the Class of 2025 New Dramatist Residency. He has workshopped his plays at LAByrinth Theater, TerraNova Collective, Fuse Theatre, and The Working Theatre. Productions include: Man Boobs (Pride Films & Plays, 2011), Nico was a Fashion Model (Counter-Productions Theatre Company, 2013), Animals Commit Suicide (First Floor Theater, 2015), andLocusts Have No King (INTAR, 2016). Julian's short plays, Metro Psalm andSCHWARZ! (Hansel und Gretel) were selected as finalists in the Off-Off Broadway Samuel French Short Play Festival two years in a row (2009 & 2010). He was also the book writer for Peril Forest, a musical written for the 24 Hour Musicals in May 2016. Julian has been a finalist for Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Rising Circle, and SPACE at Ryder Farm's Working Farm Residency. Other plays include, Alligator Mouth, anOTHER, ¡OSO FABULOSO! & The Bear Backs, and Bruise & Thorn (2018 PlayPenn Conference). He is a co-producer and co-writer of the hit web series, Bulk - The Series, the chair of Region 1's National Playwriting Program for The Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, and an Assistant Professor of Theatre at Queensborough Community College.

For INTAR, Lou Moreno directed Fish Men by Candido Tirado, Se Llama Cristina by Octavio Sola­s, Lucy Loves Me by Migdalia Cruz, and Drawn and Quartered by Maggie Bofill which was developed in INTAR's NewWorks Lab and was INTAR's inaugural production under his leadership. Other directing credits include Rent Control by Evan Zes, Trying by Erin Browne (The Bushwick Starr); Minotaur a Romance and Beautiful by David Anzuelo (LAByrinth Theater Company at The Public Theater); MCC Youth Festival (Manhattan Class Company); Kingdom (NYMF); End of the Line (MCC Youth Company); Rock/Paper/Scissors (NY Hip-Hop Theater Festival at The Public Theater); The Bigger Man (Partial Comfort); and Blues for a Gray Sun by Nilaja Sun (INTAR). He also serves as an Associate Producer with The 24-Hour Company (Athens, Greece and Broadway). Mr. Moreno won the 2005 Princess Grace Award for Directing.

Performances will be at INTAR's Theatre, 500 West 52nd Street at Tenth Avenue, on the 4th floor. Tickets are only $10, and may be purchased at or by calling 212/352-3101 or toll free, 866/811-4111.

For more information on Julio Down by the Schoolyard and all the programs at INTAR, visit INTAR on the web at

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