Jocelyn Bioh's NOLLYWOOD DREAMS Adds Shows at Cherry Lane

Jocelyn Bioh's NOLLYWOOD DREAMS Adds Shows at Cherry LaneDue to strong advance sales, Cherry Lane Theatre will add three performances to Jocelyn Bioh's NOLLYWOOD DREAMS, the final presentation of its Obie award-winning MENTOR PROJECT.

The added performances will take place on Sunday, April 30 at 3 pm, Wednesday, May 3 at 3 pm, and Friday, May 5 at 10 pm.

NOLLYWOOD DREAMS is directed by Saheem Ali and mentored by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, and will be presented at Cherry Lane (38 Commerce St.) from April 25 - May 6, 2017.

Now in its 19th season, MENTOR PROJECT pairs new playwrights with seasoned writers for a season of play development, casting, rehearsals and a fully-staged production. MENTOR PROJECT's Producing Artistic Directors are Seri Lawrence and Janio Marrero, and Angelina Fiordellisi is Cherry Lane's Founding Artistic Director.

The cast of NOLLYWOOD DREAMS features Nyahalé Allie (TV: "The Blacklist"), Kelechi Ezie (National Tour: Book of Mormon), Washington Kirk (NY: Patient, Lover, Friend), Nana Mensah (TV: "An African City"), Irungu Mutu (Off-Broadway: Our Lady of Kibeho), and Dorcas Sowunmi (Regional: Guess Who's Coming to Dinner).

In the 1990s, Nollywood (Nigerian film industry) is on the rise. Ayamma dreams of leaving her job at her parents' travel agency and becoming a star. When she auditions for a new film by Nigeria's hottest director, tension flares with his former leading lady - as sparks fly with Nollywood's biggest heartthrob.

NOLLYWOOD DREAMS creative team includes Arnulfo Maldonado (Scenic Design), Dede Ayite (Costume Design), Chris Thielking (Lighting Design), Matt Otto (Sound Design), Crystal Arnette (Video Design), Addison Heeren (Properties), Dominique Fawn Hill (Associate Costume Design) and Michael Denis (Production Stage Manager).

NOLLYWOOD DREAMS plays April 25 - May 6, Tuesday - Friday at 7 pm, Saturday at 5 pm and 9 pm, Sunday at 7 pm. NO PERFORMANCES: Monday, May 1 or Tuesday, May 2. ADDED PERFORMANCES: Sunday, April 30 at 3 pm, Wednesday, May 3 at 3 pm, and Friday, May 5 at 10 pm. Tickets are $25. For info and reservations visit www.cherrylanetheatre.org or call OvationTix at 866 811 4111.

Cherry Lane's MENTOR PROJECT received an Obie Award and James Kirkwood Award for American Playwrights for its dedication to providing professional opportunities for emerging writers to hone their craft in tandem with seasoned playwrights of note. The company ended their 2015-16 season with the world premiere of Israel Horovitz's play OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF BABES starring Francesca Choy-Key, Angelina Fiordellisi, Judith Ivey and Estelle Parsons. One of the most renowned theatres in the country, Cherry Lane Theatre has produced a large succession of plays by leading writers from F. Scott Fitzgerald to Gertrude Stein, Samuel Beckett, Edward Albee and Harold Pinter. Under the artistic leadership of Angelina Fiordellisi since 1996, Cherry Lane remains devoted to developing and producing new works for the stage. Diane Alianiello is General Manager, Seri Lawrence and Janio Marrero are Interim Producing Artistic Directors, Hillary Cohen is Director of Individual and Institutional Giving and Reed Ridgley is Grants Manager.

Jocelyn Bioh (Playwright, Nollywood Dreams) is a 1st generation Ghanaian-American writer/performer from New York City. She has her B.A. in English and Theatre from The Ohio State University and MFA in Theatre-Playwriting from Columbia University School of the Arts. Jocelyn is a commissioned playwright with Manhattan Theatre Club and the Atlantic Theater Company and she is a Resident Playwright at LCT3. Her plays include: African Americans (Produced at Howard University 2015; Southern Rep Ruby Prize Award Finalist 2011; O'Neill Center Semi-Finalist, 2012), Nollywood Dreams (Kilroy's List 2015) and her new play School Girls (upcoming: world premiere at MCC in fall of 2017). Her musical The Ladykiller's Love Story, for which she conceived the story and wrote the libretto, with music/lyrics by Cee Lo Green, is currently in development with Hi-Arts NYC. As an actress, Jocelyn's credits include: Everybody (Signature Theatre; Lucille Lortel nomination) Men on Boats (Playwrights Horizons,) The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (Broadway; Tony Award Winner for Best Play, 2015), An Octoroon (Soho Rep, Obie Award Winner for Best Play, 2014), Booty Candy (Wilma Theater), Seed (Classical Theater of Harlem), and Marcus; or the Secret of Sweet (City Theatre). She also originated the role of "Topsy" in the world premiere of Neighbors (The Public Theater). TV: Former Cover Girl spokesmodel, "Blue Bloods" (CBS), "The Detour" (TBS), "The Characters" (Netflix), "Louie" (FX), and "One Life to Live" (ABC).

Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (Mentor) Credits include Everybody (Signature Theatre), War (LCT3/Lincoln Center Theater), Gloria (Vineyard Theatre; Pulitzer Prize-finalist), Appropriate (Signature Theatre; Obie Award), An Octoroon (Soho Rep; Obie Award) and Neighbors (The Public Theater). He is a Residency Five playwright at Signature Theatre and under commissions from LCT3/Lincoln Center Theater, MTC/Sloan, and the Steppenwolf Theatre Company. His recent honors include the MacArthur Fellowship, the Windham-Campbell Prize for Drama, the Benjamin Danks Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation Theatre Award, the Steinberg Playwriting Award, and the Tennessee Williams Award. He currently teaches in the Hunter College Playwriting MFA Program, where is a Master-Artist-in-Residence.

Saheem Ali (Director) Originally from Nairobi, Kenya, Saheem is a director of plays and musicals with an emphasis on new work. Recent credits include Twelfth Night (Public Theater), Dot (Detroit Public Theater), The Booty Call (Inner Voices) and A Lesson from Aloes (Juilliard). He has workshopped new plays by Donja Love, Jocelyn Bioh, Jen Silverman, Nathaniel Shapiro, Phillip Howze, Eric Micha Holmes and James Ijames at Playwrights Realm, MCC, New York Stage & Film, National Black Theater and PEN World Voices. He has co-written two musicals with composer Michael Thurber: The Booty Call (Roundabout Underground Reading Series) and Goddess (O'Neill Musical Theater Conference). He was the associate director of The Tempest at The Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park. He is a Usual Suspect and former Directing Fellow at New York Theater Workshop.

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