Oren Safdie's FACADE to Have First Public Reading at Urban Stages in April

The play - his 5th centered in the world of contemporary architecture - is inspired by New York's Museum of Modern Art's (MoMA) recent expansion.

By: Mar. 27, 2023
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Oren Safdie's FACADE to Have First Public Reading at Urban Stages in April

Oren Safdie, an internationally celebrated playwright of contemporary architecture culture, will have his new play, Façade, presented as a staged reading at Urban Stages in New York. The play - his 5th centered in the world of contemporary architecture - is inspired by New York's Museum of Modern Art's (MoMA) recent expansion, and the controversial decision by its architects, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, to demolish the beloved Folk Art Museum, designed by their friends, Billie Tsien and Tod Williams. The play is a fictionalized take on what may have transpired between the two architecture couples as they grappled with their choices, wrestled with their conscience, and tried to come to a balanced decision in the face of intense scrutiny by their profession, the New York Press, and the public at large ... How far will they go to fight for their building?

Oren Safdie (Playwright) attended Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture and Planning before turning to writing plays. He has produced a series of tomes on architecture culture, including his debut work Private Jokes, Public Places, The Bilbao Effect, False Solution and Color Blind. (4 of his plays have been NY Times' Critic's Pick and Private Jokes, Public Places was singled out by the WSJ as one of the top new plays of the decade.) His films include You Can Thank Me Later, Bittersweet, and soon to be released, The Sunflower. He has also been a contributor to Metropolis, Dwell, The New Republic and The National Post. He has taught at the University of Miami, Douglas College, California School of the Arts, Interlochen Center for the Arts, and St Olaf College where he's presently an assistant professor in the English Department.

Anthony Patellis (Director) began directing Oren Safdie plays at LaMama ETC, 25 years ago, beginning with Jews & Jesus, then co-directing with Oren, and starring, in Fiddler Sub-Terrain. In 2008, he co-starred in Oren's, West Bank, UK in New York, and Malibu Stage. Other directing credits include, Lobster Tales, Jesus Christ Superstar, Waiting for My Man, Totie. This June he will star in the American premier of Arthur Miller's, The Hook, on stage in Brooklyn. Anthony currently plays Father Colicchio, in Tulsa King, for Paramount+.

The reading will be performed by Cindy Cheung (Lady in the Water, The Sinner), Robert Montano (Cloud Tectonics, Sex and the City), Gia Forakis (Antigone Digs a Hole, Jews & Jesus) and Michael Sean McGuinness (The Importance of Being Earnest, The Plot Against America).

URBAN STAGES is an award-winning, not-for-profit, Off-Broadway Theatre Company founded in 1984 by current Artistic Director Frances Hill. For over 35 years, Urban Stages has produced dozens of world, American, and N.Y. premieres, including Pulitzer Prize Finalist Bulrusher (2007) by Eisa Davis. They have been honored with awards, nominations, and recognition from the Drama Desk, Obie Awards, Audelco, Outer Critics Circle, and more. Charmed Life from Soul Singing to Opera Star by Lori Brown Mirabal (2021) and Bars and Measures by Idris Goodwin (2019) were critically acclaimed. Death of a Driver (2019) by Will Snider went on to a regional production at The Salt Lake Acting Company. In our 2017/18 season, A Deal by Zhu Yi toured China, and Dogs of Rwanda by Sean Christopher Lewis toured regionally. Other notable productions include the world premiere of Langston in Harlem by Walter Marks (music and book) and Kent Gash (book and direction) garnered a Drama Desk Nomination, a Joe A. Calloway award, and 4 Audelco awards including Best Musical Production of 2010. Critically acclaimed hits Mabel Madness by Tony-winner Trezana Beverley (2016), Communion by Daniel MacIvor (2016), and Angry Young Man by Ben Woolf (2017), have premiered at Urban Stages. In addition, Unseamly, by Oren Safdie (2015), was an N.Y. Times Critics' Pick. Jim Brochu's Character Man (2014) was nominated for a Drama Desk, and an Outer Critics Circle award for Best Solo Performance, and Honky (2013) by Greg Kalleres which was televised on PBS in late 2015.

Performance Details:

Sunday, April 16 at 7:00 pm
Urban Stages, 259 W 30th St (between 7th & 8th), New York, NY 10001


Admission: Free (Seating Limited)






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