Rattlestick Playwrights Theater Announces 2018/2019 Season

By: Feb. 27, 2018
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Rattlestick Playwrights Theater Announces 2018/2019 Season RATTLESTICK PLAYWRIGHTS THEATER (Daniella Topol, Artistic Director; Annie Middleton, Managing Director) is proud to announce its 2018/19 season. In Fall 2018, MacArthur Genius Grant Winner Samuel D. Hunter (The Whale, Bright New Boise, The Few) will team up with long-term collaborator Davis McCallum with the plays Lewiston and Clarkston, to be performed on a double bill for the first time. In Spring 2019, Rattlestick will present the World Premiere of Lockdown by Cori Thomas (When January Feels Like Summer), and directed by Kent Gash (Barbeque), commissioned by Rattlestick with support from The Toulmin Foundation.

"These plays are wrestling with what it means to be American today," said Daniella Topol, Artistic Director. "In what ways has the American Dream left certain individuals behind? How do we overcome our emotional, physical and spiritual isolation? How do we relate to our families and how do we make our own communities? Samuel D. Hunter and Cori Thomas are honest, poignant, funny and captivating writers telling essential and relevant stories."

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater recently concluded acclaimed runs of both the New York premiere of Pulitzer Prize finalist Dael Orlandersmith's Until the Flood, directed by Neel Keller, as well as the New York premiere of Mashuq Mushtaq Deen's Draw the Circle, directed by Chay Yew. The 2017/2018 season began with the sold-out run of Tow Playwright-in-Residence Diana Oh's {my lingerie play} 2017: THE CONCERT AND CALL TO ARMS!!!!!!!!! The Final Installation, co-directed by Oh and Orion Stephanie Johnstone. In April, Middle Voice, Rattlestick's apprentice company, will produce a workshop production of The Enclave, written by Arthur Laurents and directed by Victor Cervantes Jr. The 2017/2018 Season will conclude in June with a workshop production of Cusi Cram's St. Vincent's Project, Novenas for a Lost Hospital.

By Samuel D. Hunter
Directed by Davis McCallum
FALL 2018

At a failing fireworks stand in Lewiston, Idaho, and across the river at a big box store in Clarkston, Washington, two modern day descendants of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark struggle to find a way forward in a world where there is nothing left to discover.

Lewiston and Clarkston will be presented on a double bill this fall on the Rattlestick Mainstage. It will be the first time ever that the two plays - written to be in conversation with one another - will play the same space. Lewiston and Clarkston reunite playwright Samuel D. Hunter and director Davis McCallum, the award-winning team behind The Whale and at Rattlestick, The Few. This production is supported by The Venturous Theater Fund of the Tides Foundation.

"In addition to being the only time I've ever written two plays meant to be shown alongside one another, Lewiston and Clarkston are also different than almost all of my other plays in terms of execution," said Samuel D. Hunter. "What's so exciting to me about a production of both of these plays at Rattlestick is the fact that the space stands in such stark opposition to the setting of the plays--a converted upstairs church in the West Village standing in for a sprawling big box store, or the banks of a massive river. This is brand new territory for me artistically, and also new territory for Davis and I as collaborators - I believe it'll push both my writing and our years-long collaboration to new and exciting places."

By Cori Thomas
Directed by Kent Gash

Inspired by the playwright's time with the inmates at San Quentin Prison, LOCKDOWN follows a professional writer who agrees to help an inmate craft a statement for his parole hearing and unknowingly embarks on a painful and rewarding journey to confront her own grief. LOCKDOWN takes a thoughtful look at the impact of imprisonment, juxtaposing the conditions of long-term incarceration with the emotional confinement of a widow's grief.

"What an amazing opportunity to shed a light on a serious and devastating issue that is prison reform and a huge population of men (mostly of color) who could be contributing to society in a major way, who are locked up possibly and probably forever," said Cori Thomas.

In addition to the three MainStage productions, Rattlestick will continue its mission to present diverse, challenging, and provocative plays and to foster new voices and new work with multiple events throughout the season, presented in partnership with Rosalind Productions, Inc. including its annual F*#CKING GOOD PLAYS FESTIVAL, a week-long mini-festival of free staged readings of bold new work; THEATERJAM, a one day festival featuring over 20 writers, and scores of new artists; NEW SONGS NOW, an unplugged concert series, and work-in-progress showings from MIDDLE VOICE, Rattlestick's apprentice company.

All productions are to be performed at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater (224 Waverly Place). Subscriptions for the 2018/19 Rattlestick season are $99 for returning members. For new members, subscriptions are $109 if purchased prior to September 1. After September 1, subscriptions are $125. Rattlestick memberships include a choice premium seat for Mainstage and Apprentice shows, discounted guest tickets, unlimited ticket exchanges (subject to availability), advance notice and discount offers to readings, special events, and more.

Founded in 1994, RATTLESTICK PLAYWRIGHTS THEATER is an Obie-Award winning theater that has created, developed, and produced over 100 World Premieres. Our mission is to present diverse, challenging, and provocative plays that might not otherwise be produced and to foster the future voices of the American theater. When we take on a playwright, we guarantee them a second production, regardless of the reception of the first. We have produced the first plays and early works of some of today's leading voices, including Annie Baker (The Aliens), Sheila Callaghan (That Pretty, Pretty), Jesse Eisenberg (The Revisionist), Roberto Aguirra-Scasa (Dark Matters), Martyna Majok (Ironbound), Adam Rapp (The Hallway Trilogy), Lucy Thurber (The Hilltown Plays), Jonathan Tolins (Buyer and Cellar), and Craig Wright (The Pavilion). We have also produced works by some of our nation's most important playwrights, including Craig Lucas (Ode to Joy), Dael Orlandersmith (Horsedreams), and José Rivera (Massacre, Sing to Your Children). We produce theater to inspire empathy and provoke conversations in response to the complexities of our culture. For more info visit www.rattlestick.org.

Rattlestick is accessible via the 1, 2 and 3 trains (at 14 St. and Christopher St./Sheridan Square) and the A, B, C, D, E, F and M trains (at West 4th St.).


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