Rattlestick Playwrights Theater Announces Middle Voice Show THE PARLOUR, 2017 Initiatives

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater Announces Middle Voice Show THE PARLOUR, 2017 Initiatives

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater has announced its 2017/2018 Fellowships, commissions, and more, as well as their Fall 2017 Middle Voice workshop production, furthering their commitment to support emerging artists in unique ways.

Artistic Director Daniella Topol asserts, "We are committed to making an artistic home for theatermakers to develop their artistry and learn how professional theatres are run. Without a bridge into the profession, it is extremely difficult for artists to launch their careers, and for the American theatre to cultivate the next generation of leaders. We are so grateful to our key funders, The Tow Foundation and Sonja Berggren and Patrick Seaver, for their belief in Rattlestick and in giving these worthy artists the home they deserve."

Founded and mentored by award-winning playwright Lucy Thurber, Middle Voice at Rattlestick is a collection of 27 young theater artists: writers, actors, directors, producers between the ages of 18 and 30 from traditionally diverse, underrepresented communities. The mission of Middle Voice is to create theater that embraces risk and encourages ensemble, and to reach different class segments in American society through the execution of a Mission Project. The Mission Project is a theatrical work, series, or program culminated during the artist's apprenticeship.

After successful readings and workshops at Clubbed Thumb, Walkerspace, and MCC, Middle Voice will produce the workshop production of Xavier Galva's THE PARLOUR. Set in the chaotic world of New York City fine dining, THE PARLOUR illustrates the hierarchy found in an upscale members-only restaurant. THE PARLOUR examines the inequity found in that system and the imbalance entrenched within these people. Directed by Victor Cervantes, Jr. and featuring an entire cast making their Off-Broadway debut (Chalan Cunningham, Edison Diaz, John Anthony Gorman, Nicole Kang, Angelica Katie Richardson, Jean-Patrick Simeon, and Pedro Aijon Torres), performances run September 6 through 10 at 8pm with a 3pm matinee on September 10 and are open to the public. All tickets are $10 and can be purchased by visiting www.rattlestick.org.

Kevin Hourigan, a recent graduate from Yale School of Drama's MFA Directing Program, was just awarded the newly created Rattlestick Directing Fellowship. Supported by Sonja Berggren and Patrick Seaver, and designed by Artistic Director Daniella Topol in consultation with Liz Diamond, Chair of the Yale School of Drama Directing department, the goal of the Fellowship is to provide an artistic home for a promising new director at a prominent off-Broadway theater. The Rattlestick Directing Fellow will play a vital artistic role at our theatre, working with the Artistic Director on cultivating projects for potential future production. The Fellowship will culminate in an end-of- the-year event where the Directing Fellow will design an evening to showcase their work for the industry and general public.

The Tow Foundation has awarded $75,000 grants to seven New York City theatres to support a playwright of their choosing as the 2017-2018 Tow Playwright-in-Residence. The residency program includes a full-time salary for each playwright, and the residencies will include a guaranteed a full production of a play by each playwright at their respective sponsor theatre company. Diana Oh is one of the recipients with {my lingerie play} 2017: THE CONCERT AND CALL TO ARMS!!!!!!!!! The Final Installation, which begins previews on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 and opens on Monday, October 9, 2017 at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater (224 Waverly Place) for a limited run through Saturday, October 28, 2017. Tickets can be purchased can be purchased by visiting www.rattlestick.org.

The Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation's Program to Advance Women in the Performing Arts makes, among other grants, grants to selected theaters to commission new works by emerging female playwrights. The Toulmin Playwright Commission goes to Cori Thomas for her play LOCKDOWN. This piece is inspired by a personal revelation that occurred during an ongoing writing project with Life Sentenced Inmate at San Quentin State Prison, and the opportunity to get to know him and his fellow incarcerated population in a very intimate manner. Her experience spending entire days at time with these men in their environment, in a fairly unrestricTEd Manner, is the revelation that freedom is not a place at all, it is a state of being.

The previously announced 2017/2018 season at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater kicks off with Diana Oh's {my lingerie play} 2017: THE CONCERT AND CALL TO ARMS!!!!!!!!! The Final Installation (Text, Music and Lyrics by Diana Oh, Co-Directed by Orion Stephanie Johnstone and Oh) this September, presented in association with Rosalind Productions, Inc. Rosalind Productions Inc. produces commercial Broadway and not for profit theater featuring unique and influential female performers and characters, currently represented on Broadway with the new musical WAR PAINT. The mainstage season will continue in January 2018 with Dael Orlandersmith's UNTIL THE FLOOD and Mashuq Mushtaq Deen's DRAW THE CIRCLE, which will be presented in repertory.

All productions to be performed at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater (224 Waverly Place). Subscriptions for the 2017/18 Rattlestick season are $89 for returning members (must purchase by August 30, 2017) and $99 for new members. 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, and COFFEE AND CONVERSATION with Artistic Director, Daniella Topol, in Spring 2018.

Since 1994, RATTLESTICK PLAYWRIGHTS THEATER has created, developed and produced many of the nation's greatest playwrights and their works. Our mission is to provide a positive, nurturing experience for emerging playwrights, to present diverse and challenging plays that otherwise might not be produced, and to foster the future voices of American theater. When we take on a playwright, we guarantee him or her 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), Martyna Majok (Ironbound), Adam Rapp (The Hallway Trilogy), Lucy Thurber (The Hilltown Plays), and Craig Wright (The Pavilion). They have also produced works by some of our nation's most important playwrights, including Charles Fuller (One Night...), Craig Lucas (Ode to Joy), Dael Orlandersmith (Horsedreams), and José Rivera (Massacre, Sing to Your Children), whose risky and challenging works other theaters are unwilling to produce. For more info visit www.rattlestick.org.

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Xavier Galva is a Dominican-American writer/performer/ teaching artist born in Washington Heights and raised in the Bronx. He trained as an actor at the Atlantic Acting School. He is a founding member of The Rattlestick's apprentice company: The Middle Voice. He's an Alumni of the 2014-2015 Clubbed Thumb Early Career Writers Group, the MCC Theater youth company, and the 2016 PlayLabs series. His plays have been developed by MCC Theater, Clubbed Thumb, and Middle Voice at Rattlestick.

Kevin Hourigan is a director of plays, opera, music, and devised work. Some of his credits include: Blood Wedding, The Merchant of Venice, The Hour of Great Mercy by Miranda Rose Hall, and Tiny by Sarah B. Mantell (Yale School of Drama); Lake Kelsey by Dylan Frederick, I'm with you in Rockland, a devised work based on Howl (Yale Cabaret); Cenerentola (Curtis Opera Theater); Talk to me about Shame (NYFringe and at the Syrena Theatre in Warsaw, Poland); Sweeney Todd (Performing Arts Institute); Gentlemen of Kentucky by Thomas Daniel Valls (Dixon Place); and Magellanica by A. J. Ditty (Access Theater). As an assistant/associate director, Kevin has worked with directors Rachel Chavkin, Nicky Silver, Christine Jones, Jackson Gay, John Jesurun, Laura Savia, and Mike Donahue. He is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama, where he was the artistic director of the Yale Cabaret's 2016-2017 season, and has his BFA from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts.

Diana Oh is an actor/singer-songwriter/theatremaker/artist of color working to queer the world with her radical non-complacency. Primer for a Failed Superpower (music supervision Orion Johnstone / dir. Rachel Chavkin), Taylor Mac's 24 Decades, Toshi Reagon's Parable of the Sower, Judtih Malina's History of the World, New Line Cinema's How to Be Single, Member of Baby No More Times (Spotify!). Creator, writer, and performer of {my lingerie play}, Asian People are Not Magicians on Mic.com, One of Refinery 29's Top 14 LGBTQ Influencers, The First Queer Korean American interviewed on Korean Broadcast Radio, A Radical Diva Finalist, Van Lier Fellow in Acting (Asian American Arts Alliance), 2017-2018 Tow Foundation Playwright-in-Residence, Venturous Capital Grant Recipient, and Elphaba Thropp Fellow. www.mylingerieplay.com

Cori Thomas plays include: Citizens Market; When January Feels Like Summer; The Ballad of Ella May; Liberian Legacy Trilogy: Pa's Hat; Flight 109; In The Beginning; My Secret Language of Wishes; Citizens Market; The Princess, The Breast, and, The Lizard; The Unusual Love Life of Bedbugs and Other Creatures; our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor. Cori's plays have been developed and produced at Goodman Theatre, City Theatre Company (Pittsburgh), Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Women's Project Theater, Page 73 Productions, and Playwrights Horizons, to name a few. Residencies and Honors (selected): Resident Playwright at New Dramatists, MacDowell Fellow, Bogliasco Fellow; Baryshnikov Center Fellow; Sundance Theatre Lab Fellow; 2011 American Theatre Critics Association Osborn Award for Best New Play (When January Feels Like Summer); Edgerton New Play Award (When January Feels Like Summer) Upcoming: 2018 World Premiere Citizens Market City Theater Pittsburgh; Writer on an Original Content Series for Audible.com; An Original Screenplay for HBO Films. Representation: Leah Hamos at The Gersh Agency / lhamos@gersh.com


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