Red Bull Theater Continues Its 2018-'19 Revelation Readings With A MOST DANGEROUS WOMAN
Red Bull Theater today announced the cast for the next REVELATION READING, Cathy Tempelsman's A Most Dangerous Woman, directed by Pamela Berlin: Julia Coffey, Carson Elrod, Stephen DeRosa, Andrew Garman, Ben Mehl, Rachel Pickup, Griffin Sharps, Derek Smith, David Ryan Smith, and Sara Topham. This will take place on Monday April 15th at 7:30pm at the Lucille Lortel Theatre (121 Christopher Street, between Bleecker and Hudson Streets).
This reading is generously sponsored by the Off Broadway Angels.
Middlemarch has been declared by fellow writers, and a BBC world poll no less, the greatest British novel of all time. But perhaps even more fascinating is the life of its creator, Mary Anne Evans-and her alter ego nom de plume, George Eliot-who scandalized Victorian society with her unconventional relationship with another George (George Henry Lewes). Based on the novelist's letters and journals, Cathy Tempelsman has created for the stage a fascinating "portrait of a valiant artist" (New York Times), seamlessly interspersed with George Eliot's characters from such beloved works as Silas Marner and Mr. Gilfil's Love Story.
"I was in my thirties when I read my first George Eliot novel, and I've been hooked ever since. The more I learned about the writer, the more fascinated I became by the paradoxes of her extraordinary world. In the 19th century, critics placed Eliot on a level with Shakespeare. And what a life she led: Passionate. Productive. Unconventional. This brilliant woman had the courage to defy every expectation for women. She also made startling personal choices-and suffered the consequences. In Eliot's work, she reveals how gender expectations stifle the growth and the promise of men and women alike. In the play, I explore the unusual circumstances of Evans' life and the difficult choices she made-not least of these the decision to reveal herself as the real George Eliot. This is a moment for Eliot. All around us, people who feel marginalized and hidden are claiming the right to be seen and heard. And this is exactly how Eliot sought to radicalize the English novel, which she did in fact change forever.
"If Art does not enlarge men's sympathies," she wrote, "it does nothing morally." Eliot created heroine after heroine who must wrestle with ambition and desire in a society that not only denies these, but actively seeks to control a woman's sexuality. It is a great paradox that, living in isolation - censured and cast out by society-Eliot would finally unlock the mystery of what makes us human. In discovering her own humanity and sexuality, she writes about and reveals ours as well. A century and a half later, we continue to wrestle with many of the same issues: the importance of female beauty, the definition of marriage, the consequences of revealing to our own family who we really are. Did George Eliot hide behind her pseudonym and her common-law husband's protectiveness? Or did she wisely conceal her identity from a critical and unforgiving society? A Most Dangerous Woman is about a figure misunderstood then and now-a woman with a lifelong desire for legitimacy, determined to fulfill that need on her own terms," said Tempelsman.
In her writing, Cathy Tempelsman is drawn to hidden figures and events from history. Her first play, A Most Dangerous Woman, was inspired by the little-known life of George Eliot. A new script, The Eleventh Hour, is based on a partisan investigation into the final day of combat during World War I. Cathy received a NYSCA commission to develop As You Loathe It, a one-act written in rhymed couplets, into a full-length play. She has also been a finalist for the Terrence McNally New Play Award and Francesca Primus Playwriting Prize, and twice nominated for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Her work has been seen at Barrington Stage Company, Barrow Group, Boston Playwrights Theatre, Echo Theatre, Luna Stage, the New York Theater Festival (upcoming), Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, Stageworks/Hudson and now, Red Bull Theater.
Red Bull Theater continues its OBIE Award-winning Revelation Reading Series, providing the unique opportunity to hear rarely produced classic plays performed by the finest actors in New York.
Red Bull Theater, hailed as "the city's gutsiest classical theater" by Time Out New York, brings rarely seen classic plays to dynamic new life for contemporary audiences, uniting a respect for tradition with a modern sensibility. Named for the rowdy Jacobean playhouse that illegally performed plays in England during the years of Puritan rule, Red Bull Theater is New York City's home for dynamic performances of great plays that stand the test of time. With the Jacobean plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries as its cornerstone, the company also produces new works that are in conversation with the classics. A home for artists, scholars and students, Red Bull Theater delights and engages the intellect and imagination of audiences, and strives to make its work accessible, diverse, and welcoming to all. Red Bull Theater believes in the power of great classic stories and plays of heightened language to deepen our understanding of the human condition, in the special ability of live theater to create unique, collective experiences, and the timeless capacity of classical theater to illuminate the events of our times. Variety agreed, hailing Red Bull's work as: "Proof that classical theater can still be surprising after hundreds of years."
Since its debut in 2003 with a production of Shakespeare's Pericles starring Daniel Breaker, Red Bull Theater has served adventurous theatergoers with Off-Broadway Productions, Revelation Readings, and the annual Short New Play Festival. The company also offers outreach programs including Shakespeare in Schools bringing professional actors and teaching artists into public school classrooms; Bull Sessions, free post-play discussions with top scholars; and Master Classes in classical acting led by veteran theater professionals.
Acclaimed as "a dynamic producer of classic plays" by The New York Times and "the most exciting classical theater in New York" by Time Out NY, Red Bull Theater has produced 17 Off-Broadway productions and over 150 Revelation Readings of rarely seen classics, serving a community of more than 5,000 artists and providing quality artistic programming to an audience of over 65,000. The company's unique programming has received ongoing critical acclaim, and has been recognized with Lortel, Drama Desk, Drama League, Callaway, Off Broadway Alliance, and OBIE nominations and Awards.
Red Bull Theater's acclaimed mainstage production of The White Devil (New York Times' Critic's Pick!) continues at the Lucille Lortel Theatre (121 Christopher Street between Bleecker & Hudson Streets) through April 14th.
For tickets and more information about Revelation Readings, or any of Red Bull Theater's productions and programs, visit www.redbulltheater.com.