Signature Theatre Announces Full Cast of 'Home'
Signature Theatre Company (James Houghton, Founding Artistic Director; Erika Mallin, Executive Director) is proud to announce casting for HOME, by Samm-Art Williams and directed by Ron OJ Parson. HOME will be the second production of Signature’s 2008-09 season celebrating the historic Negro Ensemble Company (NEC).The cast of HOME will include Tracey Bonner (The Talented Tenth), Kevin T. Carroll (Take Me Out), and January LaVoy (Two Trains Running).HOME begins performances on November 11, 2008 and continues through January 4, 2009 at The Peter Norton Space located at 555 West 42nd Street (between 10th and 11th Avenues). Opening Night is December 7th. Tickets go on sale to the public on October 14th, with an internet presale beginning October 10th. Samm-Art Williams’ critically acclaimed HOME is a wonderfully theatrical tale of one man’s struggle to stay true to himself amidst a rapidly changing and turbulent America. Leaving behind his family’s farm in North Carolina, Cephus Miles seeks refuge and prosperity in the North. Three actors portray more than twenty-five characters over the course of Cephus’s epic journey from adolescence to adulthood, spanning the 1950’s through the Vietnam War and Civil Rights eras. The show ran at Broadway’s Cort Theatre from 1980 to 1981, and received Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations for Best Play. Signature Theatre is proud to be presenting the works of the historic NEC. The company has an extensive theatre training program and in its 40 year history has produced more than two hundred new plays. The NEC’s distinguished alumni include writers such as Stephen Carter, Lonne Elder, Charles Fuller, Leslie Lee and Samm-Art Williams, and actors Angela Bassett, Laurence Fishburne, Samuel L. Jackson, Phylicia Rashad, Esther Rolle and Denzel Washington.Signature’s 2008-2009 season is an examination of a body of work from the historic Negro Ensemble Company’s collective of writers, whose contributions have helped shape America’s theatrical heritage. Ruben Santiago-Hudson will serve as Associate Artist for the season, which will also include Charles Fuller’s ZOOMAN AND THE SIGN and a staged reading of Douglas Turner Ward’s DAY OF ABSENCE. The first production of the season, Leslie Lee’s THE FIRST BREEZE OF SUMMER, opened to glowing reviews and has been extended twice by popular demand. The show is now playing through October 19th. Tickets are available via signaturetheatre.org or via phone (212) 244-PLAY (7529) and in person at the Signature Theatre Box Office (555 West 42nd Street (between 10th and 11th Avenues). Through The Signature Ticket Initiative, which seeks to make great theatre accessible to the broadest possible audience, all regularly-priced single tickets ($65) are underwritten and are available for $20 every performance for the entire season, during a show’s initial run. The Signature Ticket Initiative continues through Signature’s 20th Anniversary Season (2010-2011).The Signature Ticket Initiative is made possible by the lead sponsorship of Time Warner Inc. Generous support for The Signature Ticket Initiative is provided by Margot Adams, in memory of Mason Adams.Support for the Negro Ensemble Company Season is provided by American Express.2008-2009 Signature subscriptions are currently on sale. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit signaturetheatre.org or call (212) 244-PLAY (7529). BIOSSamm-Art Williams (Playwright). As a member of the Negro Ensemble Company’s Acting Repertory, Mr. Williams performed in The First Breeze of Summer (Broadway), Eden, Nevis Mountain Dew, No-Where to Run . . . No-Where to Hide, Old Phantoms, and The Brownsville Raid. His NEC-produced plays are Home (Tony nomination, Outer Critics Circle Award, Drama Desk Nomination, NAACP Image Award, and the North Carolina Governor’s Award) O, A Love Play, Welcome to Black River, and Eyes of the American. Mr. Williams’ other plays include Woman from the Town, Cork, Brass Birds Don’t Sing, Friends, In My Father’s House, Welcome to Black River, Home the Musical, Conversations on a Dirt Road, The Dance on Widows’ Row, The Waiting Room, and Revival. Mr. Williams’ film acting credits include Blood Simple, Huckleberry Finn, The Wanderers, A Rage in Harlem, Dressed to Kill, and Denmark Vesey’s Rebellion. Television writing credits include Solomon Northup’s Odessey, Port Royal Experiment (PBS), With Ruby and Ossie (PBS), Badges (CBS), The New Mike Hammer (CBS), Cagney and Lacey (CBS), John Henry (Showtime/Shelly Duval), John Punch (American Playhouse/PBS), Motown Returns to the Apollo (NBC), and Frank’s Place (CBS, Humanitas Award). Mr. Williams was Co-Executive Producer of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (NBC) and Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper (ABC); Executive Producer of Martin (Fox) and Good News (UPN); and Consulting Producer of the Columbia Tri-Star talk show Vibe, with host Sinbad. He has received the Guggenheim Fellowship, the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship for Playwrighting, and the Roanoke Island Historical Association’s Morrison Award. Ron OJ Parson (Director) just directed The First Breeze of Summer by Leslie Lee at Chicago’s Court Theatre, where he is resident artist. He has recently directed the world premiere of Palmer Park by Joanna M. Glass at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Ontario, and his upcoming slate includes the Pittsburgh premiere of August Wilson's Radio Golf, August Wilson’s Gem of the Ocean at the Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati and then two more productions at the Court Theatre: the suspense thriller Wait Until Dark by Frederick Knott and The Piano Lesson by August Wilson. Parson is the co-founder and former Artistic Director of the Onyx Theatre Ensemble of Chicago, and a co-founder and co-director of Ripe ManGo Productions Film and Television Production Company. Some of the theatres Ron has worked with in Chicago include The Chicago Theatre Company, Victory Gardens, Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf, Chicago Dramatists, Northlight, Court, Black Ensemble Theatre, ETA Creative Arts Foundation and Writers Theatre. Some of the regional theatres include Virginia Stage Company, Portland Stage Company, Studio Arena Theatre, Studio Theatre, Roundabout Theatre, Wilshire Theatre, The Mechanic, Center Stage and, most recently, The Actors Theatre of Louisville. An accomplished actor, some of Ron's TV and film credits include “ER,” “Early Edition,” “Turks,” “American Playhouse,” Vamping, Ali, Barbershop 2, Primal Fear and Drop Squad. He is a native of Buffalo, New York and a graduate of the University of Michigan's professional theatre program. Tracey Bonner (Woman Two) is honored to make her Signature Theatre debut. Other theatre credits include The Talented Tenth at Congo Square Theatre Company; Home at Madison Repertory Theatre; Joe Turner's Come and Gone at The Goodman Theatre; How the Kanye' West Was Won and Six Degrees of Reparation at Second City in Chicago. She holds an MFA in Acting from The Theatre School at DePaul University and is an Artistic Associate with Congo Square Theatre Company.Kevin T. Carroll (Cephus Miles). Broadway: Take Me Out; 45 Seconds From Broadway; Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk; and Angels in America. Off-Broadway: Mr. Carroll is happy to return to Signature after August Wilson's Seven Guitars. Other Off-Broadway: Sleep Deprivation Chamber; Scapin; God’s Heart (Lincoln Center Theater); Stop Kiss; Satellites; The Piano Teacher (South Coast Rep), and most recently "Horatio" in Hamlet (Public/NYSF). January LaVoy (Woman 1/Pattie Mae Wells). Off-Broadway: Two Trains Running (Signature Theatre -- 2007 Lucille Lortel award, Best Revival), Joy (Actors’ Playhouse). NYC and Regional: world premieres of Christopher Durang’s Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge (City Theatre), Dael Orlandersmith’s Raw Boys (Wilma Theatre), Keith Glover’s Jazzland (Contemporary American Theatre Festival) and Brian Dykstra’s Spill the Wine (Gayfest NYC); Measure for Measure (Shakespeare Theater of NJ), A Streetcar Named Desire, The Merchant of Venice, Hamlet, Lobby Hero, Cyrano de Bergerac (Denver Center Theatre Company), The Piano Lesson (Pittsburgh Public Theatre). Film: War of the Worlds. Television: “3 lbs.”, “Law & Order”, “Law & Order: SVU”, “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”, “Guiding Light”, and “All My Children”. Ms. LaVoy also plays the role of Noelle Ortiz on “One Life to Live”. MFA: National Theatre Conservatory (Denver). Fore more information please visit www.signaturetheatre.org