World Premiere of Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' THE COMEUPPANCE to be Presented at Signature Theatre

The Comeuppance runs May 16–June 25.

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Signature Theatre will present the world premiere of MacArthur Fellow Branden Jacobs-Jenkins's The Comeuppance, directed by Eric Ting. Concluding Jacobs-Jenkins's Premiere Residency-and Signature's 2022-2023 season of personal and profound works from its Resident writers-The Comeuppance runs May 16-June 25. The organization also shared a vibrant and wide-ranging lineup of additional programming for the season, with events surrounding veteran Signature playwrights and newcomers alike, and engaging audiences in various creative processes both digitally and in person.

In the world premiere of Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' The Comeuppance, a self-proclaimed "Multi-Ethnic Reject Group" reconvenes for the first time in years to pregame for their twentieth high school reunion. They refamiliarize themselves with new versions of old selves over drinks, other substances, and a not-so-innocent truth-telling game. From the start, Death looms over and speaks through them, describing their disquieting and darkly comedic fates. The Comeuppance marks Jacobs-Jenkins' prolific decade as a Signature Premiere Resident playwright. The Comeuppance takes the place of Jacobs-Jenkins' previously-announced Grass.

Signature Theatre will develop the Inaugural Signature Theatre Launchpad Resident Melis Aker's latest play, a workshop production of Indigo Dreams, at the 2023 Colorado New Play Festival, June 16-17. Signature Theatre Artistic Director Paige Evans says of the playwright, actor, and musician-who is from Turkey-"Melis makes work filled with vividly drawn characters and worlds that she knows well but that American audiences may not necessarily be as familiar with." Aker's residency inaugurates the program that, over a three-year period, offers a playwright holistic artistic support, including two $15,000 commissions, a full production in the 99-seat Ford Studio, a workshop production, healthcare benefits, developmental readings (toward production), an annual theatergoing stipend, a writing retreat outside of NYC, private workspace at Signature, and guided mentorship by a Spotlight or Premiere Signature resident playwright.

SigSpace continues, in spring, to bring free and accessible artistic programming to the Center's public spaces and sustain the organization's lobby as a free public workspace and social hub. SigSpace's upcoming programming includes a musical theatre/Broadway-themed trivia night presented with Musical Theatre Factory, for which the winning team will win tickets to The Comeuppance (March 30); VERSES, an evening of poetry and music (April 2); Signature Sips, a small concert series featuring live music and a specially priced happy hour (April 5 & May 3); all-day Indie Theatre Co-Working Hubs with partner IndieSpace (April 6 & May 9); PUNCHLINE comedy evenings (April 7 & May 4); game and bingo nights (April 12 and May 17); Pop Up Bookstore, a flash sale of Signature merchandise and plays by their resident playwright (April 26); SigSocials, a monthly industry networking platform, including a BIPOC Mixer (April 27 and AAPI Theater Mixer (May 11); the monthly drag show series SERVE April 28 and May 12); a May 2K Millennium Mixer - a party for millennials by millennials (May 1); and a Bushwick Book Club concert response to plays by David Henry Hwang and Lauren Yee (May 8). (See full schedule, with times, here).

Supporting Signature Theatre's wide-ranging programming, the 2023 Annual Spring Gala will be held at the Pershing Square Signature Center Monday, April 24. The event will feature an all-star reading of Signature Spotlight Resident Playwright Sarah Ruhl's Eurydice, and will honor Signature Board President Douglas E. Chittenden with the Margot Adams Signature Award. Les Waters, who staged the acclaimed world and Off-Broadway premieres of Eurydice, returns to Ruhl's text to direct the reading at Signature. Ruhl began her Spotlight Residency this year with the Kate Whoriskey-directed production of Letters from Max, a ritual, which recently concluded its run following a one-week extension due to glowing critical acclaim. Tables and tickets are on sale here. Casting for the reading will be announced at a later date.

Signature kicked off its Spring programming on March 20 with the first-time-ever Signature Day of Play, a day-long festival that offered numerous workshops, master classes, and panel discussions from influential institutions and members of the Signature artistic family to students interested in getting to know the many sides of the theater industry.

About the Artists

Branden Jacobs-Jenkins

Branden Jacobs-Jenkins is a Brooklyn-based playwright, producer and two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist. Most recently he was the showrunner, executive producer, and writer for HULU/FX's drama series, Kindred, based on Octavia E. Butler's groundbreaking novel. His plays include Girls, Everybody (Signature Theatre), War (Yale Rep; Lincoln Center/LCT3), Gloria (Vineyard Theatre), Appropriate (Obie Award; Signature Theatre), An Octoroon (Obie Award; Soho Rep, Theatre for a New Audience), and Neighbors (The Public Theater). A Premiere Resident playwright at Signature Theatre, his honors include a USA Artists, Guggenheim, and MacArthur fellowships, the Windham-Campbell Prize for Drama, and the inaugural Tennessee Williams Award and he currently serves as Vice President of the Dramatists Guild council. He teaches at Yale University.

Eric Ting

Eric Ting is an Obie Award-winning director whose recent directing credits include the world premieres of Lloyd Suh's The Far Country (Atlantic Theater Co) and Bina's Six Apples (Alliance, Children's Theater Co); Marcus Gardley's Lear (Cal Shakes, co-director); and Between Two Knees by the 1491s (Oregon Shakespeare Festival). New York: Manhattan Theatre Club, Public Theater Under the Radar, BAM Next Wave, Soho Rep. Regional: Yale Rep, Long Wharf Theatre, Hartford Stage, McCarter Theater, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Philadelphia Theatre Co, Cincinnati Playhouse, Goodman, Victory Gardens, Denver Center, CTG, ACT, Berkeley Rep, Seattle Rep, Oregon Shakespeare Festival. International: Singapore, France, UAE, Holland, Canada, Romania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bali.

Melis Aker

Melis Aker is a writer, actor, and musician from Turkey. Her plays have been commissioned by and developed at Atlantic Theatre (Middle East Mixfest), Ars Nova (Play Group member), NYTW (2050 fellow), O'Neill, NAMT, New Group, Dramatists Guild (DGF fellow), Roundabout Space Jam, LaMaMa, The Lark, Noor, Golden Thread Productions, 24 Hour Plays, Magic Theatre, Corkscrew Festival, BRIC, Golden Thread, and Silk Road Rising in the U.S., as well as the Finborough and Park theatres in London. Aker's plays include: Hound Dog; Field, Awakening; Dragonflies; Scraps and Things; AZUL; When My Mama Was a Hittite; Fractio Panis; Manar; 330 Pegasus: A Love Letter; Indigo Dreams; OPET Diaries; and Gilded Isle. Her screenplay ARI (Bee) was at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival as part of Maison des Scenaristes, and her pilot of MANAR was accepted to Orchard Project's Episodic Lab, Trans Atlantic Partners, and IFP week.

About Signature Theatre

Signature Theatre is an artistic home for storytellers. By producing several plays from each Resident Writer, Signature offers a deep dive into their bodies of work.

Signature serves its mission by hosting distinctive resident playwrights and cultural communities at its permanent home at The Pershing Square Signature Center, a three-theatre facility on West 42nd Street designed by Frank Gehry Architects. At the Center, which opened in January 2012, Signature continues its original Playwright-in-Residence model with Spotlight Residency (formerly Residency 1), an intensive exploration of a single writer's body of work. The Premiere Residency (formerly Residency 5), the only program of its kind, supports playwrights as they build a body of work by guaranteeing each writer three productions over a five-year period. The Legacy Program, launched during Signature's 10th Anniversary, invites writers from both residencies to premiere or restage earlier plays. In 2020, Signature launched SigSpace, to bring free artistic programming to the Center's public spaces and more fully activate Signature's lobby as a free public workspace and social hub for New York artists.

The Pershing Square Signature Center is a major contribution to New York City's cultural landscape. The Center supports and encourages collaboration among artists, cultural organizations and local communities by providing free, public access throughout the space. In addition to its three intimate theatres, the Center features a studio theatre, a rehearsal studio and a public café, bar and bookstore.

Founded in 1991 by James Houghton, Signature Theatre is now led by Artistic Director Paige Evans and Executive Director Timothy J. McClimon. Signature's Resident Playwrights include: Edward Albee, Annie Baker, Lee Blessing, Martha Clarke, Will Eno, Horton Foote, María Irene Fornés, Athol Fugard, John Guare, Stephen Adly Guirgis, A.R. Gurney, Katori Hall, Quiara Alegría Hudes, Samuel D. Hunter, David Henry Hwang, Bill Irwin, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Adrienne Kennedy, Tony Kushner, Romulus Linney, Kenneth Lonergan, Dave Malloy, Charles Mee, Arthur Miller, Dominique Morisseau, Lynn Nottage, Suzan-Lori Parks, Sarah Ruhl, Sam Shepard, Anna Deavere Smith, Regina Taylor, Paula Vogel, Naomi Wallace, August Wilson, Lanford Wilson, Lauren Yee, The Mad Ones, and members of the historic Negro Ensemble Company: Charles Fuller, Leslie Lee, and Samm-Art Williams.

Signature and its artists have been recognized with Tony Awards, Pulitzer Prizes, MacArthur "Genius" grants, and Lucille Lortel, Obie, Drama Desk, AUDELCO, and Artios Awards as well as the 50/50 Award for Gender Parity in Theatre, among many other distinctions. In 2014, Signature became the first New York City theatre to receive the Regional Theatre Tony Award for its body of work and accomplishments as an institution. For more information, please visit

The groundbreaking Signature Access (formerly the Signature Ticket Initiative), which in 2019 celebrated its one millionth ticket sold, guarantees affordable tickets to every Signature production through 2032. Serving as a model for theatres and performing arts organizations across the country, the Initiative was founded in 2005 and is made possible, in part, by Lead Partner The Pershing Square Foundation.


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